Automated manufacturing operations are finely tuned ecosystems in which all components must function in complete harmony. Grippers used to pick and place, orient and hold components or end products at various points along the production chain are key to this process.
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Having a plan for maintaining and improving the performance and reliability of every machine on a shop floor is vital to manufacturing operations. Reliable machines make short-notice production runs possible. And the more flexible manufacturers are, the more new customers they’ll attract.
More shops than ever are embracing waterjet cutting systems. And for the most part, the reason is that a number of customer-driven improvements/innovations to waterjet technology make it even more user friendly, productive and appealing to an ever-broadening array of manufacturers.
With a shortage of young workers willing and able to do today’s factory jobs, manufacturers are taking steps to retain the older workforce already punching in.
Intelligent factories have existed since manufacturing’s historical inception, but intelligence—defined as the acquisition and application of manufacturing knowledge—resided only with the factory’s staff.
I’ve had quite a month, again, covering clever software and gadgets that continue to inch their way into performing tasks once reserved for humans. These tasks range from mundane material handling to highly skilled engineering design. It has made me think quite a bit about how our world of manufacturing and engineering will be affected by all this artificial cleverness.
Automakers are turning to Feature-based Product Line Engineering (PLE), which allows organizations to plan, engineer, manufacture, deliver, maintain and evolve product lines much more efficiently.
Digitization of industry has become an established global trend. Despite all the enthusiasm of visionaries, the machine tool is, was and will remain the core element in production.
Contract manufacturers, aka job shops, are the heart and soul of US manufacturing. Their survival and success are imperative.
In the 1955 short story “Autofac,” Philip K. Dick envisioned a world dominated by self-replicating robots that work incessantly, eventually depleting the planet’s resources.