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Europe: KHS wins 2014 German Design Award for ClearLine

KHS’ ClearLine system has won The German Design Award, which was held awarded once a year by the German Design Council.

A total of 1,900 entries were submitted to the 2014 German Design Award committee and judged by 30 design experts from the fields of commerce, education and science.

“In ClearLine, KHS has a uniform design concept that covers all the machines on a beverage filling and packaging system,” says Michael Schlegel from Product Strategy at KHS.

When developing the uniform ClearLine design, KHS placed importance on producing one that fully met various aesthetic, tactile and ergonomic specifications.

The focus was also on simplifying functions and reducing the number of parts to improve clarity, cut down on the maintenance and cleaning effort, optimize the hygienic design and enhance transparency.

Featuring HMI

The ClearLine design concept has a machine operating system known as the human machine interface or HMI.

In cooperation with the Fraunhofer IAO Institute, an operating unit has been conceived that meets the needs and requirements of people with various backgrounds and qualifications.

Role-based control and monitoring of machines and production lines is now combined on a uniform interface with identical hardware and software.

The result is user-friendly machine operator prompting that employs simple buttons, colored graphics, easy-to-remember icons and interactive handling instructions.

The concept can also be readily understood and processes easily grasped by new operators.


As regards the tactile aspects of the machinery, ClearLine uses identical handles on all KHS machines.

So that the outward appearance of the design is consistent certain components are always included, such as identical lighting and specific colors, with a simple, subdued color scheme deliberately chosen.

The main element here is a grey stripe that encircles the machine at the same height.

“The combination of stainless steel and white, dark grey and silver for the lettering creates a sense of value, underlines the innovative design of the machine, has a clear design vocabulary and makes for transparency,” says Prof. Dr.-Ing. Matthias Niemeyer, CEO and CTO.

“The focus is on the product; this combination stands for premium quality and the design also integrates functional aspects. The neutral grey also provides the perfect background for colorful customer logos.”

KHS ClearLine was first presented at beverage and liquid food exhibition, drinktec 2013.

The ClearLine operating concept has already won a number of awards, these being the red dot: best of the best, the iF product design award and the iF gold award.