Competition Guidelines

Who can take part?

All students and graduates whose theses/dissertations were approved or completed no more than 3 years before the start of the competition submission period.

Submission period

The submission period begins on 1 November and ends on 28 February of the following year.

Where do I make my submission?

Submissions should be made electronically via the upload link at

Conditions for submission

Submissions should take the form of an extended abstract (max. 5 pages) in English or in German. The participant’s CV should also be provided. The abstract should include the following information in particular:

  • Improvement in expected fatigue life
  • Industrial applicability
  • Expansion of scope of application to include new materials and/or joints 

If evaluations, marks or awards for the thesis/dissertation exist, these can be included with the abstract.

By submitting their abstract, participants agree to abide by the rules for deciding the award winner. Participants note in particular that the decision of the jury is final, and that the jury is not required to provide any justification for decisions against individual participants. 

Participants note that the data provided to ECS in the course of sending in their submission will be processed and stored electronically, including:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Electronic contact details (phone no., fax no., e-mail address)
  • CV including photo of participant
  • Participant’s university/higher education institution 
  • Participant’s field of study
  • Title and abstract of thesis/dissertation 
  • Thesis/dissertation supervisor 
  • Thesis/dissertation completion date
  • Non-disclosure notice (yes/no)  

Participants note that in order to receive the prize money the submission must be presented at the FEMFAT User Meeting in Steyr, Austria. Participation in the User Meeting is free, but travel costs are to be borne by the prize winners. ECS is entitled to print out handouts of the abstract presentations for the User Meeting.

The abstract of the thesis as well as the submitted presentation can be used for advertising purposes and can be published on the website 

Who are the jury?

The jury consists of six people:

Three experts from ECS, two from the automotive industry and one from a university background.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for abstracts “of particular interest” for simulating the fatigue life of components. This open wording was deliberately chosen to give the jury the largest possible scope for discretion in their judgements. The general criteria for jury evaluation include, but are not limited to: 

  • Degree of innovation 
  • Technical level 
  • Scientific specification and design 
  • Independent thought (evidence of new, individual approaches) 
  • Commercial benefit (competitive advantage, improvement for the development process)
  • Other benefits/effects (e.g. lightweight design, optimisation, resources) 

The quality of the submissions determines whether a prize will be awarded, with a prize of € 5000 on offer. Other participants may be invited to attend the Poster presentation. 

The jury will vote to decide the winner and any other outstanding submissions for the Poster session (as mentioned above, the jury’s decision is final and cannot be appealed). 

Participants will be informed of the jury’s decision at the latest by the end of March of the respective year. The awards will be presented as part of the International FEMFAT User Meeting in Steyr.

Engineering Center Steyr GmbH & Co KG
Steyrerstrasse 32
A-4300 St. Valentin

DI Klaus Hofwimmer
Tel.: +43 (0) 7435 501 DW 2322 (Fax 9322)

Jury representative:
DI Helmut Dannbauer
Tel.: +43 (0) 7435 501 DW 2310 (Fax 9310)