AM is moving transportation beyond traditional supply chains (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 37)

Transportation is victim to many of the issues plaguing many other industries: manufacturing lines are linear and dull and spare parts are manufactured in bulks. 3D printing is not only giving it tools to make many of these steps more efficient, it is also allowing startups to disruption the industry. Which do you think will be more impactful? Startups pursuing new business models or established companies using AM to fine tune theirs?

Siemens To Bring 3D Printed Parts To Dubai Metro

To keep trains running, and passengers happy, [Dubai’s] Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has signed an MOU with the Middle Eastern branch of award-winning automation conglomerate Siemens. The agreement will enhance the RTA’s existing 3D printed spare parts initiative, contributing to the endeavor to become “the world’s smartest city” by the year 2020.

“The 3D printing technology would enable RTA to keep the Dubai metro assets in service longer while driving down the cost of parts and in turn passing this saving back to the customer.” – Abdul Mohsin Ibrahim Younes, CEO of RTA’s Rail Agency.

Read the full article here.

Daimler Starts 3D Printing Metal Replacement Parts for Older Mercedes-Benz Trucks

Daimler 3D-printed truck parts

Daimler has been 3D printing plastic spare parts for older commercial trucks for about a year, and now it’s moving on to metal parts. The company recently 3D printed its first metal replacement part, a thermostat cover for older Mercedes trucks and Unimog utility vehicles. Daimler believes 3D printing could be a cost-effective way to keep spare parts available indefinitely.

Read all about it at Digital Trends.

How an Autonomous Vehicle Maker Slashed the Supply Chain with 3D Printing

Visualising Olli on MakerBot print/image via MakerBot

A new case study shows how Local Motors, an autonomous and open source vehicle manufacturer, is using 3D printing to save time and money. This case study produced by MakerBot clearly illustrates some of the primary advantages of using 3D printing in a production setting. Firstly, tooling costs at Local Motors are down by a half as 3D printing is used to create to custom tooling for low volume production. Secondly, obtaining the necessary tools quickly can greatly reduce the production time. Thirdly, the tools that are 3D printed and used are optimised for their particular project improving both workflow and the durability of the tools.

Read the full article here.

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Our Autonomous, Decentralized Future (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 19)

Ever since the first applications in the Ford automotive pipeline, industrial automation has taken giant steps in assuring a both voluminous and efficient production process. Nonetheless, the centralized framework on which it has thrived does no longer provide an optimal economy for today’s hyper-connected society and infrastructure. Highly automated systems are being put in place to intelligently tackle manufacturing issues, capable of addressing objectives in a decentralized manner. IIoT is a prime example of this, where edge computing combines data collection, analysis and action outside the realm of influence of a central authority. An open source framework, coupled with a mix of microservices is a sound answer to what the future of industrial automation might be. Similarly, AM’s flexible nature is making it possible to rethink manufacturing operations. Small, low-cost machines can work autonomously and in parallel in order to manage various production orders intelligently. Even more farsightedly, Siemens envisions swarms of 3D printing robots capable of subdividing bigger prints into smaller units, working in-situ.

The Move to a Common Open IoT Framework

Loosely-Coupled Microservice Platform Architecture. Source: EdgeX Foundry

In order for the [IIoT] to truly take off, connecting devices to the cloud—or on the edge of the network— needs to be fast, easy and affordable. It is also important that the suppliers of automation technology embrace open standards so that these “things” are interoperable. […] This week, Opto 22 takes its commitment to open standards a step further with the announcement that it has joined The Linux Foundation as a silver level member. According to Opto 22, this strategic move is the company doing its part to “spearhead the adoption of open-source technology in the industrial automation and process control industries, and accelerate the rollout of Industrial Internet of Things application.”

Read more at Automation World.

Markforged plans large-scale digital metal manufacturing with 3D print farms

Sintering multiple 17-4 Stainless Steel Sprockets. Image via Markforged.

The future of metal 3D printing is in print farms says Markforged CEO, Greg Mark. While a number of companies are attempting to create machinery capable of industrial metal 3D printing, Greg Mark believes these “large-format metal printers will be replaced by smaller, low-cost machines working in parallel – print-farms.”

3D metal print-farms will shorten development time, closing the gap between prototyping and production.

Markforged intends to develop a system that allows for rapid production of strong metal parts. For Markforged, farming is the solution for large scale metal 3D printing production. Currently, 3D printing farms are mainly working with plastics.

Read more of their AM farm plans here.

Siemens Contemplating “Swarm” 3D Printing?

Siemens’ experimental production robot.

A report on Forbes details work undertaken by Siemens to develop a “mobile robotic 3D printer” concept. The curious-looking small robot was developed last year and since then has served as an experimental platform for developing software for future production use.

[…] some day, the same software that is helping the robotic spiders crawl the floor while avoiding obstacles and keeping their printing parts in balance could enable whole new systems of factory work – on tasks much more complex than assembling handheld toys.

For example, a team of robots could work together on a new kind of fuselage cylinder for airplanes. If each robot could attack the job from a different angle, they might build complex shapes together that no single printer could create by itself.

Read more about Siemens undertaking here.

 

Don’t forget to come back in a week time to read another edition of the News-In-Review right here at Authentise. Also, come by our Twitter profile to get more, unreported news.

Certifying AM for Industrial Excellence (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 11)

Hello to all our viewers, welcome to this week’s edition of News-In-Review!

