About FILK

A standardised and fundamental vocational training for tanners and optimisation of technologies and materials for leather production were the main concerns when founding the Deutsche Gerberschule (German Tanner´s School) in 1889, as well as the Deutsche Versuchsanstalt für Lederindustrie (German Research Centre for the Leather Industry) in 1897, the predecessors of today's Forschungsinstitut für Leder und Kunststoffbahnen (FILK) gGmbH.  

As an independent research institution and working as a non-profit organisation, FILK is distinguished by its particularly close relation to the industry and application focus. The versatile research work at the institute feeds a comprehensive knowledge base, which is continuously broadening and developing. It forms the basis for solutions and developments for applications in diverse industries. In particular, small and medium-sized enterprises are thus supported effectively in solving their daily challenges and in strengthening their innovation capacities. 

The unique range of materials that the institute deals with means that it is involved in a wide variety of research and development activities: Collagen as raw material for leather, processing it as biopolymer and synthetic polymers for all types of flexible materials and composite materials.

In addition to research, the institute's accredited test laboratory also provides a comprehensive range of services. The test laboratory performs standardized tests in accordance with all current standardization organizations (ISO, EN, DIN, VDA etc.), and also provides a wide range of tests according to technical delivery specifications of all major European and international automobile and upholstery manufacturers. It also conducts damage and material failure analyses and specialized tests in support of the institute's research efforts. Another focus area is developing new and improving existing test and characterization methods. The institute has cutting edge measurement and testing technology at its disposal to help it perform these diverse tasks.


Range of services:

  • Applied Material Science

  • Development of Technologies

  • Analytical Method Development

  • Material Testing and Characterization

  • Scientific Expertise and Assessment

  • Knowledge Transfer and Expert Networks

  • Professional Training and Education