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PROTO Challenge – Companies and products selected per year



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Dana Italia, based in Arco, is the Italian branch of Dana Incorporated, a leader in producing drivetrain systems for industrial and agricultural applications.

The proposed challenge requires component optimization of a steel agricultural axle for parking brake release, with emphasis on the use of alternative materials.


GPALMEC, based in Rovereto, operates in the engineering industry and specializes in the design and implementation of technology serving industrial automation.

The Challenge aims to redesign a system consisting of several coupled hydraulic blocks serving the auxiliary controls of a crawler machine, condensing them into a single block.


NTP, based in Polo Meccatronica – Rovereto (TN), is a company operating in the field of bio- and nanotechnology applied to the medical sector. The solutions developed aim to bring to the market various innovations in the fields of Virology and Digital Pathology, in the processes of detection and prevention of numerous diseases and viruses.

The company brings a challenge that aims to optimize the plastic wiring system that connects a work table moved on two axes to the skeleton of the Nano Eye Device (NED) machine used for the analysis of biological samples.


Valland SpA, founded in 2006, is a company based in Piantedo (SO) that makes tailor-made valves for applications in the energy sector. Since 2016 Valland SpA has been developing and investing in the Additive Manufacturing sector for the design and manufacture of critical components.

The request made for the Challenge concerns the redesign and optimization of a stainless steel manifold for high-pressure hydraulic operation.


Alpitude is a new component brand founded by Andrea Sega of Werking cycles, who founded his custom carbon frame-building company in 2015 after several years of experiments and learning know-how in the composites world. The focus of Alpitude is to offer super-premium products with artisanal quality.

The Challenge consist in theoptimization of a handlebar and its support for road bikes, currently under development and made with in carbon fiber.



Bermat, established in Rovereto, operates in the two-seater sports car sector for both track and road, and offers 360° customizable cars. This is thanks to the patented frame and the support of the brand new configurator, two integrated mechatronic elements that allow optimizing the manufacturing process of this type of car.

The candidate challenge by Bermat aims at optimizing the geometry of a car door hinge, the connection element between door and chassis.


CMV – Costruzioni Meccaniche Valentini spa, based in Roncone since the Seventies, manufactures machines and mechanisms for the automatic handling of steel products.

They have candidate a challenge that aims at optimizing a mechanical system supplying steel bars into furnaces.


Double «S» Srl, located in Brentonico, designs, manufactures, and markets horseshoes, forged and stamped directly from raw materials. It also deals with the sale and distribution of other supplies used by farriers.

The challenge aims to optimization of the performance of one of their flagship products: a market leader metal hammer used by blacksmiths to manufacture horseshoes, with a special focus on vibration.


ELIXE is an innovative startup that designs and manufactures machinery for the application of protective coatings for metals.

The presented Challenge is related to a new technology the company is developing, related to the UV polymerization of coatings inside pipes and cylinders.


OVERSONIC ROBOTICS offers the design, construction and maintenance of anthropomorphic humanoid cobots with integrated advanced autonomous navigation systems and voice bots, for the mechanical industry, pharmaceutical industry, and personal care services such as RSA and neurorehabilitation centers.

The challenge presented by Oversonic aims to optimization of critical structural parts of a humanoid robot, Robee.



La Sportiva was born in 1928 when Narciso Delladio began producing handcrafted leather boots for woodcutters and farmers in the Fassa and Fiemme valleys of the Dolomites. In the post-war period, the demand for boots increased, forcing Narciso to hire new employees: the fame of “Sport Shoes” crossed the borders of the valleys and with the second generation represented by Francesco Delladio it became an internationally known brand. From here, La Sportiva’s reputation and history only grew. Today, the company produces in Val di Fiemme boots and shoes for all types of outdoor sports, from climbing and mountain, categories in which La Sportiva is a market leader, to mountain running, hiking and skiing. Recently, the company entered the ski mountaineering and clothing market with a complete collection of technical clothing for running, ski mountaineering and climbing. La Sportiva, whose main production site is located in Ziano di Fiemme, is distributed in more than 70 countries around the world.

