Customised AM platforms to fit precise application requirements

| May 06, 2019
CUSTOMISED AM PLATFORMS TO FIT PRECISE APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS
The Pro L and XL 3D printers have been developed with greatly increased build volumes over previous FELIX AM platforms. The Pro L can build parts up to 300 x 400 x 400mm, while the Pro XL has a build chamber of 600 x 400 x 600mm. To ensure the quality and reliability upon which FELIXprinters has built its reputation, both the Pro L and XL incorporate highly engineered print chambers, which include an enclosed warm zone and a cold zone.

Spotlight

Audience Systems

Audience Systems is a world leader in the design, manufacture and installation of spectator seating. The company specialises in retractable seating systems and is renowned for high quality and innovation. Audience Systems employs over 100 people worldwide, with headquarters and manufacturing facility in Wiltshire, UK. There are also offices in the USA and Singapore.

OTHER ARTICLES

4 Ways Additive Manufacturing Will Optimize Electronics

Article | May 25, 2021

Additive manufacturing offers the potential to accelerate the pace of electronics manufacturing by creating a number of unique opportunities, such as the ability to combine multiple materials in single print jobs. The technology is also much more accessible than it previously was. Plus, it enables faster prototyping, which could speed the time to market and prevent costly mishaps that disrupt the production process. Here’s a look at some of the many benefits additive manufacturing brings to the electronics sector. One Giant Leap Adoption rates for electronics made with additive manufacturing will continue to climb as people realize its versatility. Thanks to a new project associated with students at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, we could see materials made with additive manufacturing are as well-suited for use in space as on Earth.

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IoT in Manufacturing: How It's Changing the Way We Do Business