Every week we are swarmed with varied news from the AM world which makes it hard to pinpoint a common theme or thread to talk about. Nevertheless, the world of 3D printing made giant leaps this week with regards to getting its righteous spot in the pantheon of certified industrial technologies. Lloyd’s Register has released an updated framework for metal AM parts certification to encourage the safe adoption of this technology in every industry. Siemens have provided an AM replacement part for a Slovenian nuclear power plant, passing the required quality certifications. And if further use cases were needed to prove the point, SSL has been using around 50-60 AM components in its satellites and we all know how stringent aerospace requirements can be.

Let’s dive in.

Lloyd’s Register, TWI release updated framework for 3D printed metal certification

Prof. Attallah steps on a 3D printed metal lattice Photo by www.edwardmoss.co.uk All rights reserved University of Birmingham Alumni

Headquartered in London, Lloyd’s Register (LR) has released an updated version of its metal additive manufacturing framework. Jointly published by research and technology organization TWI, the framework hopes to encourage “safe adoption” of metal 3D printing by promoting certification of parts. According to Lloyd’s Register, the new certification framework for AM metallic components “Provides a step-by-step approach to provide the necessary level of consistency, qualification and confidence to enable manufacturers an approach they can use alongside LR’s inspection and certification services”.

Read the full article here.

Siemens 3D prints part for nuclear power plant

The largest manufacturing and electronics company in Europe, Siemens announces it has 3D printed a replacement part for a nuclear power plant in Slovenia. The part was produced for the Krško nuclear power plant in Vrbina, Slovenia. According to Siemens, the power plant provides power for one-quarter of Slovenia and 15% of neighboring Croatia. This is a significant accomplishment not just for Siemens but for the 3D printing industry as a whole because implementing this part required undergoing stringent certification and qualification processes spanning several months. The news further validates 3D printing as an advanced manufacturing technique.

Read more here.

3D printing saving satellite builders time and money

Satellite manufacturers are turning increasingly to additive manufacturing to reduce the cost and time required to design and build spacecraft. SSL announced March 7 that its most complex additively manufactured part, an antenna tower with 37 printed titanium nodes and more than 80 graphite struts, is performing as intended. […] “We have satellites ready for launch that have 50 to 60 printed parts on them,” Mark Spiwak, Boeing Satellite Systems International president, said March 7 during a press briefing at the Satellite 2017 conference. “We are actively working with our suppliers on complex brackets and fittings that used to be machined parts. There is tremendous progress being made.”

Read the full article at Space News.

 

Don’t forget to check back next week and to follow us on Twitter to get all the news we don’t feature here!

Siemens Expands Frontier Partner Program for Manufacturing­focused Startups to Accelerate Innovations to Market

Founded in 1999 in Berkeley, California, Siemens TTB aims to nurture partnerships with startups to connect thousands of engineers, scientists and entrepreneurs to business opportunities around the globe. TTB is part of the Siemens Corporate Technology unit, which is comprised of some 7,400 of the world’s most talented innovators, scientists, engineers and technical experts from over two dozen countries.

“The Frontier Partner program joins a long line of Siemens Technology to Business programs that partner with startups to add value to our core and future businesses so we can better serve our customers,” said Chenyang Xu, General Manager, Siemens Technology to Business Berkeley. “The startups accepted into this program demonstrate excellence in developing unique and innovative technologies and partnering with Siemens can bring the scale and scope necessary to help their business succeed.”

The Frontier Partner program supports startups in the product development phase. Startups accepted into the pilot receive a year­long development license to a comprehensive suite of Siemens’ PLM software that enables them to develop the new product. Additionally, participants have access to Siemens development mentors and other technology partners who utilize Siemens software.

“Businesses across the globe in industries from autos to aerospace to consumer electronics are constantly striving to get products to market faster and more efficiently,” said Chuck Grindstaff, CEO and President, Siemens PLM Software. “Our PLM software solutions are being utilized today by virtually every segment of the industrial base worldwide, helping to enable the next era of advanced manufacturing. We’re proud to offer our tools to Frontier Partner startups as they work to bring their own manufacturing­focused innovations to market.”

Initial Frontier participants are:

  • Authentise –engineering software to securely stream 3D designs directly to printers.
  • Avante Technology, LLC –providing software that repairs & prepares 3D files for printing.
  • Matterfab –developing a metal 3D printer for industrial use. x MatterMachine –platform enabling scalable bespoke manufacturing.
  • nTopology, Inc. –building software to generate optimized 3D lattice structures.

“We’re delighted to be part of the Siemens Frontier Partner program to bring our secure delivery tools for additive manufacturing to a greater audience,” said Andre Wegner, Founder and CEO of Authentise. “This is just the start of a long partnership to learn and develop products for a distributed manufacturing future together.”

The pilot startups were chosen because they are all focused on solving industrial users’ challenges that are encountered with 3D printing including reliability, scalability, and ease­ of ­use for mass­ scale applications. Now, startups with a focused on robotics will also be able to access the Frontier Partner program.

The expansion of the Frontier Partner program was announced at Bold Bets: Tomorrow’s Industrial Entrepreneurship (And How Everything Will Change) – an event held by The Atlantic at the University of California, Berkeley that focused on the digitalization of infrastructure and how the infusion of entrepreneurship and data will impact industrial manufacturing and software. The event was underwritten by Siemens.

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