zur Massereduzierung bei gleicher Festigkeit

Lola Lola

Senior Member
English, UK
I am struggling to understand the following sentence taken from a scientific paper on polymers (particularly polypropylene and polyethylene).

The main problem I'm having is understanding the exact meaning of the "zur" and "bei" constructions, and how it shows the relation between the processes mentioned. "Zur" especially is a difficult construction to translate into English as we don't really have anything equivalent to it.

Here is the sentence:

Mit den Zielvorstellungen zur Erreicherung noch höherer mechanischer Festigkeitswerte, insbesondere zur Massereduzierung von Fertigteilen bei gleicher Festigkeit und damit Einsparung von Ressourcen.....

Is it saying:

With the objectives being to achieve even higher mechanical strengths, especially to reduce the mass of prefabricated components while retaining the same strength, and therefore saving resources....

Is "zur Massereduzierung" an outcome of achieving higher mechanical strengths, or another one of the objectives?

Thanks, I hope you can help!
 
  • Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Hi Lola Lola,
    I think your translation is near the meaning and better English than mine. I'll try to explain the parts.

    ...



    Mit den Zielvorstellungen
    - (ideals about goals) -the sentence is incomplete, so it is not clear whether "mit" is "with" or "using" here

    zur Erreicherung

    - the spelling is wrong and the phrase is wrong. I think it is "zur Erreichung" - this is bad and bureaucratic style in German. It is a verb used as noun. Better is "zum Erreichen" and this results in a verb "um zu erreichen" - "to reach, to achieve"

    noch höherer mechanischer Festigkeitswerte,
    - even higher mechanical strengths (it is related to the values but your translation shows better the essential goal here, values for stability/strength) - "Festigkeit" depends on the context, especially in "Fachsprache"

    insbesondere
    especially


    zur Massereduzierung

    - it is also noun style but better is to transfer it into verb form. It is a kind of transformed verb.
    to reduce the mass

    von Fertigteilen
    of prefabricated components (I like this one.)

    bei gleicher Festigkeit
    - this is a special meaning of "bei", it is synonyme to "mit" and you can use "with the same strength". Note that "strength" has several meanings in English, it may be better to use another word, for example stability, but this depends on context.

    und damit Einsparung von Ressourcen.....

    and therefore resulting in saving resources/in using fewer resources

    ---

    I hope my humble text makes it clear.
     

    Gernot Back

    Senior Member
    German - Germany
    Is it saying:

    With the objectives being to achieve even higher mechanical strengths, especially to reduce the mass of prefabricated components while retaining the same strength, and therefore saving resources....
    ... thereby would probably be the better translation, because you are achieving the goal of saving resources indirectly by reducing their weight.

    Strength optimization of the material is a necessary, but not a sufficient condition to reduce its use for producing these components.
     

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    With the objectives being to achieve even higher mechanical strengths, especially to reduce the mass of prefabricated components while retaining the same strength, and thus saving resources....
    Correct. That is meant.

    Is "zur Massereduzierung" an outcome of achieving higher mechanical strengths, or another one of the objectives?
    "Massereduzierung" is the final goal which is intended to be reached by increasing strength.
     

    Sowka

    Forera und Moderatorin
    German, Northern Germany
    Hello :)

    I have one small additional question.
    Is "strength" well defined in this context or can it be ambiguous?
    I think that "strength" is sufficient here (in the second part of the sentence) because it has been defined as the "mechanical strength" before.
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    So it is clear in English that a mechanical strength it is not an active strength (German: Stärke, Kraft) but a resistance against deforming (firmness and stability).
    (It was not clear to me. I thought it can have both meanings.)
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Thank you. I understand.

    There shall be a very similar text:
    Mit den Zielvorstellungen zur Erreicherung noch höherer mechanischer Kräfte ...

    Here I cannot use "Strength" but have to use "Force", haven't I?

    With the objectives being to achieve even higher mechanical strengths ...

    Would this be:

    With the objectives being to achieve even higher mechanical forces ... ?

    This is because "strength" can be "force" but is excluded here according to our discussion.
     

