Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited
Tribology 2000 Plus - Technische Akademie Esslingen, Germany
Tribology 2000 Plus - Technische Akademie Esslingen, Germany - 11th-13 January 2000
Keywords: Tribology, Germany, Conferences
The first tribology conference in the third millennium was held in early January at Esslingen in Germany.
The success of previous conferences at TAE and much hard work done in accumulating 270 papers encouraged a very healthy attendance of 850 people. Just as pleasing as the volume of interest in this conference was the fact that 45 percent of the attendees were based outside of Germany.
The first day was mainly absorbed by the plenary sessions covering the topics of the ITC (International Tribology Congress) and future trends in tribological research. Participants were then brought back to earth by a presentation on the current state of the world lubricants market and the importance of base oils and additives in covering expected trends.
Some predictions on future automotive lubricants and tribological material developments were thought provoking. An introduction to the complexities of tribology in magnetic recording technology was of great interest to the audience. This is clearly a new field to many of us and will undoubtedly be the subject of much research in the future.
The conference then split into different groups covering a wide range of subjects in detail. The conference continued in this fashion with ten presentations being given simultaneously in different lecture rooms.
The overall standard of papers was extremely good but there did seem to be some areas where the researchers' work did seem to be unrelated to real world problems. It is very easy to say "so what" after studying a research paper where the work seems to be for its own sake rather then actually being of practical value. Pure research is of course absolutely vital but at times it does seem that too much research is leading us nowhere and is merely self-generated. Presumably this is where no commercial sponsorship is involved. There was some criticism of a very small number of papers that seemed to present very basic information to an audience of "experts".
Hopefully the conference presentation of research work via conferences and journals will continue to provide a controlling influence?
However the TAE and Professor Bartz in particular can look back with pride on the 12th International meeting. All the factors for a successful meeting were present, good technical facilities, smooth organisation and the painstaking attention of the staff at TAE to any minor problem or query that arose.
An excellent start to our continued needs to increase our knowledge of tribology as we enter the new millennium. Many will have noted the dates for the next conference in two years time!