La Sportiva participates in the PROTO challenge with an assembly “insole” that contributes to the structural rigidity of the mountain footwear.


EvoPad was born from an idea of Giulio Vianello and Emiliano Leoni. Giulio Vianello, former athlete of the Italian national high jump, is a physical education teacher and athletic trainer. Emiliano Leoni, through the Leoni & Leoni studio, deals with engineering, architecture and design. evoPad is a useful tool for elongating the myofascial chains for restoring correct posture. evoPad will be able to evolve for a wider and more multipurpose use linked to muscle strengthening and post-traumatic and post-operative functional rehabilitation activities. The use of evoPad will be intended for rehabilitation therapists, wellness and sports professionals such as teachers of physical education, postural gymnastics, pilates, personal trainers, athletic trainers.


Lincotek, based in Rubbiano, is a global manufacturer for markets including industrial gas turbines, aviation applications and medical devices. The Group is one of the most respected manufacturers in the additive manufacturing market worldwide thanks to a talented team and manufacturing capacity. The group has more than 1,100 employees located in 16 manufacturing plants in Europe, North America and Asia. Lincotek Additive is a division of the Lincotek industrial group. The division is dedicated to the development and realization of the innovative possibilities generated by the Additive Manufacturing revolution. At its headquarters in Pergine Valsugana (Trento), Lincotek Additive manufactures implantable medical devices for the orthopedic industry.

Lincotek participates in the PROTO Challenge with customized 3D models of a prosthetic implant and its porous structure.


Founded in 1926, PAMA has established itself worldwide for the tradition and technological excellence of its products. For over 90 years it has been developing and manufacturing boring machines, milling machines and machining centers and today it is a world leader in the production of large machine tools. Over 80% of production is mainly exported to China, India, Russia, Germany and the United States where PAMA operates with its own direct sales and technical assistance structures.

PAMA participates in the PROTO Challenge with a component that is a 45 ° deflection of a universal attachment of the accessory head of a machine tool.


The SOLIDpower Group is one of the main global leaders in high temperature fuel cell technology (SOFC, Solid Oxide Fuel Cells). At the various plants in Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Australia, the group develops, produces and sells fuel cell micro-cogenerators for the production of electrical and thermal energy. SOLIDpower is currently on the market with BlueGEN BG-15, a 1.5kW electrical output device for small commercial applications. BlueGEN BG-60 represents the new Solidpower system for the production of electrical and thermal energy (nominal power 6kW). With BLUEGEN BG-60, the company offers the European market a micro-cogenerator with an electrical efficiency level of 60%, the highest globally.

Solidpower participates in the PROTO Challenge with a structural fuel and air manifold that supports high temperature fuel cells (SOFCs).



Coster Tecnologie Speciali S.p.A. is a leading multinational provider of spray packaging solutions and filling equipment. The company addresses to all segments of the market with a complete range of standard aerosol valves and actuators, spray caps, spray pumps and dispensers, with a production network that covers three continents.

Coster participates in the PROTO Challenge with a removable transportation clip for dispenser pumps. The aim of the Challenge will be to maximize the resistance of the component while minimizing the weight.


OPT SurgiSystems S.r.l. is the Italian leader in the production and installation of operating tables and patient transfer units. The company aims at improving patients’ quality of life and facilitate the work of OR personnel by manufacturing ideal electro-medical high-end equipment.

OPT takes part in the 2019 edition of the PROTO Challenge with a structural support system used in the making of the adjunctive modules used in the configuration of operating tables. The Challenge will have the goal to lighten the component by maintaining its resistance to stress.


The Röchling Group has been shaping industry. Worldwide. The Automotive division advances mobility. The system solutions in the areas of aerodynamics, propulsion and new mobility help solve major challenges.

Röchling Automotive participates in the PROTO Challenge with a degas bottle, a component which contains the coolant fluid of an engine. The goal is to maintain the volume and the mechanical performances of the component while minimizing the weight.


ZF Padova S.r.l. is a leader in the production of marine propulsion systems which provides systems and components for all kinds of ships and motorboats to boat manufacturers, shipyards and engine manufacturers worldwide.

