Are Machine Shops Doing More Plastic Parts Production Due to 3D Printing?

PETER ZELINSKI| August 02, 2019
ARE MACHINE SHOPS DOING MORE PLASTIC PARTS PRODUCTION DUE TO 3D PRINTING?
Additive Manufacturing and Gardner Intelligence the research arm of our publisher, Gardner Business Media recently surveyed manufacturers using AM to ask how they are using it, and in particular to learn the extent to which AM has been adopted for full-scale production. Though the sample size was too small to be conclusive, an intriguing finding emerged.

Spotlight

Aegis Software

Aegis Software develops, deploys and services manufacturing optimization, management, and analysis software. Its systems utilize the CAD design of a product to be manufactured to assist the preparation of the information required by the factory floor to actually execute the assembly process. The solution then controls the execution of the process on the factory floor, acquires data from production machines and operators, manages the quality processes, and produces traceability and analysis regarding process, product and materials information. The company's software products serve the discrete manufacturing markets with a particular emphasis on electronics assembly manufacturers, both OEM and EMS providers.

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The Unrelenting Growth of Technology in Manufacturing

Article | May 13, 2021

When the manufacturing industry began to embrace digital technology a decade ago, it adopted a new identity — smart manufacturing or Industry 4.0. Applying cloud, automation, analytics, machine learning and big data to production operations created a connected ecosystem for manufacturing and supply chain management, and became a high-growth market. At the start of 2020, the sector was on track to grow into a market worth more than $300 billion in the coming five years. Then the pandemic hit. By spring, millions of workers had lost their jobs. Some plants closed temporarily or slowed production so workers could spread out to maintain a safe distance from one another. Investment in smart manufacturing fell too, by 16 percent between March and April alone. Some researchers predicted that such a pull-back would dampen investment through 2025. But the conversations we’ve had with C-suite manufacturing executives and service providers suggest investment in smart manufacturing will intensify. By 2025, it could be worth more than $400 billion. It’s no wonder.

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How to Improve Production Scheduling: The 5 Crucial Elements

