His job calls for an excellent understanding of thermodynamics, construction and electrical engineering. For the past three years, Matthias Etterlin, a development engineer, has been responsible for base assembly for tumble dryers. However, he and V-ZUG go back much further, because he completed his apprenticeship as a designer in his present team and worked there for a further year after finishing his training. The ambitious designer then studied mechanical engineering at Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts.
“I was delighted to return to my old team when I graduated,” explains Matthias Etterlin. He can identify with V-ZUG – he feels at home here. And when he looks to the future, he likes what he sees: “The investment in Zug as a location shows that we are pursuing long-term goals and aspiring to bring innovations to life here in Zug.” He wants to play a part in this. The young developer soon noticed that his ideas and visions are followed up when he shows he has the will to take them further. And 29-year-old Matthias Etterlin certainly has plenty of that: “Bringing an innovation to market means running a few risks. We have to do this, and I enjoy the process.”
“You have to take a few risks to bring an innovation to market.”
Matthias Etterlin also demonstrates perseverance and a willingness to take risks in his private life. As head trainer in a gymnastics club, he runs training sessions and organizes events. “It is a time-consuming hobby. But I enjoy the sport itself, as well as the social side,” explains Etterlin. He finds sport a good way to balance out a hard day’s work.
His working days are very varied. As the person responsible for base assembly for tumble dryers, he is busy with new developments, tests and modifications. The heat pump power units are his main focus. “A dryer has a relatively straightforward task: to dry the laundry. However, the processes and operations involved are anything but straightforward – it takes a lot for a dryer to dry the laundry,” explains Etterlin. That is what makes his work so fascinating: developing a simple solution for the end users based on technologies that can be very complex.
When developing new appliances, Matthias Etterlin attaches particular importance to speed, energy efficiency and quality. “It is very important to us that our suppliers pursue these objectives, too,” says Etterlin. “Maintaining a dialogue with our suppliers is vital. That way we obtain the latest, top-quality components to work with,” Etterlin explains.
The first DualDry appliances are ready for use. Matthias Etterlin is especially proud of this: “I’ve been working on this project right from the start, so it’s rewarding to see the result.” In his view, this appliance has everything he looks for in a new development: a meaningful product which offers the user real added value. With DualDry, the user benefits from two functions in a single appliance: you can either tumble dry in the drum as usual or make use of ambient air drying. “This not only saves space, but also offers the user several different options. I would certainly buy this appliance myself,” states Matthias Etterlin.
The idea for the DualDry came up at a workshop some four years ago. However, it was not followed up immediately. A year later, the challenge was picked up once again, and the first functional model was produced at Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts as part of a Bachelor’s degree project. In particular, the student in question was able to test the energy efficiency and drying time of ambient air clothes dryers installed in the university measuring laboratory. “We would not have been able to carry out that type of experimental measurement here in the company at that time,” explains Etterlin. The collaboration was definitely a win-win situation.
Everything happened quite fast after that. The team worked intensively on developing the DualDry. This determination is something that Matthias Etterlin particularly likes about his working environment, and is also something that characterizes him as a person. He wants to develop a product that enhances the user’s quality of life – and that he would buy for himself. “At home I like it when everything’s tidy, and I want my household appliances to help me keep the work needed to a minimum,” says Etterlin. Although he does not regard himself as a digital trailblazer, he likes being able to call up specific status reports via the app, or receiving a push notification when the programme finishes. “A household appliance should always provide what the user wants,” he affirms. Based on this work motto, we eagerly await further innovations from this young developer.
The benefits of this new innovation are twofold: the new DualDry dries your washing either in the drum or hung up in the room. The dryer has been equipped with an innovative new room air laundry dryer feature for simple, space-saving and convenient drying.
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