Metrology-grade laser scanners are expanding their range of applications. New users are finding the main attractions of laser scanners—speed and ease of use. What prevented more widespread use in the past were laser scanners’ perceived tradeoffs. Using one usually meant sacrificing accuracy or working with noisy data.
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SHANGHAI—The $150 million “factory of the future” that the Swiss innovator ABB announced nearly a year ago is becoming reality in this enormous city’s Pudong New Area.
What do you think of when you hear the word factory? Probably some huge space, with machines humming and personnel walking around with notepads in their hands.
Manufacturers of all sizes see an uptick in productivity after adding a factory within a factory via an automated machining cell. The cells are small-scale, clearly defined production units, often for a family of similar parts or a product, and they typically include a robotic arm and one or more machine tools. These can include horizontal and vertical lathes, machining centers and grinders. The cell may also include a conveyor component.