“We need to cross limits”

In response to the question of what drives him to find new solutions, Werner Körner says: “It’s the curiosity.” In the same breath he adds: “Not settling for the standard. And simply doing things that others don’t do.” This has been his mantra at Lapp since 2001.

“If Lapp wasn't such a good and creative company, I wouldn’t have stuck around for 16 years,” said Werner Körner, Head of Technology & Development, U.I. Lapp, in a pragmatic nutshell. Pragmatism suits him. Especially in the field he works in, which is all about extremes. Anything else would seem out of place. Werner Körner is the personification of calm.

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After all, if you want to be better than the competition, you do need to go beyond the limits.

He manages the technology department at Lapp, which includes cable and accessory development. Under his leadership, ideas undergo the innovation process and become new products. These are often products designed and made for extreme circumstances.

But where did the major challenge even begin for him? He responds with the anti-static project, in which the aim was to make the cables part of the explosion protection in explosion-proof zones. This aim was achieved with the recent launch of anti-static cables that provide additional security on oil platforms and in warehouses storing dyes, inks and paints or even in corn mills and bakeries where dust explosions with flour can occur.

Werner Körner then explains that low temperatures are another huge challenge. Oil mining companies in Alaska or Siberia are faced with extreme requirements with wind chill temperatures as low as minus 90 degrees. “When our cables connect technical appliances in these conditions where everything is rigid and brittle, the cables must remain flexible. To achieve this, new technologies and materials need to be developed in order to shift the load capacity limits.”

Departure into the unknown

For Werner Körner, it is precisely these challenges that make his job appealing. That moment when a project begins and there are still no answers to two questions: whether and how the project will even succeed. “It is always a bit of a departure into the unknown.” You can see where Werner Körner would love this journey to take him: to the limits. To the narrow ridge between the impossible and the possible.

“It starts getting interesting when you try to blow up the limits. After all, if you want to be better than the competition, you do need to go beyond the limits.”

 

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