Article | December 10, 2021

IoT in the manufacturing industry introduces a superior technology that is coming up as a blessing for the industry. Manufacturers are enjoying one-of-a-kind benefits and returns on their reinvestments in IoT. Benefits such as enhanced productivity, work safety, reduced downtime, cost-effective operations, and more such benefits of IoT in manufacturing make it more and more popular with each passing day. The global IoT market is estimated to reach a value of USD 1,386.06 billion by 2026 from USD 761.4 billion in 2020 at a CAGR of 10.53 percent over the forecast period of 2021-2026. So the whole worldwide market of IoT has a bright future in the following years. “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 Let’s check out below some exciting facts about IoT in manufacturing and see how IoT makes a difference in the manufacturing industry. IoT in Manufacturing: Some Interesting Facts According to PwC, 91% of industrial/manufacturing enterprises in Germany invest in "digital factories" that use IoT solutions. According to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR), China employs more industrial robots than any other country (many of which are connected to the internet in some way). According to IoT Analytics, the industrial sector spent more than $64 billion on IoT in 2018 and expects investment in Industry 4.0 to reach $310 billion by 2023. According to the Eclipse Foundation, most IoT developers are focused on developing smart agriculture systems (26%), while industrial automation is another big focus area (26%). However, home automation is dwindling in popularity, accounting for just 19% of projects. How Does IoT Work for the Manufacturing Industry? The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of interconnected devices that communicate with one another and with other networks. While IoT-enabled devices are capable of various tasks, they are primarily employed to collect data and carry out specific tasks. The implementation of the Internet of Things in manufacturing is often referred to as the IIoT, or Industrial Internet of Things. IoT makes use of 'smart' devices to collect, process, and act on data. These intelligent devices are equipped with sensors and other software that enable them to communicate and exchange data inside the network. IoT-enabled equipment gives crucial real-time data that enables manufacturers or machine operators to make informed decisions. So, how does it function in practice? Sensors capture data from the system and transfer it to the cloud, where it can be analyzed. The data is transferred to the quality assurance system. The data that has been analyzed is forwarded to the end-user. How the IoT is Improving Manufacturing Business Operations The Internet of Things (IoT) has numerous benefits for the manufacturing industry. We'll go over some of the significant benefits that the Internet of Things brings to the manufacturing business. Energy Efficiency Solutions Energy is a high cost in manufacturing. Unfortunately, the current industrial energy infrastructure can only track excessive energy consumption. The utility bills include the factory's energy consumption records. But, unfortunately, nobody can break down energy consumption to the device level and find out the underperforming pieces. Some energy usage monitoring tools exist, but they only provide partial data, making system analysis difficult. IoT can help by giving device-level energy data. The sensors will detect any underperforming devices in the network and alert you so you can take action. As a result, the technology can help you reduce energy waste and find other ways to save it. Market Forecasting Data is required to determine trends and quality of production at a manufacturing facility. It also helps manufacturers plan and anticipates changes. These forecasts can help with inventory management, employment, cost control, and other operational procedures. Thus, IoT technology makes it easier to foresee and optimize customer requirements. Proactive Maintenance The Internet of Things (IoT) uses sensors to gather data about assets' health and productivity. In addition, it uses advanced analytics to give actionable information. These are presented on an appealing dashboard connected to your smart device. This allows for predictive maintenance to be used in the manufacturing industry. Superior Product Quality Every manufacturer is determined to produce a high-quality product at a low cost. Therefore, a minor quality modification can have a significant influence on the manufacturing firm. Customer happiness, waste reduction, sales, and profit can all benefit from high-quality products. But making high-quality products isn't easy. The Internet of Things (IoT) can assist you in this endeavor. Poorly set, calibrated, and maintained equipment are some of the main reasons for low-quality products. Worst of all, many small things sometimes go ignored as the final product seems perfect. Quality tests show the product is fine, but your consumers start having problems after a couple of months. Imagine the resources needed to identify and correct the problem. Sensors in an IoT network detect even minimal tweaks in setup and alert operators. The team might momentarily stop production to address the issue before the production cycle gets complete. Rapid and Informed Decision-Making The IoT can dramatically improve organizational decision-making. It unlocks vital data about network equipment performance and delivers it to the right person. Managers and field operators can use this data to improve plant processes and overall production. In addition to these significant benefits, IoT in manufacturing can help manufacturers improve their manufacturing operations and construct a unit that meets the vision of the smart factory of 2040. The future beyond IoT would be the icing on the cake for all of us, as technology has always amazed us. Imagine the day when IoT and AI merge, and the virtual gadgets controlled by IoT are the next major milestone. Then, the ideal combination of robotics, AI, and VR may reduce the manufacturing plant size and cost while increasing the output to a level that is unimaginable and unattainable as of now. Airbus Improved Production Efficiency with Its Factory of the Future Concept It's a massive task for a commercial airliner to be assembled. The expense of making a mistake throughout making such a craft can be significant, as there are millions of parts and thousands of assembly phases. Airbus has established a digital manufacturing effort called Factory of the Future to optimize operations and increase production capacity. The company has installed sensors on factory floor tools and machinery and supplied workers with wearable technologies, such as industrial smart glasses, to reduce errors and improve workplace safety. The wearable allowed for a 500% increase in efficiency while eliminating nearly all mistakes in one process named cabin seat marking. Final Words While the benefits of IoT devices have long been a topic of discussion among technology enthusiasts, the incorporation of IoT in manufacturing is creating a new buzz in the industry. The benefits of IoT in manufacturing, such as remote analysis of operations, processes, and products, are assisting manufacturers in establishing a more productive manufacturing unit. As a result of these benefits, IoT use in manufacturing is accelerating. Recognize the IoT's potential and take a step toward incorporating it into your manufacturing operation in 2022. FAQ What is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)? IIoT stands for Industrial Internet of Things. It uses data to improve industrial efficiency. To enhance industrial performance, it uses embedded sensors, cloud data, and connected devices. Why is the IoT changing manufacturing? Real-time monitoring of machines and accurate reporting for better decisions are possible through IoT. This improves business strategies and project control. Thus, the Internet of Things has a significant impact on the profitability of any manufacturing company. How does the IoT transform the way we do business? We can use data collected by IoT devices to improve efficiency and help organizations make better decisions. They tell organizations the truth, not what they hope or believe. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "IIoT stands for Industrial Internet of Things. It uses data to improve industrial efficiency. To enhance industrial performance, it uses embedded sensors, cloud data, and connected devices." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is the IoT changing manufacturing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Real-time monitoring of machines and accurate reporting for better decisions are possible through IoT. This improves business strategies and project control. Thus, the Internet of Things has a significant impact on the profitability of any manufacturing company." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How does the IoT transform the way we do business?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "We can use data collected by IoT devices to improve efficiency and help organizations make better decisions. They tell organizations the truth, not what they hope or believe." } }] }

