As additive manufacturing emerges from a long infancy, the industry is grappling with a key challenge: A file format and design tools from the 20th century are being asked to do 21st century jobs.
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Toolholding for rotating round tools—end mills, drills, and taps—continues to evolve with innovative designs aimed at guaranteeing precision, security, and repeatability. As a result, suppliers of toolholding technology have made supporting the precision, security, and repeatability of shrink-fit, mechanical, and hydraulic toolholding the highest priority.
HP Inc. (Palo Alto, CA) said today it’s introducing an industrial-sized 3D printer and expanding its offering of materials for additive manufacturing.
General Electric Co. (Boston) has been very public about its use of additive manufacturing (AM) technology to build critical jet engine components, starting with the fuel nozzle for its LEAP engine.
In the last seven to eight years, solid-state lasers have come to dominate laser welding and cutting,” said Tom Bailey, product specialist for Trumpf Inc. (Farmington, CT). While Trumpf still produces CO2 lasers, for most applications solid-state lasers literally outshine them.
Machine manufacturers are working to streamline the gear-making process, to deliver a more highly finished gear in fewer steps.
“We are developing solutions for power workholding such as hydraulic swing clamps and block clamps, because the real estate on a fixture is so valuable,” says Jason Betz, product specialist for Carr Lane Roemheld (St. Louis). “This pushes the use of smaller workholding components as much as possible because the more parts on the fixture the greater the productivity.”
When you walk into the Redeye On Demand facility in Eden Prairie, MN, you enter into one version of the factory of the future. There you will see a bank of 100 high-end Fortus fused-deposition modeling (FDM) machines from Stratasys that provide the capacity to build real, functional parts with production-grade thermoplastics directly from CAD data.
How do you boost productivity in a highly competitive industry segment while improving the quality of life for your workforce? That’s the story of Skills Inc. (Auburn, WA), a company that is so unique it has two bottom lines—one financial and one social.
The demand for titanium components by the aerospace industry began as a whisper about 15 years ago and steadily grew to a sustained, raucous shout over the last five and likely won’t quiet for several more.