The world of additive manufacturing (AM), commonly referred to as 3D printing, is quickly changing. The technology allows companies to manufacture products faster, with greater variation, and often with entirely new forms and functions.
Additive manufacturing, and AM machines, have gone mainstream over the past five years. The technology has advanced. More materials, including metals and composites, are being used for 3D printing, where parts are made from a digital design.
When it comes to parting off and grooving processes, the long and the short of it is this: one, parting off goes deep—down to removing the pip—and two, grooving plunges are shallower and can include multidirectional turning.
When Meyer and Ida Cohen founded Meyda Tiffany Co. in the early 1970s based on a family hobby of making stained glass windows, it’s doubtful that they ever thought it would evolve into the leading U.S. manufacturer of custom and decorative lighting.
The state of manufacturing is always a combination of tried and true methods; improvements (sometimes dramatic) in traditional processes; and brand new technology few people even conceived of a few years ago.
Alan Rooks - Editor in Chief, Manufacturing Engineering
One of the foundational aspects of Industry 4.0 protocols is the creation of electronic “digital twin” models of product data and production processes. This includes an exact replica of all machine tools, including complex work envelopes showing the particular spindles, fixtures, and cutting tools.
Silvère Proisy - NCSIMUL North American Operations Manager, Hexagon Production Software
Who are the makers? Since the founding of Make: magazine in 2005 and the first Maker Faire in San Francisco in 2006, the loosely knit group of inventors, entrepreneurs, tinkerers, and crafters has grown massively.
These days mirror the late 1990s, when the Internet evolved to widespread use—and the topic bedeviled many. But others—in banking and entertainment, for example—who quickly learned the new lingo and jumped at the chance to explore the Web’s potential benefited greatly. Today’s tantalizing topic: blockchain.
Brett Brune - Editor in Chief, Smart Manufacturing
My first experience with additive manufacturing was 10 years ago when I managed a project to develop a 3D-printed, remotely piloted aircraft. Within this program, a 3D-printed parts producer, that mainly printed prototypes at the time, collaborated with a university and an aerospace systems manufacturer.
Jennifer Fielding, PhD - Section Chief, Composite Performance and Applications, Air Force Research Laboratory, SME Member Since 2014
Virtual reality (VR) technology transforms a headset and software into immersive, interactive experiences, letting the user join in the view. For machine tool manufacturers, VR offers two important opportunities.
Michael Edlin - Technical and Project Support Specialist, Mazak Corp.