Shops today must track or measure their manufacturing operations to improve them. This need drives the growing use of MTConnect—an open, royalty-free protocol for extracting data from practically any piece of equipment, including machine tools and other manufacturing systems. The integration of MTConnect is a major undertaking, and can be a bit challenging unless certain preparations are made ahead of time.
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Additive manufacturing (AM) once was called “rapid prototyping.” Its earliest forms made prototype parts—and nothing else. However, manufacturers were intrigued by the prospect of using it to make cost-effective metal parts in production. That day is here.
Tool presetting machines are a wise investment for machine shops that want to increase their machine utilization. Idle machine tools are often indicators of inefficient machining operations, and stopping a machine tool for any reason is synonymous to losing profits.
Industry 4.0 is inevitable, and everyone is looking to find a way forward. But manufacturing leaders who focus only on the technology involved will be frustrated—because the new industrial revolution is just as much a culture and people thing as it is a technology thing.
Claudia Jarrett, U.S. country manager at automation parts supplier EU Automation, explains why robots are more than affordable for small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Automakers during this decade face a big challenge. They are having to invest in electric vehicles. But EVs, at least for now, won’t generate the profits of conventional vehicles, according to an annual report by consulting firm AlixPartners.
This is the first in a series of articles that will cover the accelerating improvement in manufacturing technology.
At a Tier 1 automotive manufacturer in Mexico, it quickly became clear that AI in the factory was a fantastic solution to help human workers achieve greater levels of success; a human plus machine scenario where AI enhances the capabilities of, rather than replaces, human workers.
With vaccinations on the rise, the in-person collaboration that is still essential to doing business, including trade shows, is growing. But challenges to recovery from the pandemic remain. Global supply chains are struggling with multiple disruptions. Shipping rates are historically high. Computer chip shortages are curbing output.
In a high-mix/low-volume environment, it’s not good enough to simply be part of the pack. Today you need to be out front and pulling away, powered by the best smart tech available.