The XIA-Xylexpo Innovation Awards were assigned for the fourth edition. The awards have become a traditional event of the biennial international exhibition of wood and furniture industry technology, closing on Saturday 15. The award included five categories – solid wood, panels, finishing, digitalization and sustainability – and required an intensive work for the jury who accurately evaluated all the entries to assign the Xylexpo “Oscar”, a “dwarf” designed in 2014 – when the award was originally introduced – by Elio Fiorucci for Riva 1920.
The award for the “Solid wood processing” category went to Paoletti Energy from Borgo Valbelluna (Belluno) for the gluing system “Iglueing PUR Hyper”. The justification: “It is an innovative system for the application of polyurethane adhesives in finger jointing. The innovative features include a massive reduction of applicator cleaning time, a more efficient use of adhesive, and easy integration with several machines”.
For the “Panel processing” category, the jury decided to reward two solutions “…which solve the same problem with different approaches but equivalent results”. The winners were “Hand Guard” by Altendorf in Minden (Germany) and “Blade Off” by SCM in Rimini. “The innovative features include a significant improvement of operator safety in squaring machines, potentially applicable also to other types of machines”, the jury commented.
In the “Finishing” category, “…the jury identified the automatic spraying machine “Excellent Cm80” by Makor in Sinalunga (Siena), the winner in this category. The innovative features include enhanced belt conveyor cleaning, greater efficiency in paint use as a result of more effective overspray recovery”.
The “Digitalization” award went to the “Digital Factory” system of SCM in Rimini. The justification states: “…although this has been an established trend in the furniture industry for a few years, the jury recognized the innovative features of this eco-system, as it offers the possibility to capture information and data from a production environment, with the capacity to monitor a product from order, through production, up to after-sales. This solution offers a range of services that enable the OEM to leverage new business models in line with the current market trends”.
The award for the “Sustainability” category went to the wood dust extractor by Spänex in Uslar (Germany). “The jury recognized that the product represents a real innovation, as the approach to sustainability is clear since the early design phases and consistently translates into the environmental, social and economic aspects. In detail, energy saving, environmental protection and the integration with existing recycling systems were recognized as environmental benefits; the protection of workers with a versatile, scalable and flexible system, adapting to different business requirements, were recognized as social benefits; for the governance, improved maintenance and reduce business risks are achieved through the reduction of fire risk and more efficient system control options”.
The XIA-Xylexpo Innovation Awards are assigned by a jury that select the winners independently. The working group includes the following members, in alphabetical order.
Stefano Berti, chairman of the jury, former director of IRL, merged into CNR IBE, professor of wood technology and forest applications at the Agriculture Department of the University of Palermo, and professor of wood and wood-based material industries at the Agriculture Department of the University of Florence.
Anna Bortoluzzi, Qualified Management Consultant at ICMCI, with a MA in chemistry and material technology, she has developed significant experience in industrial plant management and statistical analysis. Since 2006, she has been working as lifecycle analysis (LCA) expert in international projects and in the development of PCRs (Product Category Rules). For twenty years, she was visiting professor at the University of Milan. She is a founding member and partner of MAPPING LCA.
Filippo Boschi, Project manager for innovation, industrial research and experimental development. MADE s.c.a r.l., Competence Center Industry 4.0. Consultant of the Italian Ministry of Economic Development for Industry 4.0 topics.
Franco Bulian, Director of CATAS, Italy’s major laboratory for certification, research and testing in the wood-furniture industry. Professor of the course Materials and technologies of the furniture industry in the double-degree track of the Universities of Trieste (Italy) and Lippe (Germany).
Gianni Campatelli, Associate professor, University of Florence. Department of Industrial Engineering. Manager of the “Manufacturing Technology Research Lab”.
Giacomo Goli, Associate professor, University of Florence. Wood technology and forestry applications. Agricultural, food, environmental and forest sciences and technology (DAGRI).
Felice Ragazzo, Visiting professor for the wood module of the international Master course “Architectural restoration and asset culture”, Department of Architecture Roma 3, former High Qualification Professor at the Industrial Design course of the University "La Sapienza" in Rome.
Frieder Scholz, Former professor at the Hochschule Rosenheim - University of Applied Sciences. Head of the Master course in wood technology and manager of the machine tools, machining and equipment dynamics laboratory.