How digitizing the supply chain could save it, and the world (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #132)

The world of today is ripe with opportunities as well as problems to solve. Fortunately, we are now more equipped than ever before to address them, thanks to new technological tools that are changing the face of the supply chain. In the current state of political tensions and rising tariffs, digitized IPs and on-demand manufacturing through 3D printing could offer interesting new pathways to dealing with commerce. Similarly, IIoT technologies are being employed massively throughout the supply chain to tackle inefficiencies and operational awareness, where the food industry is already losing more than $150B to waste. Speaking of awareness, digital frameworks like the blockchain could give complete and transparent traceability to everything in our world, including where our products come from and their sources.

Want Relief From Tariffs And Trade Disruptions? It’s 3D Printing To The Rescue

USA and China trade war concept, cargo freight containers with flag.

The U.S.-China trade war drags on, with painful tariffs taking a chunk out of profits. Brexit promises more uncertainty in all regards, not only for the U.K. but for all of its trading partners—in essence, the whole world. One huge answer looks to be coming from the world of 3D printing, a.k.a. additive manufacturing (AM). […] it presents the possibility of shipping not parts or even finished goods across the world, but instead digital files. The results of that revolution could be even more staggering than those promised by the new production methods.

Read the full article at Forbes.

How the IIoT will make the cold chain smarter, safer and more efficient

Related image

Refrigeration-equipment malfunctions, long wait times in hot locations like loading docks, and a lack of cold-chain resources in developing agricultural markets all contribute to the problem. Analysts estimate that solving these cold chain problems could save the food industry $150 billion a year in waste alone. Wireless sensors can help by providing visibility at every point from farm to retailer. These sensors are small, inexpensive, and easy to use in packaging, shipping containers, trucks, and warehouses to measure temperature, humidity and other conditions that affect product quality.

Keep reading at Smart Industry.

Climate in the Digital Age

This age of innovation is marked by a 50% increase in greenhouse gases and carbon dioxide levels in our atmosphere since 1990.

This age of innovation is marked by a 50% increase in greenhouse gases and carbon dioxide levels in our atmosphere since 1990. We’ve seen a rise in the global surface temperature of approximately 1-degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels. One of the greatest benefits of blockchain is that it empowers communities to create its own solutions and incentivization systems, rather than looking toward a higher centralized power. The World Economic Forum provides a framework of potential solutions that could be born from blockchain technology.

Read more at Forbes.

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Sideways innovation: unexpected avenues of discovery (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #109)

Innovation isn’t always a straightforward process. Sometimes to even begin to diagnose the problems we need a new perspective on the system as a whole, and that might mean researching curious tangents. Take flying taxis as an example: in our quest to one day see them whizzing over us, we never considered the systemic bottleneck of the manufacturing of high-tech materials like carbon fibers. Insights like this happen when we look beyond sheer innovation, thinking holistically of the topic at hand and not being blindsided by the shiny new technological grail. IIoT may one day benefit greatly from the blockchain, but is it ready for prime time in cybersecurity applications? Should we look at more traditional and effective approaches while we crack the infrastructure that will make it viable? Let’s look beyond the initial goal, let’s find interesting tangents to our research. Old materials can be reinvented with 3D printing, one of the many technologies that give us the tools to question everything.

Blockchain May Be Overkill For Most IIoT Security

Blockchain crops up in many of the pitches for security software aimed at the industrial IoT. However, IIoT project owners, chipmakers and OEMs should stick with security options that address the low-level, device- and data-centered security of the IIoT itself, rather than the effort to promote blockchain as a security option as well as an audit tool.

Read the full article at Semiengineering.

The Need For Carbon Fiber Could Ground The Flying-Car Future

Icon’s struggle to ramp up production of an airplane it initially promised for $139,000 can be blamed mostly on its heavy use of carbon fiber—a material that cuts weight and adds strength, but also adds complexity and cost to the manufacturing process.

Read more here.

Dichroic 3D-printing material changes color with point of view

A miniature goblet printed from the new material appears both opaque brown and translucent violet

In use since at least the 4th century AD, dichroic glass displays different colors depending on how it’s being viewed. Now, Dutch scientists have produced the effect in a material that can be used to create 3D-printed objects – and it’s not just a novelty, as it could have practical applications.

Read the full article here.