Article | December 8, 2021

The manufacturing production schedule is a critical aspect that enables the manufacturing business to complete each production activity precisely and on time. Allocating different raw materials, resources, or processes to distinct project phases is called a production schedule. Its goal is to make your manufacturing process as efficient and cost-effective as possible in terms of resources and labor — all while delivering products on schedule. As technology takes over and enhances many of the processes we used to handle with manual labor, we are freed up to use our minds creatively, which leads to bigger and better leaps in innovation and productivity." – Matt Mong, VP Market Innovation and Project Business Evangelist at Adeaca So, how is the overall production schedule managed? According to businesswire, the global APS (Advanced Production Planning and Scheduling) software market was valued at $1,491.22 million in 2020 and is anticipated to raise $2,941.27 million by 2028 expanding at an 8.86 percent CAGR from 2020 to 2028. Some software and tools are available to assist manufacturing organizations in properly scheduling production planning, including MaxScheduler, TACTIC, MRPeasy, and Gantt charts. Though there are numerous software programs available on the market for production scheduling, the most crucial aspect is determining which elements to consider when planning production. This blog will look at the five most important factors to consider while planning the production schedule. Five Elements to Consider When Scheduling Production As we saw in the introduction, production scheduling is used in the manufacturing process to assign plant and machinery resources, schedule human resources, plan production processes, and purchase materials. So, what are the primary components or stages of this production scheduling process? Let's take a quick look at each of them. Planning to Make the Best Use of the Company's Resources The role of planning in production scheduling is to use the company's resources to maintain a regular production flow. As a result, downtime is decreased, and bottlenecks are minimized, allowing production to be optimized. For production scheduling, two forms of planning can be used: Dynamic Planning: Dynamic planning is carried out under the idea that process stages will alter. So, materials must be ready, but production cannot begin until demand is decided. Static Planning: Static planning is done keeping in mind that all process steps will be completed on schedule and without adjustments. Routing to Determine the Order of Actions A “bill of materials” is used in discrete manufacturing to specify what things are needed and in what quantities. Routing determines the path and sequence of required phases of the process. It may involve in-house operations, but it may also comprise sub-contracted components that must be returned to the production flow for final assembly. Scheduling to Make Use of Predetermined Planning Levels To manufacture products from components or raw materials, scheduling makes use of the previously set planning level. As a result, it is time-dependent and must meet the demand outlined at the planning level. Each department, product, and procedure can have their own unique set of timetables. Sub-schedules for sub-assemblies or mixes and blends may be defined by department-specific master production schedules, utilized at the highest level to define product timeframes. Dispatching to Decide on Immediate Actions Dispatching assigns the following jobs to be done from a subset of the production queue. Dispatching is utilized to make quick decisions. This is in contrast to planning, which involves the planning of future actions. Dispatching is utilized in both pull and push production systems. Execution to Ensure that all Processes are Carried out Correctly Production scheduling must rely on proper execution to ensure that all processes are completed appropriately and in the sequence planned. It requires everyone to know what they are expected to do and when they are expected to do it. Execution requires knowledgeable management decisions, well-trained employees, correct data in the manufacturing plan and schedule, and consistent sales statistics and forecast numbers. All must be present for the organization to carry out its production plan and fulfill orders. How MRPeasy – A Production Scheduling Software Assist Manufacturing Companies in Scheduling Their Production? MRPeasy is a cloud-based material requirements planning (MRP) application explicitly designed for small manufacturing units. Its primary functions are purchase order management, forecasting, and inventory management. This software simplifies the process of scheduling production. It enables you to evaluate all of your anticipated manufacturing orders (MO). The bill of materials (BOM), purchasing, and stocking are all maintained in one location, allowing you to quickly book inventory and increase purchase orders (PO) for acquired parts. MRPeasy enables you to: Obtain all of the detailed information on all of your MOs Consider MOs as a single block or as distinct operations. Drag-and-drop operations and operations to reschedule Calendar or Gantt chart views are available for monitoring scheduled orders. Additionally, you can manage MOs smoothly. With the production planning component, you may create, amend, and update MOs. This app compiles an exhaustive list of all your MOs. You can track their progress based on the status of an order or a part's availability. Additionally, you can search for, filter, and export your MOs. Final Words How to schedule production for your organization requires extensive research, planning, and analysis of overall product demand as well as a grasp of the time required to meet the demand. Production scheduling techniques such as job-based planning, batch method, flow method, and others help develop a productive manufacturing production schedule. Include the elements mentioned above in your manufacturing scheduling to get the best possible benefits, such as better production efficiency, lower production costs, and on-time product delivery for your manufacturing in 2022. FAQ How production planning differ from production scheduler? Production planning and scheduling are often mixed. But there is a difference. Planning decides what and how much work must be done, whereas scheduling specifies who and when the work will be done. What is real-time manufacturing scheduling? Real-Time Scheduling is a production planning, scheduling, and tracking tool that enables manufacturing organizations to improve customer satisfaction and achieve optimal operational performance cost-effectively. How can scheduling be improved? Communication with staff is a great way to improve scheduling. This is true for all businesses, software or otherwise. However, management should not burden employees with ambiguous or unclear communication, and vice versa. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How production planning differ from production scheduler?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Production planning and scheduling are often mixed. But there is a difference. Planning decides what and how much work must be done, whereas scheduling specifies who and when the work will be done." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is real-time manufacturing scheduling?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Real-Time Scheduling is a production planning, scheduling, and tracking tool that enables manufacturing organizations to improve customer satisfaction and achieve optimal operational performance cost-effectively." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How can scheduling be improved?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Communication with staff is a great way to improve scheduling. This is true for all businesses, software or otherwise. However, management should not burden employees with ambiguous or unclear communication, and vice versa." } }] }

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It's Time to Redesign Your Business with Manufacturing Analytics

