Did You Check These Real-life Lean Manufacturing Examples?

Bhagyashri Kambale | March 29, 2022
LEAN MANUFACTURING
The lean manufacturing process is the most time-tested, dependable, and proven method of manufacturing. It has helped numerous notable firms worldwide to reduce production waste and optimize their overall manufacturing operations. Many lean tools, such as 5S lean manufacturing, JIT, and Kanban, have helped manufacturers be more productive and efficient than ever before.

“Lean is a way of thinking, not a list of things to do.”

– Shigeo Shingo, a Japanese Industrial Engineer

In 2014, 29% of manufacturers had implemented lean manufacturing or intended to do so. (Source: MAXIML)

This article highlights lean manufacturing principles and the most commonly used lean tools. We will also look into the three lean manufacturing examples that will help us understand how lean manufacturing techniques may help manufacturing organizations become more successful.


Lean Manufacturing Principles


Value

Value is always determined in terms of the customer's requirements for a particular product. For instance, what is the manufacturing and delivery schedule? What is the cost? What more critical requirements or expectations must be met? This information is vital when it comes to defining value.


Value Stream

The next step after value is to map the "value stream," or all the steps and processes involved in creating a given product, from raw materials to delivery to the client. Value-stream mapping outlines all the steps that move a product or service through a process. Processes might be in design or customer service. The objective is to "map" the movement of material or product through the process on one sheet. The purpose is to identify and eliminate unwanted steps. Some call it process re-engineering. This practice also helps to understand the entire business function.


Flow

After removing waste from the value stream, the next step is to ensure there are no interruptions, delays, or bottlenecks. "Sequence the value-creating steps closely so the product or service flows smoothly toward the customer," LEI suggests. This may require breaking down silo thinking and becoming cross-functional across all departments, which can be difficult for lean projects to accomplish. However, studies indicate that this can significantly improve efficiency and productivity, often by up to 50%.


Pull

With better flow, the time it takes to get a product to market (or to the customer) can be greatly reduced. As a result, "just in time" manufacturing or delivery becomes simpler. This means that the consumer has the ability to "pull" the product from you at any time (often in weeks instead of months). As a result, the manufacturer or provider and the client save money by not having to build things or store resources in advance.


Perfection

Developing lean thinking and process optimization part of your organizational culture is the most crucial step. Remember that lean is not a static system that takes continual effort and care to perfect. Lean should be implemented by all employees. Experts claim a process is not fully lean until it has been value-stream mapped a dozen times.


The Most Used Lean Manufacturing Tools

Lean manufacturing employs a variety of lean tools to optimize output and efficiency by making the most use of available resources. Lean manufacturing seeks to improve processes by demanding less work, time, and resources. Specific lean tools may be more suited to one type of business than another. On the other hand, 5S lean manufacturing, Kaizen, Kanban, Value Stream Mapping, and Focus PDCA are among the most useful lean tools.


Three Examples of Lean Manufacturing


Toyota

Toyota was the first big company to adopt the lean manufacturing process. They have mastered lean manufacturing techniques to minimize defective products that do not meet client expectations. Toyota achieves this goal through two key methods. The first is Jidoka, which means "mechanization with human assistance." While some portions of the operation are automated, humans regularly examine the product's quality. There are extra programs in the system that can shut down the machines if there is a problem.

The second method is called the JIT model. Individual cars can be made as per order using JIT inside the Toyota Production System, but each component must fit precisely the first time due to a lack of alternatives. Therefore, pre-existing production issues cannot be overlooked and resolved quickly.


Intel

Computer chip maker Intel implemented lean manufacturing techniques to produce better products with zero defects. This approach has helped to minimize the manufacturing time from three months to ten days. Intel eventually learned that manufacturing low-quality things would not enhance earnings or customer satisfaction. Instead, both parties gain from quality control and waste reduction methods. This is especially true in the electronics business, where products are constantly updated.


John Deere

John Deere has implemented a lean manufacturing process. Many of their quality control techniques are completely automated, allowing for faster inspection of more parts. This means more products flow out of the door each day, and the consumer gets a better deal. These controls also monitor how each part of their products is made, so they don't overproduce and waste valuable resources.


