Online Symposium on Innovation and Automation in Remanufacturing

In cooperation with FJW Consulting, the Environmental Campus Birkenfeld organizes an online conference series every other month on the topic of innovation and automation in remanufacturing. The next conference will take place on April 26th at 17:00 CEST. The title of the symposium is Reman and Automation/Reman and Steel Industry.

One of the presentations will be by Rachel Waugh, who has been working with the global steel industry association, worldsteel, since 2019 to better understand the status and prospects of remanufacturing, one of the four pillars of the Circular Economy they have identified as of particular relevance to steel. This presentation describes the work to date, including the launch of the Remanufacturing Working Group, which aims to bring together remanufacturing practitioners from across different steel-intensive sectors, to monitor the trends of the industry through an interactive tracker, and explore key topics of interest, such as carbon footprinting of remanufactured products.

The second presentation will be by Erik Sundin who will talk about a national research project called ARR conducted during 2018 and 2021 in Sweden with 5 companies to understand why and where automation could be implemented in remanufacturing processes. This presentation will conclude the findings from the project and parts of the research papers that the project resulted in.

Following the presentations Peter Bartel will comment and animate the discussion as a panellist

Meet the People Involved

Rachel Waugh

Rachel Waugh, Oakdene Hollins

Rachel has a background in resource and process efficiency through her PhD in Engineering and her MA in Manufacturing Engineering from the University of Cambridge.  Her PhD explored ways to halve carbon dioxide emissions in the global steel and aluminium industries, and she contributed to the book ‘Sustainable Materials With Both Eyes Open’, which in 2015 Bill Gates listed as one of his “top five books to read”.  Rachel joined Oakdene Hollins in 2013 and has contributed to studies to evaluate and quantify remanufacturing markets for Malaysia, Scotland and Europe, and value retention markets in Canada and the UK. Rachel has ongoing activities in the area of remanufacturing standards development: she is a member of the BSI remanufacturing sub-committee of BS8887 and was a UK expert for the joint working group with China on remanufacturing.

Erik Sundin

Erik Sundin, Linköping University

Erik conducted his PhD at Linköping University within the area of remanufacturing in year 2004. Most of Erik’s research has been focusing on remanufacturing but recently topics of Sustainable Manufacturing and Product as a Service (PaaS) also have become a part of his research. He has been working within six European Union projects called CAN-Reman, ERN, L4IDS , CarE-Servive, CIRC€UIT and SCANDERE. Both CAN-Reman and ERN were aiming at improving the business and operations of European remanufacturers including e.g. the Swedish companies of Toyota Material Handling and UBD Cleantech. The CarE-Service project dealt with the development of services regarding the reuse, remanufacturing and recycling of electric vehicles. Currently he is acting Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Remanufacturing (Springer Verlag).

Peter Bartel

Peter Bartel,  Circular Economy Solutions GmbH

Peter Bartel currently works in a management position as Marketing/Engineering Director at C-ECO Circular Economy Solutions GmbH. He holds an engineering degree from DHBW Mannheim and is currently vice chairman of the Board of the Automotive Parts Remanufacturer Association (Apra Europe). Prior to this he has held the chairman position of the same association for several years. Peter is a well-known expert for the remanufacturing of automotive components, being honoured by ReMaTec as the Remanufacturer of the Year in 2017.

Matthias Vette-Steinkamp

Matthias Vette-Steinkamp, Trier University of Applied Sciences, Environmental Campus Birkenfeld

Matthias is currently setting up a working group for remanufacturing system technologies at Trier University of Applied Sciences, Environmental-Campus Birkenfeld. From March 2012 to February 2020, he was head of department at ZeMA - Center for Mechatronics and Automation Technology in Saarbrücken. At the same time, he is a lecturer for industrial robotics and human-technology interaction and head of the international research cluster Robotix-Academy. His research focuses on the automotive and aerospace industry as well as agile production.

His research interests focus on the application of robotics and automation in industrial production. In this context, he leads and contributes to a broad portfolio of innovation and technology transfer projects aiming at the introduction of robotics technologies in the production sector according to the Industry 4.0.

Wolfgang Gerke

Wolfgang Gerke, Trier University of Applied Sciences, Environmental Campus Birkenfeld

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Wolfgang Gerke is a Professor at the Trier University of Applied Sciences, Environmental Campus Birkenfeld and 'Assistant Professeur Associe' at the University of Luxembourg. He is an expert in robotics and control and studied mechanical engineering at the University of Duisburg. Before becoming a professor, he worked for more than 12 years in various companies such as Thyssen Engineering, ThyssenKrupp Encoke and Robert Bosch GmbH. He gave numerous presentations at international conferences and published articles in many journals.

Fernand Weiland

Fernand Weiland, FJW Consulting

Fernand Jean Weiland has spent 30 years in management positions with Bendix Automotive, Lucas Automotive, Magneti Marelli Automotive and TRW Automotive.

Fernand Weiland founded the APRA ( Automotive Parts Remanufacturer Assoc.)  European Division in 1989, serving as the division’s first chairman for more than 20 years.  Between 1990 and 2010 he organised a considerable number of APRA forums, workshops and exhibitions across Europe.

A co-founder of the biennial ReMaTec remanufacturing exhibitions in Amsterdam, Fernand Weiland has written numerous articles for the ReMaTecNews magazine as well as editing five books about automotive remanufacturing in Europe. He was also instrumental in setting up APRA’s Asia-Pacific Division. Fernand was the 2019 winner of the ReMaTec Ambassador Award.

Past Sessions


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The conference will be conducted via the video conference tool Big Blue Button. Detailed instructions on how to use the tool and a link to the event will be sent out after the registration is complete.

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