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Rapid+TCT – Authentise Summary (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 70)

Last week we attended the RAPID+TCT event in Fort Worth, Texas. We were very excited to present our findings on putting Machine Learning to productive uses in additive (slides are here, video coming shortly). During our stay there, we got to see a host of new 3D printers being announced, as well as new, intriguing AM techniques. The list of worthy news would be way too long, so here’s a couple pieces that stood out.

GE Additive unveils Arcam EBM Spectra H machine at RAPID + TCT

GE Additive today unveiled the Arcam EBM Spectra H, a new metal additive manufacturing system designed to handle high heat and crack prone materials. The Arcam EBM Spectra H complements the company’s existing electron beam melting systems.

Read more about the printer here.

MELD Manufacturing Corporation Awarded RAPID + TCT Innovation Award For Patented MELD Technology

On Thursday, April 26, 2018, MELD Manufacturing Corporation was selected from the more than 300 exhibitors at RAPID + TCT 2018 as the recipient of the Innovation Award. MELD is a unique process for additive manufacturing that avoids melting the metal, thereby eliminating the weaknesses and other issues associated with melt-based processes. MELD’s open-atmosphere operation and scalable equipment also make it more efficient and capable of making larger parts than similar processes. In addition to additive manufacturing, MELD can be used to repair, coat, and join a wide range of materials, including some metals that cannot be welded with traditional processes.

Read more here.

 

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Safety & Security Angles of 3D Printing (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 28)

There has been much talk in recent years about what AM can accomplish. Likewise, the community is starting to take into consideration different sides of the equation. The health-related safety of the printing process has been often put under the media’s spotlight and questioned: a 2 years investigation conducted by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and other institutes has provided a thorough answer to put everyone’s mind at ease. Also, as new frontiers of cybersecurity are exposing the risks involved in a digital manufacturing pipeline, the US Navy is exploring blockchain technologies to secure its IPs and production processes from outside interference. Nonetheless, AM is also fuelling safe practices, enabling University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering researchers to develop nuclear sensors that will be able to withstand the prohibitive environments within a nuclear reactor. Advanced situational awareness is critical to the safe operation of nuclear reactors, a lesson we learned at our expense in the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011.

Is 3D printing safe? UL publishes Safety Science of 3D Printing

Assessing the powders at the CMU lab. Photo via CMU College of Engineering.

The short answer to the question, Is 3D printing safe? YesMarilyn Black, Ph.D. VP & Senior Technical Advisor, UL Inc calls for a “standardized method for measuring and assessing the emissions released during printing.” In a welcome to the study Black explains, “This will allow for consistent and comparative data to be obtained from laboratories, machine manufacturers, and suppliers of filaments.”

Published as the proceedings of the Safety Science of 3D Printing Summit held in Atlanta, Georgia earlier this year, the authors:

“hope this exchange of information will enable more collaborative discussions, research, innovation, informed policy advancement, and science based initiatives leading to the safe of use 3D printers.”

Read the article here and the entire study right here.

US Navy to employ blockchain to control 3D printers

The USS Gerald R. Ford. Image via the U.S Navy.

The U.S Department of the Navy (DoN) has revealed plans to use a blockchain to control its 3D printers. Lieutenant Commander Jon McCarter has now revealed in a blog post that the DoN will begin trialing blockchain this summer before issuing a report in September on the proof-of-concept. Blockchain is an example of a decentralized network which means data is shared across the network and not secured in one location.

By having a distributed network in this way the Navy can “both securely share data between Additive Manufacturing sites, as well as help secure the digital thread of design and production.”

Read more about the project here.

DoE grants University of Pittsburgh $1.3 million for 3D printed nuclear sensors

Inside the Unit 2 cooling tower at the DoE's Watts Bar Nuclear Plant. Photo by Mark Zaleski/AP

he University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering has won a grant of $1.275 million from the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE). The fund will support research into the development of additive manufacturing techniques to make electrical sensors – used to monitor conditions inside nuclear turbines.

At the time of this initial grant, Dr. Kevin Chen [the Paul E. Lego Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UPitt who will lead the project] explained the necessity of nuclear sensor systems,

An important lesson of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011 is the lack of situation awareness of nuclear power systems especially under stressed or severe situations. When the plant was evacuated following the earthquake and tsunami, we lost the ability to know what was happening in key systems. This information blackout prevented the implementation of proper control mechanisms, which then triggered a disastrous chain of events.

Read more about it here.

 

That’s it, don’t forget to come back next week for another dose of the News-In-Review and also to check our Twitter feed!