Fostering electronics development through 3D printing (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #126)

The field of electronics has been particularly prone to evolution in the past, with the shrinking of the circuitry and increasing of computational powers. However, it’s always been an inherently multi-step production process which reduces the opportunities for exploration into new shapes, material, and properties. 3D printing is beginning to apply its features to electronics as part of the multi-material printing push. This not only enables innovators to experiment much more freely with their PCBs, but iterations can also happen much more frequently. For testing purposes, this is the perfect combination. New satellites are being developed (and sent to the ISS) as well as new eco-friendly electronics that dissolve into the environment. For many companies, this is the means to a faster product development cycle for items that had to be ordered from China, shipped, tested and ordered anew with a few tweaks. The ability to print electronics in the lab is a very powerful tool.

International Space Station Will Test 3D-Printed Materials In Orbit

Nano Dimension's 3D printing process in action.

New 3D-printed materials are going to space thanks to a recently funded partnership between Israel’s NanoDimension and Florida’s Harris Corp. The companies plan to create new materials to reduce the manufacturing of small satellites, an exceedingly popular market right now for applications ranging from weather observations to remote surveillance.

Read the rest at Forbes.

Collaboration sparks sustainable electronics manufacturing breakthrough

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Simon Fraser University and Swiss researchers are developing an eco-friendly, 3D printable solution for producing wireless Internet-of-Things (IoT) sensors that can be used and disposed of without contaminating the environment. SFU professor Woo Soo Kim is leading the research team’s discovery involving the use of a wood-derived cellulose material to replace the plastics and polymeric materials currently used in electronics.

Read the full article at EurekAlert.

NanoDimensions and Hensoldt Partner to Develop 3D Printed Sensor Technologies

The 3D printed radio frequency (RF) circuit board. Photo via Nano Dimension.

Israeli 3D printed electronics manufacturer NanoDimension has partnered with Hensoldt, a German-headquartered sensor technology specialist. The two companies will use the DragonFly electronics 3D printer to develop applications for Hensoldt’s security and defense division. Thomas Stocker, Hensoldt’s Head of Engineering, said,

“Our focus is on providing our customers with the highest quality cutting-edge innovations […] By using the DragonFly, we’ve already accelerated our application development.”

Read the full article at 3D Printing Industry.

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Unlocking AM’s potential through materials (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #124)

Material sciences are among the most prolific fields of studies within AM, and for good reason. When the technologies for 3D printing begin to crystallize among a selected few, innovative applications mainly spring up from exciting new materials, offering new possibilities. By 3D printing diamonds, for instance, a new shelf of ultra-durable tools can be designed from a terribly hard to shape material. Heightened knowledge of materials’ physical and mechanical properties is giving rise to interesting multi-material applications, enabling complex, functional products to be printed in one go with some surprising features to boot. Still, there is a lot of ground to cover. While we may know the fundamentals of how to print with some materials, we’re still far from a comprehensive understanding of said processes, so researchers will have their hands full for quite some time.

We can now 3D-print diamond material — but not for jewelry

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Sandvik, a Swedish company specializing in mining, materials science and metalworking, has developed a way to make diamond composite materials with the 3D-printing technology called additive manufacturing. The material can be formed into many custom shapes, but think of ultradurable drills, not exotic earrings.

Read the full article at CNET.

Collaboration sparks sustainable electronics manufacturing breakthrough

IMAGE

Simon Fraser University and Swiss researchers are developing an eco-friendly, 3D printable solution for producing wireless Internet-of-Things (IoT) sensors that can be used and disposed of without contaminating the environment. SFU professor Woo Soo Kim is leading the research team’s discovery involving the use of a wood-derived cellulose material to replace the plastics and polymeric materials currently used in electronics. Additionally, 3D printing can give flexibility to add or embed functions onto 3D shapes or textiles, creating greater functionality.

Read the rest at Eurekalert.

3D Printed Magnets – Is It Possible to 3D Print Them?

3D printed magnets are attracting attention throughout industry.

Bringing the power of 3D printing to magnet manufacturing is attracting a lot of interest. Magnets are made of critical rare earth metals, such as neodymium, which are in short supply and high demand in the current push for electric cars and alternative energy. 3D printing can help reduce overuse of this material with its ability to create efficiently-shaped and -sized magnets without the time or expense of tooling. This also helps to quickly bring new designs to market. So what’s the hold-up? Beneath the surface, the most powerful permanent magnets have an organized granular structure that’s a challenge to recreate with a 3D print head.

Read the interesting in-depth article at ALL3DP.