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The Future of Additive Manufacturing: Trends and Predictions

Article | January 21, 2022

3D printing technology and its role in future manufacturing are grabbing the interest of industry experts. In terms of elevating future products, future additive manufacturing has a lot to offer the business. Additive manufacturing is developing and stretching its wings on a daily basis, becoming an integral part of every industry, including manufacturing, healthcare, education, and more. In this article, we'll shed some light on the 3D printing future trends, which will assist the business in deepening its impact across industries. Furthermore, we will explore whether the additive manufacturing business is worth investing in as well as who the major players are that have already invested in the future of 3D printing. Future Trends in the Additive Manufacturing Industry Enhanced Machine Connectivity Making AM solutions (including software and hardware) easier to integrate and connect to the factory floor is one of the key AM trends we predict to advance in the coming years. It has been a long time since the AM hardware market has been filled with closed, or proprietary, systems. These systems generally function with materials and software given or approved by the machine OEM and are not easily integrated with third-party alternatives. Closed systems are important for process dependability, but they also restrict collaboration and connectivity. Companies expanding their AM operations will need to connect their machines and software to their production environments. When it comes to additive manufacturing, using siloed solutions is a surefire way to fail. Importantly, we see hardware manufacturers increasingly focusing on solutions that can be integrated with the production floor. For example, a 3D printing market leader like Stratasys is a good illustration of the trend. In December, the business announced an extension of its previously closed machines' connection.Consumers may now integrate and control their additive production using software programs of their choosing, not just Stratasys' systems. For AM facilities, system connectivity is no longer an option. It's exciting to see the AM industry players recognize and solve this requirement. AM and AI Continue to Converge AM growth is incorporating AI and machine learning. AI can help with material development, machine setup, part design, and workflow automation. So, in the future, we anticipate seeing more AI and AM technology integration. Combined with AM systems, AI will improve process control and accuracy. For example, Inkbit is currently working on an AI-powered polymer vision system. This technology can scan 3D printing layers and anticipate material behavior during printing. Generative design, already generally recognized as a key digital advance in AM, may tremendously benefit from AI and machine learning. It has so far been utilized to improve load routes when strength and stiffness are dominant. It can also be utilized to optimize thermal or vibration. AI and machine learning will advance generative design, allowing new concepts to be completely suited to AM.While we may be a few years away from fully developing the capacity to automatically adapt designs to process, we anticipate significant breakthroughs this year that will bring us closer. AM Will Drive Decentralization In order to future-proof their supply chains, many manufacturers are following new supply chain models and technology that allow them to cut prices or switch goods more easily. Increasing flexibility and agility will necessitate distributed, localized production, assisted by additive manufacturing.To reduce the number of steps required to manufacture complex metal or polymer structures, shorten lead times, and enable digital inventory management, digital inventory management can be automated. These advantages make it ideal for the distributed manufacturing model. We believe that in the near future, more businesses will actively explore distributed manufacturing with AM. According to a recent HP survey, 59% of organizations are now considering hybrid models, while 52% are looking into localized digital manufacturing. 3D Printing Future: Major Predictions In Jabil's 2021 3D printing trends survey of over 300 decision-makers, 62% of participants claim their organization is actively using additive manufacturing for production of their product components, up from 27% in 2017. Many such manufacturers are on the lookout for the latest additive manufacturing trends and forecasts. So let's begin. Increasing Flexibility and Customization Customized goods are a popular consumer trend, impacting several sectors. Rather than buying a mass-produced item, customers are increasingly demanding a custom-made item that meets their specific needs. Additive manufacturing's low-volume production capabilities simply enable personalization and customization. 