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NAMRC 41 Highlights

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MADISON, Wis., August 2, 2013 — At the 2013 North American Manufacturing Research Conference (NAMRC 41), which was co-located with ASME-MED’s Manufacturing Science and Engineering Conference (MSEC 2013) and hosted June 10-14 by the University of Wisconsin-Madison, more than 400 academic and industry leaders heard a record number of papers from around the world advancing the study and processes of manufacturing.

Some 160 papers were presented by MSEC authors, and another 80 by NAMRC authors. Topics ranged from electrically assisted forming; methods and tools for soft tissue surgery; machining stability; thermally assisted manufacturing; and modeling of additive processes, to machine health monitoring; laser-based and assisted processes; advances in polymer materials; tribology in manufacturing; and micro/nano materials.

All of the 80 NAMRC 41 papers are available on the Proceedings of NAMRI/SME CD ($150; $100 for SME members). 

NAMRII 41a (8-22-13)     NAMRI 41b (8-22-13)
Photo courtesy Clara M. Pfefferkorn and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, © All Rights Reserved.     SME’s knowledge resources were showcased at NAMRC 41-MSEC 2013. Photo courtesy Ellen Kehoe.

“Manufacturing, the Road to Success,” a keynote by Thomas R. Kurfess, professor and HUSCO/Ramirez Distinguished Chair in Fluid Power and Motion Control, George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, reviewed the Obama administration’s targeted efforts in advancing manufacturing. Kurfess previously served as the assistant director for advanced manufacturing in the Office of Science and Technology Policy in the Executive Office of the President, giving him a prime view of such strategic initiatives as the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation and the focus on identifying the technical and cultural strengths of the nation that can be leveraged to enhance the manufacturing base.  

    NAMRI 41c (8-22-13)NAMRI 41d
    L to R: Tom Kurfess and Ralph Resnick.
    Photos courtesy Clara M. Pfefferkorn and the University of
Wisconsin-Madison, © All Rights Reserved.

SME President-Elect Michael F. Molnar, FSME, CMfgE, PE, chief manufacturing officer, office of the director, National Institute of Standards and Technology, elaborated on building the NNMI network of manufacturing institutes, where industry and academia partner on industry-relevant challenges. This keynote reviewed the NNMI progress to date, including the current design of the institute and supporting network and core functions. The emerging design builds on the extensive public input and the progress of the pilot institute on additive manufacturing (National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute). Molnar concluded with a review of the three manufacturing institute topics being established this year.

As president and executive director of the National Center for Defense Manufacturing and Machining and founding director, National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, Ralph Resnick, FSME, spoke about the lessons learned in NCDMM organizing and winning the competitive NAMII contract in August 2012. The NAMII pilot institute is a prototype for subsequent NNMI institutes. Resnick reviewed the progress on and future plans for projects, education and outreach, organizational governance and an evolving collaborative process.

Career Support
An Early Career Forum was well attended by recent advanced-degree graduates and current graduate students seeking information and knowledge of various career paths in industry, academia, government organizations, national labs or as technology entrepreneurs. Forum presenters from academia were: Profs. Thomas Kurfess (Georgia Tech), Karl Haapala (Oregon State) and Michael Zinn (University of Wisconsin-Madison) and Dean Ken Starkman of Madison Area Technical College.

Government organization participants were: Z.J. Pei, PhD (National Science Foundation), Ali Sayir, PhD (Air Force Office of Scientific Research) and Shawn P. Moylan, PhD (NIST). From industry were: Ihab Ragai, PhD (Hitachi Truck Manufacturing), Ram Thanumoorthy, PhD (3M) and Rajesh V. Mehta, PhD (National Science Foundation).

Restoring U.S. leadership in advanced manufacturing keys on addressing the so-called “missing middle” — the technical and business barriers of scaling up an innovation new material, process or technology for robust production use. One panel discussion provided insights from individuals and organizations working in the “middle” who represent a variety of business unit scales, operational philosophies and geographical locations. Other panels explored geometric interoperability for advanced manufacturing and sustainable manufacturing approaches and standards.

Founders Lecture
The NAMRC Founders Lecture, given by Delcie R. Durham, PhD, FSME, PE, of the University of South Florida, also addressed sustainable, scalable manufacturing and its evolution over the past 30 years. Durham echoed the presentations by authors and panelists in stating the need for definitions, methods and tools, metrics and standards, industrial implementation and “K-gray” education.

For the definition, she likened the pillars of sustainability — economy, nature and society — to a three-legged stool, with manufacturing sitting on top. Industrial environmental performance metrics have improved from being nonexistent before 1970, reactive from the 1970s to the 1990s, anticipatory in the 1990s and, finally, integrated with design since 2000. Likewise, during Durham’s time at the National Science Foundation in the 1990s, there were few grant applicants for environmental research because no one thought manufacturing could be environmentally benign.

A student manufacturing design competition, poster session, UW-Madison and Madison Area Technical College lab tours, industry tours and several social activities rounded out the week-long conference events.

In 2014, the NAMRC, MSEC and ICMP (International Conference on Materials and Processing) co-located conferences will be hosted by the University of Michigan and held in conjunction with SME’s The Big M Manufacturing Convergence Event, June 9-13, 2014, in Detroit.


NAMRI 41e (8-22-13)     NAMRI 41f (8-22-13)     NAMRI 41h (8-22-13)
Delcie Durham. Photo courtesy Ellen Kehoe.     SME President Dennis S. Bray, PhD, FSME, greeted visiting middle-school tudents and their teacher at NAMRC 41. Photo courtesy Clara M. Pfefferkorn and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, © All Rights Reserved.     NAMRC 41-MSEC 2013 conference chair Frank Pfefferkorn, PhD, (left) and co-chair SME Past President Neil Duffie, PhD, FSME, CMfgE, of the University of Wisconsin-Madison take a moment to catch up on emails.


More photos from NAMRC 41.

NAMRI 41g (8-22-13)      NAMRI 41i (8-22-13)
L to R: SME President Dennis S. Bray; OYME awardee Jasmine Bridges of The Boeing Company; SME Education Relations Manager Mark Stratton; NAMRI/SME President John Agapiou, PhD, FSME, of General Motors; and SME President-Elect Michael F. Molnar.     NAMRI/SME board meeting at NAMRC 41.
NAMRI 41j (8-22-13)
L to R: SME Past President Neil Duffie and Colleen Duffie; NAMRI/SME Past President Kornel Ehmann; SME and NAMRI/SME Past President Marvin DeVries and Martha DeVries; John Sutherland, PhD; and NAMRI/SME Past President Warren DeVries, PhD, FSME. Photos courtesy Clara M. Pfefferkorn and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, © All Rights Reserved.


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