Final Word

Being successful with lean manufacturing techniques is a notable achievement for any organization because it involves eliminating redundant efforts, finances, and processes that have hindered your business's growth for an extended period. Recognize your business requirements and select the appropriate lean tool. Ultimately, lean is not just a method; it is an attitude that every manufacturing organization must adopt.


FAQ


What is the objective of lean manufacturing?

Lean manufacturing aims to improve product quality, cut down on waste, speed up production, and save money.


What are the drawbacks to lean production?

Using lean techniques reduces the error margin. Late supply deliveries can lead to shortages of raw materials and delayed deliveries. This flaw can damage client relationships, drive customers to competitors, and cost you money.


Is lean still applicable today?

Lean manufacturing is relevant now and will be for years to come. So, this might be an exciting opportunity for lean manufacturing to evolve in a new space with new resources.

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Conagra Brands

Conagra Brands is a leader among top brands in North America, and is committed to providing great food today’s consumers want.

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A Guide to Warehouse Inventory Management: Best Practices, Challenges & Solutions

Article | February 3, 2022

Inventory management in warehouse is a never-ending cycle till the time the business is in operation. As your business expands, so does the amount of effort and money spent on warehouse inventory management. After all, the more orders you receive, the more time you'll need to spend on inventory replenishment and warehouse organization. Fortunately, there are several methods to enhance the warehouse inventory management process, from more efficient storage to the use of automation and other solutions that can minimize manual labor, human error, and total expenses. In this article, we will look at some of the key challenges that manufacturers face while managing their warehouse inventory and their solutions. Furthermore, we see the best practices for optimizing your warehouse inventory management that would ultimately enhance the efficiency of business operations. Warehousing and Inventory Management Best Practices Appoint a Warehouse Supervisor Managing an effective warehouse begins with hiring a qualified manager. Your organization should choose a warehouse manager with substantial expertise in operating a warehouse comparable to the one you will be operating. A skilled warehouse manager ensures that everything runs smoothly. He/she must be organized, knowledgeable about warehouse operations and technology, and function as a quarterback for the warehouse's rest of the team. Your warehouse manager will monitor your staff to ensure things are correctly scanned and cataloged. Additionally, they will frequently engage with your warehouse inventory management software to keep a bird's eye perspective on your goods. Finally, your warehouse manager will be responsible for handling any inconsistencies or challenges that develop, so that they respond dynamically anytime your warehouse staff discovers a problem. Some attributes to look out for in your warehouse manager are: organizational ability, precision, tech-savvy, safety-mindedness, leadership, integrity, and a sense of calm. Plan the Warehouse Layout The structural layout of your warehouse will either assist or limit your warehouse workers' ability to promptly pick, load, and send items out in response to a sale or transfer request. By dividing warehouses into zones or slots and numbering aisles and bins, warehouse employees may more easily navigate the storage facility. While not all warehouses are designed the same way, an organized warehouse is necessary for effective operations. The way you plan your warehouse space will depend on the things you store. For example, a warehouse containing huge machinery may have specialized zones, whereas a warehouse storing small retail products will have bins and aisles. Optimizing your warehouse plan will not only enhance space utilization but also increase warehouse productivity and save you money. Consequently, this helps you reach your company goals and satisfy your customers with on-time deliveries. Create a Workflow Maintaining an efficient inventory control warehouse is critical to avoid bottlenecks and out-of-stock situations. In addition, a streamlined inventory workflow can assist you in keeping your buyers satisfied and convert them into loyal customers. So, how would you establish an efficient workflow? Here are some helpful warehousing and inventory management suggestions: Make an attempt to estimate future sales. Use tools that assess old sales and forecast future sales for you. Set a minimum production quantity for each product. This helps to avoid losing sales and income due to product shortages. Set a maximum stock limit. This assists in avoiding overstocking a product, which can result in considerable losses. Ensure that products are delivered out in the order in which they were received (first in, first out) to maintain product freshness and reduce shelf life. Use a warehouse inventory management system. This is the simplest and most effective method of maintaining a steady inventory flow. Invest in Warehouse Inventory Software A warehouse management system (WMS) is a software solution designed to automate, optimize, and support the operations and activities of a business warehouse. It can automate and simplify a variety of warehouse management operations and maintain a real-time inventory record of all available goods. When goods arrive and depart the warehouse, your warehouse inventory management system will accurately show all inventories and its whereabouts. Warehouse inventory management software may be configured to automatically replenish stock when a predefined minimum number of items are reached. The finest software analyzes