Article | December 21, 2021

Consumer demand has shifted dramatically in recent years, and manufacturers are trying to adapt to this shift. To maintain high product quality, minimize costs, and optimize supply chains, manufacturing analyticshas become essential for manufacturers. Manufacturing analyticsis the process of gathering and analyzing data from various systems, equipment, and IoT devices in real-time to get essential insights. As technology takes over and enhances many of the processes we used to handle with manual labor, we are freed up to use our minds creatively, which leads to bigger and better leaps in innovation and productivity. – Matt Mong Manufacturing analyticscan assist in maintaining production quality, boost performance with high-profit returns, decrease costs, and optimize supply networks. This article will outline manufacturing analyticsand present a list of possible application cases. It will also highlight the benefits of manufacturing analyticsfor any shop floor or factory. Manufacturing analytics: An Overview With manufacturing analytics, we can streamline and speed up the entire process. Data interchange and automation helps in speeding up the production process. Manufacturing analyticsuses predictive manufacturing, big data, Industrial IoT, network virtualization, and machine learningto produce better scalable production solutions. Manufacturing analyticscollects and analyses data from many sources via sensors embedded in machinery to identify areas for improvement. Data is collected and presented in an easy-to-understand structure to illustrate where difficulties emerge throughout the process. In short, manufacturing analyticscollects and analyses large volumes of data to reveal insights that might improve performance. Users can also obtain automated business reports to reply in real-time. Why Manufacturing analytics is Vital for Leading Businesses There are numerous benefits of manufacturing analyticsthat drive any company’s production and overall manufacturing business growth. The benefits of manufacturing analyticsfall into three distinct categories as below. It reduces the overall cost: Analytics may save a significant amount of money if used more efficiently. Labor costs are also reduced due to automation and semi-autonomous machinery. Similarly, preventive and prescriptive maintenance programs may save money while enhancing productivity. It boosts profits for businesses: Manufacturers can respond swiftly to changes in demand using real-time insights in production, inventory management, and demand and supply forecasting. For example, assume the data indicates that they are approaching their maximum capacity. In such instances, they can increase over time, increase capacity, modify procedures, or tweak other production areas to adapt and maintain delivery times. Other unforeseen benefits: There are several advantages to the increased capabilities enabled by manufacturing analytics. These benefits include lower energy use, safer environmental practices, fewer compliance failures, and more customer satisfaction. Five Real-world Applications of Manufacturing Analytics Predictive Maintenance A machine's analytics uses aggregate data from real-time detectors to anticipate when it needs to be replaced or functioning irregularly. This process helps predict machine failure or equipment defects. Analytics can assist in determining a plant's capacity and how many products are produced by the unit in every production cycle, which is helpful in capacity planning. In addition, analytics may help determine the ideal number of units to create over time by considering capacity, sales predictions, and parallel schedules. Predictive analytics solutions can automate maintenance requests and readings that shortens the procedure and reduce maintenance expenses. Product Development Product development is an expensive process in manufacturing. As a result, businesses must invest in R&D to develop new product lines, improve existing models, and generate new value-added services. Earlier, this approach was in place by repeated modeling to get the finest outcome. This approach can now be modeled to a large extent, with the help of data science and technologically superior analytics. Real-world circumstances can be replicated electronically using "digital twins" and other modeling approaches to anticipate performance and decrease R&D expenses. Demand Forecasting Many factors that might help in the plan significant capital expenditures or brief breakdowns can be explained using historical data and a few high-impact variable strategies. For example, consider the seasonality of products like ice cream. As a result, historical market data and a few high-impact factors can help explain numerous variables and plan major capital expenditures or short-term shutdowns. In addition to demand forecasting, predictive analytics incorporates advanced statistical techniques. With predictive analytics, a wide range of parameters, including customer buying behavior, raw material availability, and trade war implications, may be taken into consideration. Warranty Analysis Warranty support may be a load for many manufacturers. Warranties are frequently based on a "one-size-fits-all" approach that is broader. This approach introduces uncertainty and unanticipated complications into the equation. Products may be modified or updated to decrease failure and hence expense by using data science and obtaining information from active warranties in the field. It can also lead to better-informed iterations for new product lines to minimize field complaints. Managing Supply Chain Risks Data may be recorded from commodities in transit and sent straight from vendor equipment to the software platform, helping to enable end-to-end visibility in the supply chain. Manufacturing analyticsallows organizations to manage their supply chains like a "control tower," directing resources to speed up or slow down. They may also order backup supplies and activate secondary suppliers when demand changes. Final Words Businesses should adapt to changing times. Using analytics in manufacturinghas altered the business industry and spared it from possible hazards while boosting production lines. Industry 4.0's route has been carved. Manufacturing analyticsis the key to true Industry 4.0, and without it, the data produced by clever IoT devices is meaningless. The future is data-driven, and success will go to those who are ready to adopt it. The faster adoption, the sooner firms go ahead of the competition. FAQ How can data analytics help manufacturers? Data analytics tools can help manufacturers analyze machine conditions and efficiency in real-time. It enables manufacturers to do predictive maintenance, something they were previously unable to accomplish. Why is data so crucial in manufacturing? Data helps enhance manufacturing quality control. Manufacturers can better understand their company's performance and make changes by collecting data. Data-driven manufacturing helps management to track production and labor time, improve maintenance and quality, and reduce business and safety concerns. What is Predictive Manufacturing? Predictive manufacturing uses descriptive analytics and data visualization to offer a real-time perspective of asset health and dependability performance. In addition, it helps factories spot quality issues and takes remedial action quicker by eliminating the waste and the cost associated with it.

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How Manufacturing Digitalization Benefits Businesses in 2022

