Dirk Michels studied chemical engineering at the Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences in Krefeld, Germany. From September 2000 he was scientific staff at the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation (IPA) in Stuttgart. From 2006 to 2014, he held various positions with responsibility in industry related coating process management and consulting. He has been working as a Project Manager since 2014.and is the Centre Manager for Coating Process Engineering at the Department of Coating Systems and Painting Technology at the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation (IPA). His major topics include the development and planning of innovative coating processes as well as the optimization of existing coating plant concepts.