previous sales data automatically to identify the appropriate minimum number for automated reordering. It also determines the minimum quantities at which each product should be replenished. Warehouse Inventory Challenges and Solutions Limited Visibility & Solution Inventory visibility refers to the ability to view and track inventory in real-time. It also helps gain insight into the exact number of units of each SKU in stock at all locations, along with its location within a warehouse or fulfillment center. When inventory is difficult to identify or find in your warehouse, it can result in incomplete, inaccurate, or delayed shipments. Receiving and locating the correct stock is essential for smooth running warehouse operations as it helps to maintain a positive customer experience. Solution: To optimize purchasing and receiving operations, increase accuracy, and eliminate missing goods. Including photos with correct product descriptions in your inventory database can also be helpful. Investing in inventory management software is, once again, the best way to overcome low inventory visibility. These systems are meant to automate the process of inventory management across the supply chain, all from a single dashboard. The adoption of digital and data-driven procedures allows businesses to have a comprehensive view of inventory management in warehouse. Inventory Depletion & Solution Unsold goods are considered a loss in inventory. Multiple factors contribute to inventory depletion or shrinkage. Sometimes stocks can become obsolete or out-of-date before being sold. In addition, spoilage, damage, or theft are a few other reasons for inventory loss and can be referred to as a serious supply chain issue. Therefore, it is necessary to identify, track, and measure trouble areas. Solution: Using a third-party logistics (3PL) or fulfillment service (fulfillment solution) increases security. To reduce inventory shrinkage, they'll take the necessary steps to keep your goods secure. They'll provide you with the technology and reports you need to keep an eye on stock levels. Using an Old Excel Spreadsheet & Solution The expansion of a company will be hampered if inventory is managed manually using paper-based techniques. A lack of digitalization and an ineffective inventory management procedure yield dismal outcomes when sales volumes rise and inventory increases. It is time to replace excel spreadsheets with newer technologies like business intelligence and to analyze and track large businesses better. Solution: Having an inventory management system will make the process more efficient and provide you with real-time data. Businesses utilize various inventory management systems, depending on their type of operations. Manual inventory, periodic inventory, and perpetual inventory are three examples of inventory management approaches. Another option is to use one of the several software programs such as Upserve, Megaventory, and Orderhive for inventory management that are currently available on the market. Warehouse Space Management & Solution A warehouse layout that facilitates the simple selection, packaging, and shipping of orders is a sign of efficient warehouse space management. Designing a functional warehouse layout is critical since it directly influences the efficiency and productivity of your warehouse. A well-designed warehouse layout enables easy access to stored goods, saves travel time, and increases order fulfillment rates. Solution: Optimize storage space and inventory flow by utilizing inventory management systems that include warehouse management features. Automate order picking, packaging, and shipping operations by categorizing inventory storage by shelf, bin, and compartment. Communication Difficulties & Solution Collaboration and communication are critical in the management of warehouse. Lack of communication in a warehouse can result in disorganized operations, resulting in errors and inefficient processes. In practice, this might imply that stock is misplaced or delayed, resulting in a negative customer experience. Solution: Warehouse workers should be equipped with phones and radios for one-on-one communication. Mobile devices are the foundation of portable communication, which is critical for warehouse employees who are always on the move. Supervisors and managers must have a PA system, also known as a public address system, to make announcements in an emergency or when loading and unloading goods. Another option to simplify warehouse operations is to distribute wearable GPS devices to your employees. Using cloud-based software to manage inventory also provides the best solution for checking stock and communicating data across departments. Final Words Warehousing and inventory management affect every step of your e-commerce supply chain, from receiving and storing goods to fulfilling and shipping orders. Poor warehouse inventory management may lead to higher logistics costs, dissatisfied warehouse personnel, more picking and packing errors, delayed shipments, and disappointed customers. However, with some of the best practices mentioned above, you may improve your warehouse inventory management. You can take advantage of the solutions to most of the key challenges listed above. FAQ What are the four ways to control inventory? The four key ways of controlling inventory are as follows: just-in-time delivery, downloading inventory software, stock control, and lowering carrying costs. How is inventory management different from warehouse management? The primary difference between the two systems is the human component. While inventory management is concerned exclusively with merchandise or stock, warehouse management includes the administration of workers as well as shipping or shipping professionals who work in a warehouse setting. What are the four inventory management types? Primarily, inventory management is grouped into four types: Raw materials Works-in-progress Maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) goods Finished goods