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Why “Edge Computing” is edging closer and closer (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #121)

There are various reasons to be excited about edge computing. It proposes a localized way to deal with data analysis, making individual nodes independent of a central hub. This offers greater levels of security, isolating data to where it needs to be processed, as well as quicker responsiveness, obtaining actionable insights without the need for data transfer. There are still a few roadblocks to sort before the technology becomes fully applicable to all industrial settings. Mainly, these have to do with the convergence of IT and OT fields, enabling easier communication and action. The technology is there when it comes to processing and data transfer. Next generation PLCs address the needs of an edge network, reducing complexity along with installation time and costs. In parallel, 5G connection will enable extremely fast communication for large volumes of data (already proving itself valuable for autonomous cars). Decentralizing operations, in manufacturing and elsewhere, will lead to more secure and optimized workflows.

Is IIoT Edge Computing Ready Yet?

Image of a cloud and edge computers linked to it

Edge computing is evolving because of the high demand to move computer processing closer to sensors to decrease latency and improve efficiency. The IoT device at the edge must be responsible for computing, storing and network connectivity, all in a small form factor. Depending on the requirement, processed data from the sensors can be sent to the cloud either in parts or all at once.

Read the full article here.

The IIoT Challenge

https://www.automationworld.com/Benson%20Hougland%2C%20Opto%2022

[…] getting that data from the edge of the network where it’s produced to the databases and people who need it can be a challenge. Communication for control as well as monitoring and data acquisition can be even tougher. For the IIoT applications we’re doing now, we need a new approach—a new product that does much more than a PLC or PAC, a product that shrinks the middleware and improves security. That product has recently appeared. It’s called EPIC—Edge Programmable Industrial Controller. Because an EPIC replaces middleware and reduces the steps required to get data, it reduces complexity, lessens security risks, and decreases the time and expense of installation and maintenance.

Read the full article at Automation World.

5G’s Important Role in Autonomous Car Technology

5G in the auto industry

The fifth-generation wireless technology is expected to connect almost everything around us with an ultra-fast, highly reliable, and fully responsive network. 5G will allow us to leverage the full potential of advanced technologies such as AI, VR, and the Internet of Things (IoT). Self-driving cars use hundreds of sensors to make vehicles faster and smarter. These sensors generate unprecedented amounts of data, much more than any other IoT adoption would. Handling, processing, and analyzing this amount of data requires a much faster network than the existing 4G technology. Autonomous cars, systems require incredible data processing capabilities and speeds needed to mimic the timing of human reflexes.

Read the rest here.

 

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IIoT is the future of workplace safety (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #118)

The increasingly connected systems in place at the factory floors are enabling safer workplaces. The most straightforward approach here is to don workers with sensors that can detect hazardous environment parameters like air quality and temperature or even automatically alert someone if they are injured. In most cases, however, it’s about bypassing the need for human workers to do dangerous tasks. Technologies like predictive analytics can do tremendous work in alerting supervisors before parts get broken and become hazards. Similar smart systems need to be put in place when cooperative robotics start working alongside human counterparts. Using machine learning and computer vision, safety can be guaranteed as robots can have comprehensive knowledge of their surroundings and predict human actions, as well as maximizing the robot’s effectiveness.

Using IIoT-Connected Devices for Worker Health & Safety

IBM announced collaborations with Garmin, Guardhat, Mitsufuji and SmartCone to help organizations monitor their workers’ safety with Watson IoT. Source: IBM

Workplace safety is important in any field. For example, in my line of work, I’m always vigilant of dangers from hot coffee, eye strain, or paper cuts. But in industrial environments such as the manufacturing, petrochemical, or mining industries, the potential dangers are more severe. That’s why researchers and engineers are exploring new ways to use industry 4.0 technology to protect the health and safety of industrial workers.

Read the full article here.

How IoT and Computer Vision Can Enhance Industrial Safety

Welder's safety is protected by IoT

Using IoT sensors can feed the algorithm with real-time data and allow it to make decisions on the spot. For example, if sensors detect gas leakage, increased temperatures or unwanted humidity, work can stop at once or at the very least inform the floor manager. These type of decisions are deterministic and don’t provide much insight into the future. Another way of creating a safer environment is to use the power of computers and machine learning. By creating different scenarios, the algorithm can sense the difference between what is safe and what is not.

Read the rest here.

Collaborative Robots Learn to Collaborate

An automated mobile robot (AMR) uses 3d vision and machine learning to navigate in a more natural manner past a person moving a cart in a warehouse aisle.

