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The Institute of Machining Technology

The Institute of Machining Technology (ISF), headed by Prof. Dr.-Ing. Prof. h.c. Dirk Biermann, has engaged in research and education in all relevant machining processes and in the application of methods from computer science in machining for nearly 50 years. The investigated processes include turning, drilling, deep hole drilling, milling, grinding, honing and blasting. Several of these processes are performed in the high-speed (HSC) or high-performance (HPC) range or are to be qualified for these highly productive techniques in current research activities. Furthermore, micromachining (for drilling and milling), dry machining and minimal-quantity lubrication constitute central aspects of the research at ISF. The realisation of virtual machining processes based on different modelling techniques and the optimisation of production-related processes are also analysed comprehensively.

These research areas represent a spectrum which ranges from projects of fundamental nature, i.e. in the context of publicly funded research, to appli­cation-based projects, which are worked on in direct cooperation with industry partners.

The public benefits from the gained knowledge in terms of numerous written publications (42 in 2020) and contributions to conferences as well as participation in exhibitions and other events. In the case of application-based projects, the knowledge is exclusively made accessible to the industry partners. To accomplish these tasks, the staff of the institute comprises 27 scientific and 7 technical employees as well as approx. 40 student assistants at present. In addition, three scholarship holders are enriching the ISF for several years since 2020. In small teams, these highly qualified employees deal with tasks according to their professional expertise. The scientific employees additionally are responsible for the acquisition and documentation of research projects whereas the technical staff primarily takes care of the extensive machine, measuring, and computer equipment of the institute and is in charge of accounting, administration, and maintaining the library. Approximately 20 percent of the personnel costs are financed by federal funds, the remaining personnel costs are financed by third-party funds.

Another important task is the education of students. For this purpose, ISF offers numerous courses, to some extent of fundamental nature, which are always expanded with results from current research works. The courses are aimed at students from mechanical engineering, logistics, industrial engineering, Master of Science in Manufacturing Technology (MMT) and in some cases students of the whole TU Dortmund University.

The technical equipment includes 20 modern CNC machine tools and machi­ning centres, which can be used to conduct the aforementioned machining processes at the highest stage. Addi­tionally, comprehensive measuring equipment and an excellent IT infrastructure are available at ISF. Specific facilities and laboratories allow an optimal realisation of experiments, conferences, and seminars.

The ISF (cf. fig.) is comprised of three research divisions (Machining Techno­logy, Grinding Technology, Simulation and Process Design). These three divi­sions are supported by employees of the extensively equipped electronic and measuring laboratories (including hard- and software), by sample preparation, and with regard to the business managing of research projects by an internal accounting and purchasing department.

The ISF maintains several collaborations to other research institutes and to industry partners. The cooperation with industry partners covers a wide range of topics:

  • Optimisation of manufacturing processes
  • Solutions for machining problems
  • Design of cutting tools
  • Machining of special materials
  • Support for the adoption of new technologies
  • Processing of digitised data
  • Prototypical manufacturing
  • Simulations
  • Trainings
  • Seminars
ISF Organization Chart

Within TU Dortmund University, there are strong connections to the Institute of Materials Engineering, to the Materials Test Engineering Department, to the Institute of Forming Technology and Lightweight Construction, to all other chairs and institutes of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and to several chairs of the Department of Computer Science, the Faculty of Statistics, and the Faculty of Mathematics. Close relations within the German research landscape are maintained especially with institutes and chairs from production engineering which are members of the WGP (German Academic Society for Production Engineering) and with research institutes from materials engineering as well as with different Fraunhofer Institutes. In the field of machining technology, the ISF contributes to several working groups and standardisation committees (DIN, VDI, FWF, DGM, FVA).

A variety of international contacts and collaborations is established as well. Prof. Biermann is Fellow of the International Academy for Production Engineering (CIRP) whereby direct cooperations and contacts are established to the following universities and institutions:

  • University College Dublin, Irland, Prof. G. Byrne
  • Georgia Institute of Technology, USA, George W. Woodruff School
    of Mechanical Engineering, Prof. S. Melkote.
  • University of North Carolina, USA, Charlotte, Department of Engineering
    & Engineering Science, Prof. M. Davies
  • University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Kanada, Department
    of Mechanical Engineering, Prof. Y. Altintas
  • TU Wien, Institut für Fertigungstechnik und Hochleistungslasertechnik, Prof. Dr.-techn. Friedrich Bleicher
  • ARTS & METIERS | Campus of Cluny, Labomap Laboratory Prof. J. C. Outeiro, MEng, MSc, PhD


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Location & approach

From A1

Take exit Kreuz Dortmund/Unna to merge onto A44 toward Dortmund, which changes into the B1. Exit Dortmund-Dorstfeld toward Universität (onward see map).

From A 45

Exit Dortmund-Eichlinghofen toward Universität (onward see map).

Alternatively, you can calculate the route here: Google Maps.


Arrival by Deutsche Bahn to Dortmund or Bochum central station.

From Dortmund central station, take the S1 city train in the direction of Düsseldorf to the "Dortmund Universität" station (7 minutes journey time).

From Bochum central station, take the S1 city train in the direction of Dortmund to the "Dortmund Universität" station (14 minutes journey time).

The city train runs regularly every 20 minutes in both directions.  From the city train station, take the Skytrain (S-Universität stop) to the Campus Süd stop (1 stop, runs every 10 minutes).

From Dort­mund Airport

By taxi to TU Dortmund University, Campus South (approx. 20 min and 30 €, see  Map)

From Düsseldorf Airport

Take the city train S1 in the direction of Dortmund to the "Dortmund-Universität" station (approx. 60 min). From here, take the Skytrain in the direction of Campus South or Eichlinghofen (runs every 10 minutes and takes approx. 3 min.).


The H-Bahn is one of the hallmarks of TU Dort­mund Uni­ver­sity. There are two stations on North Campus. One (“Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät S”) is directly located at the suburban train stop, which connects the uni­ver­si­ty directly with the city of Dort­mund and the rest of the Ruhr Area. Also from this station, there are connections to the “Technologiepark” and (via South Campus) Eichlinghofen. The other station is located at the dining hall at North Campus and offers a direct connection to South Campus every five minutes.


The facilities of TU Dort­mund Uni­ver­sity are spread over two campuses, the larger Campus North and the smaller Campus South. Additionally, some areas of the uni­ver­si­ty are located in the adjacent “Technologiepark”.

Site Map of TU Dort­mund Uni­ver­sity (Second Page in English).