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How Collaborative Robots Are Revolutionizing the Manufacturing Industry

Article | December 10, 2021

A new form of robot is entering manufacturing plants all around the globe. Instead of being locked away in their own work cell, collaborative robots work side by side with their human counterparts. Together, they form the manufacturing crew of the future. Collaborative robots, or cobots, are more flexible, easy to use, and safer than industrial robots. Instead of ending up abandoned in a corner, they are proving to be serious expansions of production capacity leading to better ways of creating superior quality products. 1.1 A New Breed of Bot Cobots are a new type of automation product with their own ISO standards for safety and usability. For a robot to qualify as a cobot, it has to be used for tasks of a collaborative nature while sharing all or part of its reach space with human operators. So it is not the product alone that classifies it as a cobot. Industrial robots must be expertly programmed for one specific job along the production line. This requires hard line coding and endless tweaking and testing, which together with other factors make for a sizable upfront investment. Not so with collaborative robots. Cobots may look similar to traditional robots in some ways, but they are much easier to install and program. This foregoes the need to cooperate with a robotic integration service. Their lightweight and friendly form factor lets manufacturers conveniently relocate them on the shopfloor from one project to another. This renders the robotics technology perfect for a data-driven, Industry 4.0 work environment. Cobots can side with traditional machinery and additive manufacturing equipment, aided by artificial intelligence and cloud connectivity while embedded in a networked environment rich with smart sensors and mixed reality interfaces. 1.2 A Unique Blend of Benefits Because it is fairly straightforward to reprogram a cobot to various tasks, they are perfect for high-mix, low-volume work to meet the rising demand for ultra-customized products. They can also do multiple tasks in unison, such as alternatingly loading a machine and finishing parts from the previous cycle. Here are some other advantages in addition to flexibility: • Low investment. Cobots typically cost a fraction of the price of an industrial robot, but they offer much lower payload and reach. ROI is typically one to two years. • Safety. With rounded surfaces, force-limited joints, and advanced vision systems, cobots are exceptionally safe. This reduces the risk of injury due to impact, crushing, and pinching. Driverless transport systems are wheeled mobile robots that immediately halt when their lasers detect the presence of a nearby human being. • Accuracy. Cobots score well on accuracy with 0.1mm precision or well below that. While they do typically sacrifice speed, dual-mode cobots can be converted to fully-fledged tools of mass production that run at full speed in their own safeguarded space. • Easy to program. Many brands offer user-friendly programming interfaces from beginner to expert level. This reduces the need for continuous availability of expensive and scarce expertise while giving current employees an incentive to upskill. And because they can be deployed within hours, cobots can be leased for temporary projects. • Research. Small processing plants, agile start-ups, and schools can invest in cobots to experiment with ways to automate processes before committing to full automation. 1.3 Cobot Activity Repertoire Cobots are perfect candidates for taking over strenuous, dirty, difficult, or dull jobs previously handled by human workers. This relieves their human co-workers from risk of repetitive strain injury, muscle fatigue, and back problems. They can also increase job satisfaction and ultimately a better retirement. The cobot’s program of responsibilities includes: • Production tasks such as lathing, wire EDM, and sheet stamping. • Welding, brazing, and soldering. • Precision mounting of components and fasteners, and applying adhesive in various stages of general assembly. • Part post-finishing such as hole drilling, deburring, edge trimming, deflashing, sanding, and polishing. • Loading and unloading traditional equipment such as CNC and injection molding machines, and operating it using a control panel to drastically reduce cycle times. • Post-inspection such as damage detection, electronic circuit board testing, and checking for circularity or planarity tolerances. • Box-packing, wrapping, and palletizing. • Automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) assist with internal transport and inventory management. 1.4 No-Code Programming While an industrial robot requires the attention of a high-paid robotics engineer, anyone with basic programming savviness can install and maintain a collaborative unit. Brands are releasing more and more kits for quick installation and specific use cases. Instead of being all numbers and line-coding, current user interaction is exceptionally people-focused. At the lowest skill level, lead-through programming lets operators physically guide the cobot’s end-of-arm-tool (EOAT) through the desired motion path, after which it will flawlessly replicate the instructed behaviour. It is also possible to enter desired waypoints as coordinates. At the highest level, it is of course still possible to have full scripting control. An intermediate step is visual programming interfaces. These let users create blocks of functionality that they can string together into more advanced action sequences, while entering the appropriate parameters for each function such as gripping strength, screwing tightness, or pressing force. These UIs come in the form of in-browser or mobile apps. Based on a 3D-CAD model of the machine and its industrial environment, a digital twin of the cobot can simulate and optimize its operations, for example to prevent collisions. It also lets operators remotely monitor and adjust the machine while it’s running. All the while, back-end artificial intelligence can do its analyses to find further efficiency improvements. 