To be truly collaborative, robots must be capable of more than working safely alongside human beings. Russell Toris, director of robotics at Fetch Robotics, says robots also need to act (and “think”) more like people. This is particularly true of autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) like those manufactured by Fetch. Typically employed for material transport and data collection (such as counting inventory), these wheeled systems use vision sensors and navigation software to dynamically adapt to new environments and situations. Increasingly common in warehouses and distribution centers, this technology is likely to spread to other applications and industries, including our own.

Read the full article here.

 

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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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The Scalability of IIoT Systems (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 56)

The IIoT is an acronym that’s being touted around industrial settings for years now. As it stands for Industrial Internet of Things, its goal is similar to what common household IoT devices try to achieve: smart control and monitoring of operations, at any scale and complexity. Approaching the subject can look daunting and many companies think the technical effort is out of reach without any practical benefit. That’s because we’re not making benefits clear enough to the operators. Our current deployments are expensive one-off customs and those that go beyond that are often simple dashboards or at best predicitive maintenance tools – both deliver none or very little ROI by themselves.

While we’re trying to build scalable process efficiency systems using IIOT data at Authentise the key steps to make IIoT really scalable are flexible platforms that can process all kinds of data for different outcomes and are very easy for untrained operators to program. The devices required to obtain, elaborate data and to generate insights are now very cheap and the market is sprouting solutions tailored to every occasion. Now the software interfaces needed to manage the system need to becoming friendlier, cheaper or even open source, enabling the full spectrum of applications to talk to each other frictionlessly. All of this makes for a framework that can scale from a single piping temperature sensor to the entire production pipeline. It’s been reported that 86% of industrial orgs are already adopting IIoT solutions, and it doesn’t pertain only to big corporations. Breweries can leverage data from their distilling operation just as much as Lockheed Martin does from its F-35 factory floor. While we only currently unlock 5% of available data, it’s easy to see the promise going forward.

Shipyard 4.0 Concept Features 3D Printing, Digital Twins, Advanced Technologies for Shipbuilding in Spain and Australia

In order to reduce business costs and increase productivity in line with Industry 4.0, Navantia has implemented the Shipyard 4.0 model, which will apply and optimize these technologies for applications in shipbuilding. The model has been implemented in Navantia Spain’s Ferrol shipyard in order to build next-generation F110 frigates for the Spanish Navy […] The Shipyard 4.0 model will enhance the outcomes of Navantia Australia’s SEA 5000 and Continuous Build Program by helping to develop a sustainable shipbuilding industry for the Navy, creating a new skilled workforce and modern facilities for both the shipyard and the supply chain, and setting up a modern ICT infrastructure that will support the digital twin (ship zero) of the shipyard, as well as for the ship.

Read more about Navantia Shipyard 4.0 here.

New study reveals rise of IIoT adoption in manufacturing

According to the 2017 study [by Bsquare], 86% of industrial organizations are currently adopting IoT solutions and 84% believe those solutions are very or extremely effective. In addition, 95% believe that IoT has a significant or tremendous impact on their industry. However, the study also shows that most IIoT investments are focused on connectivity (78%) and data visualization (83%). In addition, only 48% are doing advanced analytics on that data and only a small number (28%) are automating the application of insights derived from analytics.

Read more stats at Modern Materials Handling.

Breweries Tapping the IIoT to Produce Your Favorite Brew

By creating that virtual environment and installing IIoT sensors throughout the production and packaging environments, breweries that have adopted advanced analytics to process the collected data can help predict equipment lag or failure before they disrupt production. At the very least, the sensors can help to provide critical insights to identify the root of the problem to minimize downtime.

Read the full article here.

 

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How AM can Boost Manufacturing Economies (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 52)

AM is one of the technologies that are contributing to economic growth of countries across the globe. The factors at play are many: research centers bring innovation and business opportunities, businesses offer new products and services based on considerable investments, and so on. A UK review has pinpointed AM as one of the technologies that will grow its manufacturing economy to £455B over the next decade. It’s no surprise that governments are keen to keep the ecosystem thriving under the best conditions possible. This comes into play in a variety of ways: huge funds are being made available to invest in AM-related activities, govt. funded regulations and standards are being drafted (like the FDA guidance on 3D printing of medical products) and defense agencies are incorporating AM within their innovation initiatives. The fertile soil for manufacturing innovation will reward every country with the farsight to make it happen.

