R+T Innovation Prize 2018: nine prize-winning companies chosen from around 110 entries

The winners of the R+T Innovation Prize 2018 during the presentation ceremony on the evening before the first day of the trade fair. Photo credits: Messe Stuttgart

On the evening of 26 February 2018, i.e. one day before the start of R+T 2018, the renowned Innovation Prize was presented for the tenth time. The leading world trade fair for roller shutters, doors/gates and sun protection systems once again strengthened its status as an innovation platform during the official prize presentation ceremony.

The R+T Innovation Prize, which is awarded by the Federal Association for Manufacturers of Roller Shutters and Sun Protection (BVRS), the National Federation of Door and Gate Manufacturers (BVT), the Industrial Association for Technical Textiles, Roller Shutters and Sun Protection (ITRS), and Messe Stuttgart, honours innovative technical developments. It helps to attract the interest of experts in exemplary innovations from the industry that were launched on the market for the first time in 2016 or have been developed up to market maturity.

The coveted Innovation Prize is presented in several categories: roller shutters, awnings, gathering blinds, internal sun protection systems, drives for roller shutters and sun protection systems, technical textiles, doors/gates, drives and control systems for doors/gates, special solutions and young craftsmen. Special prizes are also presented in the areas of energy efficiency, design and craft skills. Out of a total of around 110 entries, nine companies were chosen as the prize winners. The entries were judged by an independent jury comprising trade association representatives, technical editors and other experts under the chairmanship of Dr. Christoph Meyer, Managing Director of the Hausladen + Meyer Engineering Office for Building Climate. The features of the submitted products were examined and evaluated right down to the last detail. In addition to the innovative quality and market potential of the developments, the relevant factors in the jury’s decision also included user-friendliness and product reliability.

The winners

The following companies were presented with the R+T Innovation Prize 2018:

Burda Worldwide Technologies GmbH

In the category “Special solutions” the company impressed the jury with its modular system for air-conditioning of outdoor areas. The patented plug-in system combines infrared radiant heaters with LED lighting and/or cooling jets, and is therefore totally flexible.

Elsner Elektronik GmbH

The RF-MSG-DST, a radio motor control unit from Elsner Elektronik GmbH, was the winner in the category “Craft skills”. It is used for manual operation and automatic control of shades or windows. When combined with other F-Con modules, individual sun protection solutions can be implemented very easily.

Face S.p.A

The special prize in the category “Energy efficiency” was awarded to the product portfolio for automation systems for sliding and revolving doors of Face S.p.A. These products are driven solely by brushless motors which act directly on the belts without reduction gears. The electronic controller was produced using highly efficient switchmode technology which reduces energy consumption in the complete automation system.

GfA Elektromaten GmbH & Co. KG

The UKS 12-20 chain tensioner from GfA Elektromaten GmbH & Co. KG impressed the jury in the category “Drive and control systems for door/gates”. It does not require a fixed point, but is simply mounted on the chain. The wrap circumference of the chain wheels is increased and any wear-related chain elongation is automatically evened out. This makes maintenance work much easier since regular retensioning of the chain is no longer necessary. The product and installation costs are very low and the solution has unique flexibility.

Hunter Douglas Europe B.V.

The company Hunter Douglas won no less than three prizes. GreenScreen Sea-Tex™ won two prizes, i.e. in the category “Technical textiles” and the special category “Energy efficiency”. It is the first sun protection fabric to be produced using 50% of recycled plastic waste from the world’s oceans. The textile structure and discreet colour emphasise the value and high design standard of the innovative fabric, which is also energy-efficient.

The company also won the special prize for design with Luxaflex® Pirouette® shades. This sophisticated and exclusive window decoration impresses with all the advantages of interior light protection, visual protection and sun protection. The innovative and complex product development is based on several patents.

Reflexa-Werke Albrecht GmbH

The TwinTube conservatory awning from the company Reflexa-Werke Albrecht GmbH represents a new dimension in conservatory shades and won the Innovation Prize in the category “Awnings”. Thanks to the patented technology, it is now possible to attain a permanently crease-free awning material for the first time. For this purpose, individual fabric sheets are mutually guided on two separate fabric rollers. In the interaction between both fabric rollers the individual, unconnected fabric sheets are kept under constant tension, thus ensuring a perfect taut cover at all times. The fabric rollers are also supported in the middle by bearings in order to prevent sagging with large building geometries.

Roma KG

In the category “Gathering blinds” the Innovation Prize went to the SmartTurn tape reel of Roma KG which will be used in all Roma gathering blinds in future. In future, it will no longer be necessary to remove the curtain for simple adjustment tasks, e.g. adjusting the diagonal pull and turning angle, or to replace the wearing lift tape. All work can be performed conveniently from underneath the top bar when the curtain is pulled out.

Stackdoor Products NV

Stackdoor (Stackdoor Products NV) is a completely new safety door which can be used in nearly every situation. It impressed the jury in the category “Doors/Gates”. The system stacks the slats rather than rolling them up. This reduces the amount of installation space substantially. Due to this mechanism, the door can be bent in different shapes. It is possible to use different material thicknesses which make the door extremely resistant.

Warema Renkhoff SE

Warema Renkhoff SE won three prizes: the Stretch cassette roller blind impressed in the category “Interior sun protection”. The transparency of the fabric can be individually adjusted. In close cooperation with a weaving mill, a special fabric was developed from firm silicone threads and different yarns, and was improved continuously. This curtain was transformed into a motorised roller blind which is operated via a switch or a control unit.

The Smart programming cable won the prize in the category “Drive and control systems for roller shutters and sun protection systems”. It is a setting control for sun protection drives and makes the work of specialist retailers and fitters much easier. Drive stop positions can be set instantly and detailed instructions are not required.

The SecuKit was the winner in the category “Roller shutters”: in roller shutters it combines the proven standard operating variants of a motor and a belt, thus ensuring quick and easy operation in the event of fire. Warema roller shutters fitted with SecuKit have a motorised drive and are easily operated via an intelligent control unit. Their special advantage is additional belt operation during an emergency. Thus functions independently of the power supply.

The Young Craftsman’s Prize was also presented during R+T 2018.

The winner this year was Manuel Berger from the company SUW Berger GmbH. He produced an impressive apprenticeship test piece, i.e. a 90° hook-out roller shutter made of wood. This combines a roller shutter and an awning: due to the combination of several motors, it is possible to move to different positions. Both shading and darkening are therefore possible when the curtain is extended.

Experience innovations live

During R+T 2018 trade visitors will be able to see for themselves the innovative capacity of the prize-winning products. In the atrium at the East Entrance all the winners will be presented in the Trade Press Lounge – including the numbers of the halls and exhibition stands where they can be found. The winners of the R+T Innovation Prize 2018 are looking forward to presenting their winning products in detail to trade visitors on their exhibition stands.

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