igus announces ninth vector award; application now open

Applications for the ninth vector award are now being accepted with a deadline set for 9 Feb 2024

igus has announced the ninth instalment of the igus vector award. The award recognises design engineers and project managers for the innovative use of energy supply systems and cables made of plastic. Winners will receive prize money of up to €5,000.

Artificial intelligence, machine learning and Industry 4.0 are trending topics in the media and the public. However, “it’s easy to forget that engineers are making amazing progress in other relatively inconspicuous areas as well – in cable and hose guidance in machines and systems, for instance,” according to Michael Blass, CEO e-chain systems at igus. This is requires the skill and expertise of design engineers.

Meanwhile, customers are demanding more than before: hydraulic hoses weighing tons that move in a fail-safe manner for more than 1km in gigantic bucket wheel excavators, for example; data cables that can follow 3D movements on articulated arm robots in factories; energy chain systems that meet cleanroom requirements in the world in electronics production; or control cables that can fit in small installation spaces.

“Every day, we see how design engineers around the world implement extraordinary ideas with our energy chains and cables to meet increasingly stringent requirements. And long-lasting e-chain systems contribute greatly to sustainability,” said Blass. “We are honouring these solutions, which often stay under the radar but are increasingly influencing product cost-effectiveness, with the 2024 vector award.”

Open for registration

Engineers can now enter the competition for the vector award. The deadline for entries is 9 Feb 2024. A panel of expert judges drawn from science, specialist media, industrial trade shows and professional associations will examine the project and reward the best ideas.

The winner of the vector award will receive the golden vector trophy and €5,000 in prize money. The second place will receive the silver vector and €2,500; and for the third place, the bronze vector and €1,000. The green vector comes with €1,000 and goes to projects featuring sustainability. The vector awards ceremony in 2024 will be held at the Hannover Messe.

The vector award has taken place every two years since 2008. In 2022, 233 applications were sent in from 36 countries. Gepber Szinpad, a Hungarian company, won first place for a multifunctional hall with automated rows of chairs that change formation at the push of a button. Dercks Gartenbau received the green vector for developing a precise watering trolley for potted plants.

“The vector award is also an excellent opportunity for engineers and companies to attract attention, expand their network and win new customers,” said Blass. “With this in mind, we hope for many exciting projects this year as well.”