Day 3: two companies and an olympic stadium

Our first company visit was at SGL Carbon Company this morning. After hearing about the chemical processes and importance of carbon fibers, we toured a factory at the company and saw the production of these fibers, as well as some examples of products that are made with carbon fibers. It’s amazing how light weight the objects produced with carbon fibers really are. After our visit with SGL, we headed to Munich where we spent the remainder of the day focused on BMW. We started with the BMW Museum which had a bunch of older model BMW cars and motorcycles as well as some newer ones. Next we went to BMW World (which in my opinion was cooler than the museum) where we saw the newest models of BMWs, Mini Coopers, and Rolls Royce cars. BMW World was nice because we could touch the cars and sit in them. Some of the German students even somehow finessed a ride in one of the cars around the exhibit floors! Though my feet were absolutely exhausted from all the walking we’d done thus far, I ventured over to the Olympic Stadium across the street. Walking around the grounds of the 1972 Olympic games was amazing. I’ve never seen an exhibit so large scale before! I only wish I was old enough to have known details about the 1972 summer games so that I could really understand the history I was walking through. After my quick little break, I returned to BMW where we took a tour of the factory. To my surprise, this was one of the coolest parts of the day. On the factory tour we were able to see the assembly lines in action and actually watch the production of a car. From the individual parts like doors and roofs to the finishing paints on the exterior, this tour gave me a comprehensive understanding of how a car is put together. It surprised me how much of the process is automated. When I think about a factory, I envision a bunch of people working tirelessly along an assembly line to create products, but most of the line is actually run by robots. After seeing this, I’m even more excited to visit KUKA, a robot manufacturing company, and hear about their role in not only the automobile industry, but also in the production of other goods across different industries. Finally, after a very long day of walking, we headed back to Augsburg for the night. I can’t wait to get to sleep.

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