Article | December 14, 2021

The manufacturing industry has evolved to new heights of innovation, productivity, and excellence with digital transformation. Manufacturing digitalization has made operational procedures more skilled, accurate, and time-savvy. “Many companies simply are not willing to change or think they are done once they make a change. But the truth is technology; consumer demands, the way we work, human needs and much more are constantly changing.” Michael Walton, Director, Industry Executive (Manufacturing) at Microsoft With a CAGR of 19.48 percent between 2021 and 2026, the digital transformation in the manufacturing market is expected to reach USD 263.93 billion by 2026. Manufacturing plants adopt digital technology to improve, automate, and modernize processes as part of Industry 4.0. So, what are the key benefits of digitalization for manufacturers? This article will elaborate on the top five benefits of digital manufacturing transformation. How to Define Digital Manufacturing? Manufacturing digital transformation involves integrating digital technologies into processes and products to improve manufacturing efficiency and quality. Manufacturing's digital transformation aims to increase operational efficiency and reduce expenses. The digital transformation techniques ensure product quality. It also makes work more efficient, safe, and stress-free. What Is Included in Manufacturing Digitization (Industry 4.0)? Industry 4.0 is the digitalization of manufacturing. Cyber-physical systems, IoT, and cloud computing are current trends in manufacturing automation and data exchange. Connected devices, cloud computing power, and the modern emphasis of lean, efficient operations enable Industry 4.0 to construct advanced and innovative smart factories. Industry 4.0 includes design, sales, inventories, scheduling, quality, engineering, customer and field service. Five Benefits of Digital Transformation in Manufacturing Manufacturing organizations can benefit from digitalization in a variety of ways. It can help make the work more efficient, decentralized, and secure. It further creates new business opportunities and attracts new talent to the industry. Additionally, integrating products into a digital ecosystem increases their value and appeal. Let’s dig deeper into each of the five key benefits. Reduces Costs Technology is an invaluable companion in reducing the manufacturing company's expenses in the future. The incorporation of digital technology results in the transformation of procedures and the digitization of documents, resulting in overall process optimization. Therefore, a reduction in labor costs might be expected as a result of the elimination of unnecessary expenditures. Additionally, digitization enables businesses to assess and estimate expenses considerably more precisely, ensuring that budgets stay on track. Additionally, it eliminates andsubstitutes inefficient jobs within processes, significantly increasing their efficiency. This efficiency is translated into time savings, which results in a substantially more cost-effective manufacturing process. Decentralized Production Manufacturing digital transformation allows organizations to supervise manufacturing remotely, allowing production to continue uninterrupted. In rare cases like Covid-19, digitalized businesses have not had to cease or even slow down production. These systems can work without interruptions for much longer than any worker. Digitalization also boosts methodology flexibility and reactivity. For example, if a production plant has a problem, an automatic alert is generated, and the issue is resolved regardless of the day, time, or presence. Improved Operational Efficiency Smart product connectivity allows devices to connect and communicate with each other (M2M). This connectivity enables decentralized decision-making. Many duties no longer require an employee to be physically present. New manufacturing and production models minimize boring, risky activities while increasing accuracy, efficiency, and responsiveness. Transforming businesses through digital means making better decisions based on real-time data. Training, changes, and repairs are no longer issues due to reduced frequency and automation. New Business Opportunities New digital technologies enable the manufacture of previously unviable products and services, generating new revenue streams. Also, new services (innovation or reorientation) are launched considerably faster. Companies may utilize big data and AI to experiment, anticipate trends, and predict about new advancements. These technologies can help organizations become more eco-friendly and create products that are less detrimental to our environment. Attracts New Talent Professionals with fundamental talents in this complicated and disruptive environment are drawn to digitalizedorganizations that are up-to-date with trends and processes. Also, if the change is managed well, it will lead to higher profitability, increasing employee satisfaction. Human motivation, along with excellent digital technologies, will reflect in the company's production and profitability. Dusseldorf@Germany: The Deloitte Digital Factory The digital factory in Dusseldorf provides a flexible setting for innovative workshops and training, bringing together the old and new worlds of supply chain and industrial operations to provide a seamless experience. Specific use case examples, as well as the digital solutions sector, will motivate and encourage businesses to get on their digital transformation journeys, making use of the most up-to-date technologies in the process. Final Words Manufacturing digitalization has a lot to offer the industry, and many manufacturers are capitalizing on this new phase of the industrial revolution by incorporating cutting-edge technologies into manufacturing and business operations. As said previously, the benefits of digital transformation in the manufacturing business are increasing the importance of digitalization in the industry. Transform your traditional manufacturing operating processes with these new manufacturing trends and observe the results that other benefitting manufacturing businesses have achieved. FAQ Why is digitalization vital in manufacturing? Manufacturing process digitization improves overall business performance. But the results are seen across the factory. Digital transformation improves working conditions for employees and streamlines daily operations. How are digitization and digitalization different? Digitalization is a transformation of data and processes. Digitalization is the use of digital technologies to collect data, identify patterns, and make better business decisions. How digital technologies are applied in manufacturing? Digital manufacturing technologies enable the integration of systems and processes across all stages of production, from design to production and beyond.

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Spotlight

Aegis Software

Aegis Software develops, deploys and services manufacturing optimization, management, and analysis software. Its systems utilize the CAD design of a product to be manufactured to assist the preparation of the information required by the factory floor to actually execute the assembly process. The solution then controls the execution of the process on the factory floor, acquires data from production machines and operators, manages the quality processes, and produces traceability and analysis regarding process, product and materials information. The company's software products serve the discrete manufacturing markets with a particular emphasis on electronics assembly manufacturers, both OEM and EMS providers.

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