3D models of the to-be-manufactured product can be imported for edge extraction of complex surfaces. These will then be converted into the cobot’s desired movement trajectories instead of tedious manual programming. This makes them feasible to implement for highly dexterous tasks like welding curved hydroformed metal parts or sanding and polishing the most intricate of 3D printed geometries. Interfacing directly with the robot is becoming increasingly human-centered as well. Future cobots will respond to voice interaction as well as touch input, eradicating the screens-and-buttons paradigm of current devices. Some brands are giving the cobot a face with emotional expressions, hoping to lower the barrier to adoption. The upcoming generation of cobots can even respond to body language, as well as show its intentions by projecting light to where they are about to reach or move next. 1.5 A Human World Ultimately, the objective of any company is to create value for people. It is not an option to completely remove humans from the shop floor in an attempt to stay at the forefront of innovation. Attempting to leap to full automation and the utopian “lights-out factory” does not work anyway, as automotive giants such as Ford, Chrysler, GM, and Tesla can testify. A significant portion of human employees will indeed need to give up their roles. On the other hand, improved productivity levels open up space to retain personnel and uplift them to more creative, managerial, analytical, social, or overall more enjoyable jobs. For certain tasks, humans still need to be kept inside the manufacturing loop. For example: • Complex assembly routines and handling of flexible components. • Large vehicle subassemblies contain many variable components and require more hand-eye coordination than one cobot can handle. Humans are needed to make sure everything lands in the right position while the cobot provides assistive muscle power. • Fashion, footwear, jewellery, art pieces, and other products where creation borders on artistry rather than mechanical assembly require the aesthetic eye of humans. People are also needed to spot aesthetic deficiencies in custom one-offs in order to correspond with customers before finishing the production batch. • While intelligent automation software can spot bottlenecks in efficiency, humans are required for creative problem solving and context-awareness to make decisions. A spirit of flexibility and innovation is just as important as the accuracy of perfect repetitions. 1.6 Mission: Install a Cobot Cobots have numerous advantages over industrial solutions or people-only workspaces. They enable faster, more precise, and more sophisticated operations while reducing downtime and maintaining employee satisfaction. Low-voltage operation and reduced material waste fits with sustainable innovation and corporate social responsibility programs. Many companies are reporting surges in production capacity and staff generally experience the presence of cobots as favorable. For example, industry leviathans like BMW and Mercedes-Benz are reaching the conclusion that in many parts of the production process implementing a cobot has been the right decision. Connecting all parts of the production line with full automation solutions is a pipedream. It works only when all steps are perfectly attuned, and in reality this never happens and one misstep can be catastrophic. Whether to hire a human, a robot, or a co-robot is a complex and ever-more pressing decision. Statistical process control is paramount for large organizations to make unbiased data-driven decisions. Determine the key performance indicators, then find the most critical bottlenecks and major opportunities for leaps in production efficiency, product quality, or staff unburdening. Talk to employees for their insights and probe their level of skill and enthusiasm needed for working with their new artificial assistants. Digital transformation should be an exciting shift in the organization and its people, so apply new technological advancements only where it makes sense. Despite common beliefs about robotization, the cobot is an entirely separate product category that can be a surprisingly plug-and-play solution for simple tasks, with programming apps becoming increasingly intuitive. A cobot’s flexibility makes it perfect to run early experiments to help companies find its best spot on the factory floor. Its unbelievable precision, consistency, and level of control generally can make a strong first impression on customers. Not only can cobots increase production capacity while reducing idle time and cycle time to accelerate manufacturing across many vertical markets, but they also enrich the work environment resulting in happier and more involved employees. For many companies, a cobot can be the next logical step in their digital transformation.