3D printing allows for more responsive design options, particularly for additive manufacturing. Manufacturers can afford to make smaller batches, allowing designers and engineers to alter product ideas and develop them cost-effectively when inspiration strikes, the public mood is understood, or customer feedback drops in. Materials Drive the Future of Digital As the additive manufacturing ecosystem grows, the importance of materials cannot be overstated. Besides high equipment costs, materials and limited additive manufacturing ecosystems have hindered the 3D printing industry's growth. The market is flooded with 3D printing materials, but few are advanced enough to fulfill industry standards.Due to volume constraints in most sectors, suppliers and manufacturers aren't motivated to develop innovative materials for new uses. However, the future of 3D printing is in engineered and application-specific materials. Various sectors have unique difficulties that demand unique solutions. New designed materials will revolutionize new uses, including highly regulated sectors. Industries will reward those who can promptly introduce 3D printing materials adapted to specific industrial and engineering needs. This will allow more 3D printing applications to be supplied and the whole digital manufacturing flywheel to start spinning. 3D Printing and a Sustainable Future Finally, additive manufacturing promotes sustainability and conservation. Besides decreasing trash, 3D printing saves energy. The Metal Powder Industries Federation studied the difference between making truck gear using subtractive manufacturing (17 steps) and additive manufacturing (6 steps). 3D printing uses less than half the energy it takes to produce the same product. 3D printing also reduces the need for moving products and materials, reducing the amount of carbon emitted into the environment. So we can see that digital and additive solutions already contribute to a more sustainable future. Is Investment in the Future of Additive Manufacturing Worth It? In recent years, there has been an explosion of investment in industrial 3D printing. Hundreds of millions of dollars have flowed into the industry in recent years, assisting new businesses. Desktop Metal ($160 million), Markforged ($82 million), and 3D Hubs ($18 million) have all received significant funding in the past. According to a recent report and data analysis, the global additive manufacturing market will hit USD 26.68 billion by 2027. A rising level of government support for additive manufacturing across regions is driving market demand. For example, America Makes, the foremost national initiative in the US since 2012 dedicated to additive manufacturing (3D printing future technology), received USD 90 million in support from the government, commercial, and non-profit sectors. Given the industry's expenditures and the expanding need for 3D printing, investing in the additive manufacturing industry or 3D printing is certainly encouraged. Final Words Additive manufacturing is being used in practically every industry, and companies are researching how technology might be used in their specific fields. The numerous advantages and sustainability that 3D printing provides are the major benefits that manufacturers and other industry professionals notice with 3D printing.Future manufacturing will be significantly more accurate and simple to run thanks to 3D printing technologies. Considering the trends and projections listed above, you may have a better understanding of 3D printing's future and make an informed investment decision. FAQ What is the future of 3D printing? 3D printing, or additive manufacturing, has the potential to empower everything from food to coral reefs. 3D printers may soon be seen in homes, companies, disaster zones, and perhaps even outer space. Why is 3D printing important to society? 3D printing results in waste reduction and so eliminates the need for periodic waste reduction, reuse, and recycling. So it helps society with no carbon footprint. Why is it known as additive manufacturing? The term "additive manufacturing" refers to the fact that the building process adds layers rather than removes raw materials.

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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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Spotlight

Audience Systems

Audience Systems is a world leader in the design, manufacture and installation of spectator seating. The company specialises in retractable seating systems and is renowned for high quality and innovation. Audience Systems employs over 100 people worldwide, with headquarters and manufacturing facility in Wiltshire, UK. There are also offices in the USA and Singapore.

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