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The Growing Role of Automation in Finishing Operations

Finishing operations have traditionally been manual, but automation and robotics are making major inroads in this key manufacturing process. In this podcast, Alan Rooks, Editor in Chief of Manufacturing Engineering magazine talks with Normand Stoycheff, Business Development Manager for AV&R, and Giovanni Bevilacqua, Business Development Manager also with AV&R about emerging trends in automation/robotics; the main reasons allowing robotics to evolve from traditional pick-and-drop usage to more elaborate processes; how robots help the surface finishing process throughout the industry; and how surface finishing operations are developing the capability to inspect and repair.

Deburring in Forming and Fabricating: Part 2

Because it is a production cost, reducing the need for deburring can help the bottom line. In this podcast, part two of two, Alan Rooks, Editor in Chief of Manufacturing Engineering magazine, talks with Dr. LaRoux Gillespie, a researcher, engineer, manager, consultant, and writer with an extensive knowledge base on deburring and finishing. In this episode, the discussion focuses on ways to reduce deburring costs in forming and fabrication operations, such as improving product design; preventing burrs; minimizing burr properties; and removing burrs during the main fab process. Also discussed are how shops can determine if deburring or edge finishing is needed, and how they can choose among the 124 different deburring processes.

In-Depth On Custom Automation

SME interviewed at FABTECH Greg Morehouse. He is the Executive Vice President for operations, Acieta, a leading RIA certified and FANUC Authorized System Integrator. This podcast describes how Acieta defines custom automation and how one should approach the task of engaging an integrator like Acieta in procuring an automation system, whether your shop has three people or 300.

Automation, AI, and Interoperability for More Resilient Manufacturing in a Post-COVID World

Vecna Robotics’ David Clear and SVT Robotics’ TJ Fanning go into reasons manufacturers might want to consider automation and AI. They also look at how to test assumptions and scale with so many variables changing moment by moment. The adage “change is the only constant” has never been more apropos. So, it’s a great time to hear what separates a complex system from a complex adaptive system.

Exactly How to Use Automation to Relieve Pressure

Catalytic CEO Sean Chou explains the difference between process automation and robotic automation, as well as what it looks like to use automation to augment existing workflows. Importantly, he describes how manufacturers can use automation to do more with less—to lessen supply chain pressures that have grown because of globalization and the Covid-19 crisis. And he details which processes manufacturers can automate to optimize resources and productivity.

Automating Aerospace Manufacturing with FANUC

Aerospace is thought of as the industry with some of the most advanced technology, including automation. However, especially in automation, that may not be exactly true. In this podcast, Bruce Morey senior technical editor for Manufacturing Engineering magazine talks with Rick Schulz of FANUC America about some of the challenges and misperceptions in using automation more fully in aerospace manufacturing. Mistakes to be avoided, such as simply replacing humans with a robot, and how to use collaborative robots. The main message is that employing automation to its fullest requires a systematic approach to the entire manufacturing process.

Quit Making Excuses. Now is the Time to Digitize

Cloud computing has become more prevalent in our daily lives and the ability to access the internet nearly anywhere at any time has allowed for manufacturers to become more able to view real-time shop data across all departments. In this podcast, Bruce Morey, Senior Technical Editor for Manufacturing Engineering magazine discusses using cloud-based business systems with Kevin Must, Marketing Manager for Lantek Inc.

Optimal Machining Concepts For Aerospace -- Program The Part Not The Machine

In this podcast discussion with Rick Schultz of FANUC America and Bruce Morey, Senior Technical Editor for Manufacturing Engineering Magazine, current practices in aerospace machining is dissected. Many shops today stick with the tried and true to reduce risk to schedule and profit, but that tried and true is stuck in the 1980s and 1990s. Rick discusses practical ways to get the most out of 21st century machining technology, by programming for the part and not the machine.

The Gears Have It

When it comes to making something move, whether it be a robot arm, machine head, assembly line or more, you need to get the power from where it is generated to where the movement happens – enter gearboxes. Mike Quaas, President of DieQua, sits down with Chris Mahar, Associate Editor, to talk about the world of automation and how gearboxes are critical to its deployment. Gearboxes have been around for hundreds or years, but today’s engineers have more choices than ever in how to utilize their power.