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Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM): Major Challenges and Their Solutions

Article | December 16, 2021

Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) is a technology that revolutionized the manufacturing business. Pierre Bézier, a Renault engineer, produced the world's first real 3D CAD/CAM application, UNISURF CAD. His game-changing program redefined the product design process and profoundly altered the design and manufacturing industries. So, what is CAM in its most basic definition? Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) is the application of computer systems to the planning, control, and administration of manufacturing operations. This is accomplished by using either direct or indirect links between the computer and the manufacturing processes. In a nutshell, CAM provides greater manufacturing efficiency, accuracy, and consistency. 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 In light of the numerous advantages and uses of computer-aided manufacturing, manufacturers have opted to use it extensively. The future of computer-aided manufacturing is brightening due to the rapid and rising adoption of CAM. According to Allied Market Research, the global computer-aided manufacturing market was worth $2,689 million in 2020 and is expected to reach $5,477 million by 2028, rising at an 8.4% compound annual growth rate between 2021 and 2028. Despite all this, each new development has benefits and challenges of its own. In this article, we'll discuss the benefits of CAM, the challenges that come with it, and how to deal with them. Let's start with the advantages of computer-aided manufacturing. Benefits of Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) There are significant benefits of using computer-aided manufacturing (CAM). CAM typically provides the following benefits: Increased component production speed Maximizes the utilization of a wide variety of manufacturing equipment Allows for the rapid and waste-free creation of prototypes Assists in optimizing NC programs for maximum productivity during machining Creates performance reports automatically As part of the manufacturing process, it integrates multiple systems and procedures. The advancement of CAD and CAM software provides visual representation and integration of modeling and testing applications. Greater precision and consistency, with similar components and products Less downtime due to computer-controlled devices High superiority in following intricate patterns like circuit board tracks Three Challenges in CAM and Their Solutions We have focused on the three primary challenges and their solutions that we have observed. Receiving Incomplete CAD Updates Receiving insufficient CAD updates is one of the challenges. If, for example, the part update from a CAD engineer does not include the pockets that are required in the assembly, to the CAM engineer. SOLUTION: A modeler that enables developers of a CAM programs to create intuitive processes for features such as feature extraction and duplication across CAD version updates. A modeler is capable of recognizing and extracting the pocket's architecture and the parameters that define it. Additionally, the CAM application can enable the engineer to reproduce the pocket in a few simple steps by exploiting the modeler's editing features such as scaling, filling, extruding, symmetrical patterning, and removing. Last Minute Design Updates The second major challenge is last-minute design changes may impact manufacturers as a result of simulation. SOLUTION: With 3D software components, you may create applications in which many simulation engineers can work together to make design modifications to the CAD at the same time, with the changes being automatically merged at the end. Challenging Human-driven CAM Manufacturing The third major challenge we have included is that CAM engineers must perform manual steps in human-driven CAM programming, which takes time and requires expert CAM software developers. Furthermore, when the structure of the target components grows more complicated, the associated costs and possibility of human failure rise. SOLUTION: Self-driving CAM is the best solution for this challenge. Machine-driven CAM programming, also known as self-driving CAM, provides an opportunity to improve this approach with a more automated solution. Preparing for CAM is simple with the self-driving CAM approach, and it can be done by untrained operators regardless of part complexity. The technology handles all of the necessary decisions for CAM programming operations automatically. In conclusion, self-driving CAM allows for efficient fabrication of bespoke parts, which can provide substantial value and potential for job shops and machine tool builders. Computer Aided Manufacturing Examples CAM is widely utilized in various sectors and has emerged as a dominant technology in the manufacturing and design industries. Here are two examples of sectors where CAM is employed efficiently and drives solutions to many challenges in the specific business. Textiles Virtual 3D prototype systems, such as Modaris 3D fit and Marvellous Designer, are already used by designers and manufacturers to visualize 2D blueprints into 3D virtual prototyping. Many other programs, such as Accumark V-stitcher and Optitex 3D runway, show the user a 3D simulation to show how a garment fits and how the cloth drapes to educate the customer better. Aerospace and Astronomy The James Webb Space Telescope's 18 hexagonal beryllium segments require the utmost level of precision, and CAM is providing it. Its primary mirror is 1.3 meters wide and 250 kilograms heavy, but machining and etching will reduce the weight by 92% to just 21 kilograms. FAQ What is the best software for CAM? Mastercam has been the most extensively utilized CAM software for 26 years in a row, according to CIMdata, an independent NC research business. How CAD-CAM helps manufacturers? Customers can send CAD files to manufacturers via CAD-CAM software. They can then build up the machining tool path and run simulations to calculate the machining cycle times. What is the difference between CAD and CAM? Computer-aided design (CAD) is the process of developing a design (drafting). CAM is the use of computers and software to guide machines to build something, usually a mass-produced part.