 

Additive manufacturing to play key role in £455bn UK manufacturing potential

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A government-commissioned review on industrial digitalisation in the UK, has pinpointed additive manufacturing (AM) as one of the major innovations that could catapult the UK manufacturing economy to £455 billion over the next decade. The ‘Made Smarter’ report, led by Juergen Maier, CEO of Siemens UK, identifies a number of Industrial Digital Technologies (IDTs) including robotics, virtual reality and Internet of Things, as key areas of opportunity for the UK to increase growth in the manufacturing sector. Bringing together expertise from over 200 small businesses, universities and organisations including Additive Manufacturing UK, the 246-page review suggests that the UK stands to benefit from an additional 175,000 jobs and between 1.5 and 3% growth per year by adopting these technologies.

Read the full article at TCT Mag.

Statement by FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., on FDA ushering in new era of 3D printing of medical products; provides guidance to manufacturers of medical devices

Once considered a futuristic technology on the distant horizon, 3D printing of medical devices, medications and human tissue is quickly becoming a promising reality. Patients have already benefitted from 3D printed medical products through access to personalized devices and innovative drugs that have led to significant health improvements. But the FDA is now preparing for a significant wave of new technologies that are nearly certain to transform medical practice. We’re working to provide a more comprehensive regulatory pathway that keeps pace with those advances, and helps facilitate efficient access to safe and effective innovations that are based on these technologies.

Read the full statement on the FDA website.

 

Government and 3D Printing: A New Line of Innovation to Protect

After realizing the boost 3D printing could deliver to manufacturing, the U.S. government increased funding for institutions researching AM technologies. In 2012 the federally funded National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute (NAMII) was launched — a $30 million pilot institute aimed at boosting 3D printing’s use in manufacturing. Also referred to as America Makes, the institute works with brilliant minds from industry, academia, and government. It is expected that these collaborations will help reduce the period of development between a lab’s proof-of-concept and commercial product. With the U.S. government investing more in AM and 3D printing techniques, governmental organizations are now starting to integrate the technology into their own processes.

Keep reading here.

 

This being the last News In Review before the festivities, we at Authentise wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas!

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Approaching the Modernization of Manufacturing (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 48)

Upgrading to better standards and technologies is becoming easier than ever thanks to their decentralized and scalable nature, giving the opportunity to improve by gradual implementation and testing. There are many avenues of experimentation to consider. IIoT applications can be implemented as small, self-contained units, providing their own power and relaying sensible information where the most valuable data is to be found with a very small investment. Incorporating AM capabilities allows businesses to underpin numerous steps of traditional part production and logistics, assessing ROI that is clear from the start. However, the right software can sometimes be enough to jumpstart operational efficiency immensely, by automating and analyzing machine data with little effort and investment. Authentise very recently started integration of SLM machines data into its 3Diax platform. The digital age of manufacturing enables future-oriented actions to be taken at any business leisure.

Powering The IIoT With Industrial Grade Solar/Li-Ion Hybrids

[Small photovoltaic (PV panels) in combination with Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries], two well-proven and synergistic technologies are providing highly cost-effective solutions for both consumer and industrial grade applications, including many connected to the IoT and the IIoT. All sorts of industrial applications are currently deploying PV/Li-ion battery hybrid technology, including GPS sensors and asset trackers, environmental monitoring systems, smart agriculture (monitoring moisture, temperature, and rainfall), marine buoys, and many other M2M and systems control and data automation (SCADA) applications.

Read the full article at Sensors Online.

Sembcorp Marine To Apply AM In Shipbuilding Revolution

A LAAM made part on display at the Sembcorp Marine MOU signing. Photo via A*STAR

Sembcorp Marine is seeking to revolutionize the offshore & marine (O&M) sector by adding cutting-edge technologies to its shipbuilding and repair efforts. In collaboration with three partners across industry and the Singapore government, the company will develop water-tight production applications with a Digital TwinAM and drone assistance.

Read the full article here.

SLM Solutions: Cooperation agreement signed with Authentise Inc.

SLM Solutions Group AG , a leading supplier of metal-based additive manufacturing technology, has recently signed a cooperation agreement with Authentise Inc. Software developed by Authentise helps SLM Solutions customers expand additive manufacturing capacities through greater efficiency, transparency and quality in deploying SLM machines.

Read the full press release here.

 

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Automation and the role of the human (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 22)

Automation is an unstoppable force for change within pretty much every advanced human industry. It has already been reported that it’s having an impact on low-skilled jobs. Nonetheless, there are many other implications to automation are tremendous. The ability to gather data from distant, and often dangerous, environments without human intervention is no small feat, as is the uplifted capability to simulate and analyze factories’ digital twins in order to obtain predictive insights. A changing scenario brings about new opportunities for improvement: IIoT solutions need to be kept updated to new cyber security standards and much work can still be done to improve the benefits of such solutions. There’s clearly still a lot of work for humans to do. Researchers are needed now more than ever to create the building blocks of the automation future, one that is already here but has still a long way to go.

