The Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya (UPC) and the Girbau Group company have signed a renewal to the agreement for the Girbau Group Chair in Research and innovation in laundry technology, a chair created in February 2012, for another three years.
This renewal consolidates the collaboration between the Girbau group and UPC in R&D&i activities and the transfer of research results related to laundering, especially via the UPC’s Centre de Disseny d’Equips Industrials (CDEI). The Chair is headed by Carles Riba, who is also director of the CDEI, and has its headquarters in this technological innovation centre specialising in machine engineering, which is part of the Centre d'Innovació Tecnològica (CIT UPC) and is located in the Campus Diagonal Sud, inBarcelona.
The Chair will promote technology research projects applied to equipment, especially those related to innovation and product development processes in the field of industrial laundering. In these areas priority will be given to environmental protection and the promotion of sustainable technology. The joint research projects are designed to be applied directly or indirectly to international markets, in order to add value to the laundry industry. Research activities will include the promotion of doctoral theses.
The framework of the Chair also includes promoting the transfer of knowledge about the results of the research, giving them value by means of patents or the direct application of the results in the market, and disseminating them.
More efficient technology
The innovation projects developed jointly between the CDEI and the Girbau Group include especially the conceptual design for the manufacture of a new model of washing machine, the HS6024, which is already on the market and has more features than previous ranges, while at the same time having lower production, assembly and maintenance costs. The final product is the result of the calculations performed on the critical elements and mechanical fatigues to which the loads are subjected during the life of the washer.
Another important collaboration has been the development of a range of high efficiency dryers, the ED series. The project was awarded the 7th Carles Ferrer Salat Award, by Foment de Treball Nacional (Department for Employment Development), in the environment category, for applying technology that promotes more eco-efficient production. In the same vein, the CDEI of the UPC and the Girbau Group have promoted a transversal project to redefine the design process for new products that lead to a gain in efficiency.
Training and in-company practical work
In addition to project development, the activities of the Chair will allow the Girbau Group to identify talent among UPC students and thus encourage recruitment to the company.
With regard to training, the Girbau Group will collaborate with the UPC by participating in various programmes run by the University (such as postgraduate programmes, optional subjects and activities which complement undergraduate and postgraduate studies), and the collaboration will also impact the company’s training plans.
Girbau Group is one of the leading international groups in the manufacture of industrial laundry equipment. Its internationalisation process began more than two decades ago and it currently has four production centres in Spain and France, and 14 commercial subsidiaries around the world.