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Additive Manufacturing: A Ground-breaking Change to Empower Industry 4.0

Article | November 20, 2021

Advanced manufacturing enables the concept of industry 4.0 and represents a significant milestone in the manufacturing industry. Additive manufacturing is a critical component of the industry 4.0 concept, propelling the industry to new heights of innovation. In various fields that are not immediately related to industry 4.0 or manufacturing, additive manufacturing has alternatively been referred to as 3D printing. The numerous advantages of additive manufacturing, such as reduced cost and time, are boosting its popularity and use in manufacturing and other industries. “Digital technology is so empowering on so many fronts, but for it to be empowering, it must be for everyone.” – Michael Walton, Director, Industry Executive (Manufacturing) at Microsoft. The global market of additive manufacturing is anticipated to increase at a 14.42 percent compound annual growth rate from USD 9.52 billion in 2020 to USD 27.91 billion in 2025. According to this market research, the future of 3D printing or additive manufacturing is quite bright in the coming years, and we will see widespread application across industries. First, let us understand the idea of additive manufacturing and its benefits to various industries. Concept of Additive Manufacturing Additive manufacturing is building a real thing from a three-dimensional computer model, often by successively layering a material. This technique utilizes computer-aided design (CAD) software or 3D object scanners to command devices to deposit material in exact geometric shapes layer by layer. As the name implies, additive manufacturing involves the addition of material to produce an object. Additive Manufacturing Benefits Produces Fewer Scraps and Trash When we compare additive manufacturing to traditional manufacturing techniques such as milling or turning, additive manufacturing adds only the amount of material required to build a product. As a result, it generates less waste and conserves scarce resources. Reduces the Time and Cost of Prototyping Making a product prototype is now faster, easier, and cheaper. Other production processes, like milling, have high setup and material costs. Prototyping is less expensive and takes less time, so you can quickly produce, test, and modify. It also shows practically instant verification of progress done. It Encourages the Digitalization of Businesses Continuous and effective communication between devices, machines, and robots is required for additive manufacturing. However, this is only achievable with effective digitization of production processes. As a result, businesses invest more in digital and IoT, a prerequisite for Industry 4.0. It Simplifies the Assembling Process by Condensing it into a Single Component Additive manufacturing in Industry 4.0 also simplifies the production process, especially product assembly. A traditional component requires numerous manufacturing procedures. This increases material and labor expenses as well as production time. However, additive manufacturing allows you to print the group in one piece. The Top Three Industries That Make the Most Use of Additive Manufacturing Additive manufacturing is presently used in a variety of industries. However, specific sectors make the best use of it. Thus, we will examine the industries embracing additive manufacturing technology and emerging with new life easing solutions. Healthcare In the healthcare industry, dentistry is the critical application of additive manufacturing. Technology helps it create bridges, crowns, braces, and dentures, always in high demand. Additive manufacturing has also been used to create tissues and organs, surgical tools, patient-specific surgical models, and personalized prosthetics. For example, many medical equipment companies employ 3D printing to build patient-specific organ replicas that surgeons can practice before completing complex surgeries. Aerospace Additive manufacturing is utilized to fabricate metal brackets that serve as structural components within airplanes. Prototypes are increasingly being printed in three dimensions, allowing designers to fine-tune the shape and fit of finished parts. In addition, interior airplane components such as cockpit dashboards and door handles are manufactured using 3D printing services. Automotive 3D printing can manufacture molds and thermoforming tools, grips, jigs, and fixtures for the