PS: Have you seen the chapter on Cyberphysical security for Industry 4.0  that our CTO and CEO co- wrote?

New Study Finds That Six Jobs Are Lost for Every Robot Added to the Workforce

Screen Shot 2017-05-20 at 3.34.38 PM

Now, a new paper released by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) puts an actual number to the threat of automation: each industrial robot introduced in the workforce between 1990 and 2007 coincided with the elimination of 6.2 jobs within the commuting area. Wages also saw a slight drop of between .25-.50% per 1,000 employees when one or more robots was added to their workforce.

Read the full article at Futurism.

Seeing double — digital twins & the future of IIoT

DigitalTwin

Digital twin technology has been trending in the news for quite a while, yet it should be no surprise that it’s in IIoT where the concept of a virtual representation of a physical product or system will be the most valuable. The digital twin has a natural home in the IIoT. The components of a CAD model–the design parameters, the operating state, the environment–can all be elements of the digital twin representation. Think of the twin as a body where nerve endings live in the sensors deployed on the machines. The digital twin paradigm enables manufacturers to do two things: operate factories efficiently and gain timely insights into the performance of the products manufactured in these factories.

Read the full article at Smart Industry.

Researchers and defenders needed in IIoT

industrial refinery energy plant oil gas

The Internet of Things and IIoT are causing a lot of security headaches, mostly because these devices and the solutions used to secure them are still in the nascent stages of being developed and coming to market. Phil Neray, CyberX’s vice president of industrial cyber security, said even though the federal government has classified all of these as critical infrastructure, “The fact is that all of these devices were designed a long time ago.” With their age comes the issue that the protocols used to communicate were designed before anyone really understood the vulnerabilities in them. Neray said, “They lack many of the features we take for granted in cyber, and that leaves room for lots of zero days.”

Read more here.

 

That’s it for this week’s edition, don’t forget to check back next week for another News-In-Review. Also, our Twitter feed is filled with news on AM and IIoT so don’t forget to subscribe there as well!

Security & Systematic issues in wake of IIoT (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 12)

Hello to our dear readers, welcome to the latest edition of News-In-Review!

IIoT is a term dense of meanings and implications. A lot of businesses see in its wake the possibility of unprecedented ROIs and some are already putting down the foundations to implement it in their proceedings. However, before obtaining the many benefits of data analytics, the proper system has to be put in place. One that needs to improve upon a pre-existing industrial network, fixing it’s outdated vulnerabilities, without the need for a complete overhaul. One that is able to withstand a growing risk of DDOS attacks from a growing number of sources thanks to the sensors riddled world we are constructing. And lastly, but not least, one that can assure quality processes and control of every step of the process chain.

If this is a topic you’re interested in, and want to dig in further, our CEO and CTO have written a chapter for Springer’s new “Cyberphysical Security for Industry 4.0” – due May 10.

Here’s this week news:

Forgotten factors that could take down IIoT

When it comes to IoT adoption in the industrial space, I’ve often found that operators worry about how they’re going to run before they can even walk. What this means is industrial operators let certain barriers to entry — primarily security and availability — keep them from even starting on their path to IIoT. In reality, there are certain key steps that industrial companies need to take well before they even attempt that transition.

Read more about these steps here.

Security Professionals Expect More Attacks On IIoT in 2017

Screen Shot 2017-03-18 at 12.28.16 AM

As technology vendors race to create more and more devices connected to the Internet of Things (IoT) the opportunity for hackers to get into these devices grows larger and larger, as these IoT devices are usually made with little to no regard for security. The fears of a large-scale attack waiting to happen were solidified this week when security firm Tripwire released the results of a study it performed about the rise of industrial IoT deployment in organizations, and to what extent it is expected to cause security problems in 2017.

Read the article and study at Onthewire.

Control is the key factor for implementing additive manufacturing in industry

According to the UK’s Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC), control is the key factor for the implementation of additive manufacturing in an industrial setting. Speaking at today’s Additive World conference […] the MTC’s David Wimpenny explains the most important obstacles additive manufacturing needs to address. They created the National Centre for Additive Manufacturing two years ago, as a visualization of how they expect an additive manufacturing ‘factory of the future’ would look. However, Wimpenny is keen to stress it is not about the number of parts produced in the factory, but about control of the processes. Control of the quality and control of the data is the most important consideration for Wimpenny. As he says, “In a process chain, whatever you don’t control will be a problem”.

Read more here.

 

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