ZF takes part in the PROTO Challenge with a bracket that connects the gearbox to the boat and it is used in all marine inverters. The goal of the Challenge will be to lighten the component and optimize the production process.



EmiControls offers tailor-made solutions for fire fighting and dust abatement with the use of water spray. The company is part of the TechnoAlpin Group, which provides ski resorts with snowmaking systems and has become a market leader in this sector in just a few years. Over the years, TechnoAlpin has acquired a solid know-how in the construction of machinery and especially in water spraying. In 2011 TechnoAlpin decided to apply its know-how also beyond the ski slopes and started extensive research in the field of fire fighting and dust abatement, founding EmiControls.

The company participates in the PROTO Challenge with a swivel joint part of the load-bearing structure of a fire-fighting turbine.


FAE Group is a world leader in the design and construction of professional machines for road construction and agricultural-forest applications. For over 25 years it offers innovative solutions for conception and technology and unique for the quality of materials and performance. FAE Group products such as mulchers, cutters, crushers and soil stabilizers are characterized by great versatility and often multi-functionality, are intended for mainly three applications: Land Clearing – for deforestation, maintenance and reclamation of green areas, agricultural and forestry, Construction – for the construction and maintenance of roads, highways and other infrastructures and PrimeTech – the range of special vehicles FAE, tracked gear carrier.

Fae group takes part in the PROTO Challenge with a gear casing (semi-shells) of the parallel shaft side gears installed on the FAE model SFM shredder.


Founded in 1937 in Germany, KARL MAYER has become a technological and market leader and a driving force for innovations in the construction of textile machinery. KARL MAYER offers perfect solutions for warp knitting, technical fabrics and warp weaving preparation. The success of its international customers is of the utmost importance for the company. The company’s mission is to provide its customers with the best economic and technical products and services by offering innovations that bring a new boost to the world of textiles. Today the company has subsidiaries in the United States, India, Italy, Hong Kong, Japan, China and Switzerland, as well as various agencies employing more than 2,300 employees worldwide.

The company will participate in the PROTO Challenge with a drive adapter for chassis beams. The proposed product is the interface between the machine and the customer beam (reel on which the warp threads are wound and then woven into looms). It is the only machine element that the operator must lift with his own strength, hooking it to the beam to then be able to fix it to the machinery.


The experience of Marangoni in the tire sector begins in 1945 and has led the company to be, today, an international group with business areas structured in 4 complementary divisions: RETREADING SYSTEMS, global leader in the development and distribution of materials and technologies for cold reconstruction of Truck & Bus tires; TIRE MACHINERY, construction of large production facilities for new tires and machinery for the reconstruction of tires of any type; TIRE DIVISION, the division active in the production and direct sale of tires and services for the road haulage and earthmoving industry, and finally the TECHNICAL COMPOUNDING division which deals with the design and production of traditional and special rubber compounds, for main industrial sectors, developed according to customer needs.

Marangoni participates in the PROTO Challenge presenting a movement element part of an articulated kinematics. In particular, it deals with the optimization of a lever used in numerically controlled machinery inserted in an articulated context of components that support the movement of mechanical parts with electro-mechanical control.


Vitec is a leading global provider of products and services for the broadcast and photography market. Customers include broadcasters, creators of independent content, photographers and businesses. Vitec employs approximately 1,700 people worldwide in 11 different countries and is organized into three divisions: Imaging Solutions, Production Solutions and Creative Solutions. Vitec Imaging Solutions, the division of the group participating in the Challenge, is the world leader in the design, production and distribution of a wide range of innovative accessories for creating and sharing photos and videos made by cameras, smartphones, drones and action cameras. Its product line includes a wide range of supports, lighting stands, protective bags, LED lights and filters.

Vitec presents at the PROTO Challenge the new Gimbal GHFG1 fluid head with the Gitzo brand. Ideal for wildlife photography and birdwatching, especially for intensive observation, it guarantees a perfect balance even with heavy equipment. The body is composed of two magnesium shells that gives rigidity without sacrificing lightness, the fluid cartridge also ensures sliding movements.

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