automotive industry. Automakers utilize additive printing to customize parts for specific vehicles or drivers (e.g., seats for racing cars). An appealing colored dashboard, efficient fuel systems, and complicated braking mechanisms are all possible with 3D printing in the automotive industry. Therefore, it is best suited for pre-production, manufacture, and modification of automotive parts. How Does NASA use additive manufacturing in its space projects? The space environment has always been unpredictable, and scientists must be adequately prepared before embarking on any space mission. They must consider the durability and weight of all the objects they propose to transport into space. To land any object on a planet that does not have a flat surface or similar weather conditions to earth, scientists must design each object with these considerations in mind. “You always want it to be as light as possible, but you also want it to be strong enough.” -Chris Chapman, NASA Test Engineer It is not conceivable to make items capable of dealing with all the changes on other planets and achieving these project objectives using conventional materials and production processes. However, scientists do require a technique that will enable them to manufacture lighter and stronger objects for their space missions. 3D printing has played a significant part in meeting this demand and has provided space projects to manufacture objects that would withstand any unexpected events during space missions. For example, NASA employed 3D-printed metal components in their Mars project. NASA's specialized engineers are utilizing additive manufacturing to create rocket engines and possible Moon and Mars outposts. NASA used the 11 3D printed metal components on its Mars mission as well. It employed 3D printed components for the first time in the Curiosity rover, which landed on Mars in 2012. It was a successful project, and NASA has since begun employing 3D printed parts in its space missions to make machines lighter while remaining robust and functional. Final Words Additive manufacturing technology is making a real difference in the manufacturing process, and it is becoming the trending technology in the manufacturing industry. The benefits of additive manufacturing make the manufacturing process more advanced, easy, and customer-oriented. Additive manufacturing is the major transformation in the manufacturing industry and will take it to new heights of precision. FAQ Why is additive manufacturing critical? Additive manufacturing reduces the time and cost of prototyping and reduces the scraps amount during the manufacturing process of any object. In addition, it simplifies multiple processes from various industries. Are additive manufacturing and 3D printing the same? Yes, additive manufacturing and 3D printing are the same processes with different names as per the choice of the different industries. For example, in some industries such as space missions, It is also referred to as Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM). Which is the most applied sector for additive manufacturing? Healthcare is the industry that utilizes additive manufacturing technology the most. It also helps medical practitioners practice surgery on any critical body part with its 3D printed model from human tissues. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is additive manufacturing critical?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Additive manufacturing reduces the time and cost of prototyping and reduces the scraps amount during the manufacturing process of any object. In addition, it simplifies multiple processes from various industries." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Are additive manufacturing and 3D printing the same?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Yes, additive manufacturing and 3D printing are the same processes with different names as per the choice of the different industries. For example, in some industries such as space missions, It is also referred to as Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM)." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Which is the most applied sector for additive manufacturing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Healthcare is the industry that utilizes additive manufacturing technology the most. It also helps medical practitioners practice surgery on any critical body part with its 3D printed model from human tissues." } }] }

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