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    Yes, Kraft (dt) is force in Newtonian mechanics. However, as far as I know, you would speak of stronger and weaker forces rather than higher or lower. But this would be a thread for the English forum rather our German forum.
     

    Lola Lola

    Senior Member
    English, UK
    Could Festigkeit in this context be referring to "stability" rather than strength? And how would this relate to "Festigkeitswerte"?
     

    Kajjo

    Senior Member
    http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Festigkeit said:
    "Festigkeit ist eine Werkstoffeigenschaft und beschreibt den mechanischen Widerstand, den ein Werkstoff einer plastischen Verformung oder Trennung entgegensetzt."
    Wikipedia, too, refers to the English article "material strength", so I stay with the translation Festigkeit = strength.

    Stability usually refers to systems in equilibrium or the consequence of bringing them out of equilibrium. I do not think that it could be meant here. In laymen's terms maybe it is somewhat about stability, but more exact it is about strength, about resistance to stress, strain or related mechanical influences.
     

    manfy

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    Since you seem to be going into the finer details, I have to point out that the source sentence is actually wrong. It should read:

    Mit den Zielvorstellungen zur Erreicherung noch höherer mechanischer Festigkeitswerte, insbesondere zur Massereduzierung von Fertigteilen bei gleicher Festigkeit Belastbarkeit und damit Einsparung von Ressourcen.....

    * 'Festigkeit' is a material property [unit: N/mm2]. So, whether the final part made from this material is 2mm or 20mm thick, it does not change the Festigkeit in N/mm2
    * 'Belastbarkeit' (load capacity) of a final product, on the other hand, describes the maximum force in Newtons that can be applied before that part fails. (i.e. Belastbarkeit = Festigkeit x Querschnitt)

    These engineering lingo terms are very general, collective terms and they are used where the specifics are less important or less desirable. (e.g. Festigkeit could be Zug-, Druck-, Scher-, Torsions-, Biege-Festigkeit and many more; Belastbarkeit could be Zug-, Druck-, Scher-Kraft, etc. in any direction).

    In the end, the choice of words depends on the target audience, that document is intended for. If you need to translate such documents without having a degree or experience in that specific field, then it's usually better to use more general (but maybe ambiguous) terms, rather than specific ones which could be outright wrong!

    BTW:
    Fertigteile = prefabricated components ???? In English I would use that term primarily in civil engineering or heavy industry, where large parts are being prefabricated by different suppliers and then assembled at the customer's site, don't you think?
    If the document is about engineering plastics that can be used in a multitude of industries and end products then I'd rather go with 'finished parts' or similar.
    The German term within your sentence can mean both, either 'Fertigteil' (für ein Fertigteilhaus) or 'fertiges (Bau-)Teil' (aus diesem Polymer-Material).
     

    manfy

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    I think, it wouldn't make sense, trying to translate the wrongly phrased original.

    The statement would create an oxymoron in German and in English. That's easy to see when you reduce the sentence:
    * [...] zur Erreichung noch höherer mechanischer Festigkeitswerte [...] bei gleicher Festigkeit [...]
    * [...] to achieve even higher mechanical strengths [...] while retaining the same strength [...]

    One might argue that the first occurence of strength refers to the material property, whereas the second one refers to the strength of the finished part.
    Except, there is no such parameter as 'strength' for a finished part! The N/mm2 value of the finished part depends on the material strength, the area of cross section of the part, the geometric profile of that cross section and various parameters of the applied force. Theoretically, it could be calculated, but for what? Load capacity in Newtons is all that's needed.

    In colloquial, spoken language it might be fine to use 'strength' the way it was done, because for normal people without much knowledge of - or interest in - physics or mechanical engineering, such terms like hardness, stiffness, stability, etc. are pretty much synonymous to strength.

    However, it is not acceptable for a published scientific report or a marketing datasheet, that is ONLY read by people with in-depth knowledge or people who get paid to be interested!
    If there were multiple such mistakes in that paper it would seriously undermine the credibility of the whole document.

    PS: It has to be noted, that the English language (or English speaking engineers) are a bit more forgiving with such mistakes than German ones...usually!
     
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