ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION
Aerobotix | March 10, 2022
Minteq International Authorizes Aerobotix With FIREX™ Distribution for DOD Programs
HUNTSVILLE, Ala., March 7, 2022 – At a time when the Pentagon is urging America’s largest defense manufacturers to accelerate hypersonic weapon production, a small, privately held business in the defense and space industry center of Huntsville, Alabama, is quietly taking big steps to support the call for help. Aerobotix, an AS9100 certified FANUC robotics integrator and metrology company, today officially announced an agreement with Minteq International, Inc. to distribute Minteq’s industry altering FIREX™ RX-2390 Thermal Protection System (TPS) coating for hypersonic flight hardware. Aerobotix will work directly with Minteq’s Pennsylvania-based Pyrogenics Group, the global technological leader in high-temperature coatings for military and aerospace applications.
Minteq engaged Aerobotix because of the company’s expertise in robotically spraying parts and test panels within extremely tight tolerances for uniformity and thickness of coverage. Aerobotix also has significant prior experience with major primes using the FIREX™ product.
“Our desire was to assist our customers and the U.S. Government in fielding hypersonic missiles and aircraft as quickly as possible,” said Kent Pfeifer, Aerobotix’s process development manager. “By making the commitment to keep fresh FIREX™ RX-2390 on our shelves, we can immediately assist the major programs by robotically spraying accurate panels and even prototype parts for flight tests. We’ve been robotically spraying, scanning and sanding shrouds and rockets already, and now – with coating on our shelves – we cut critical weeks in delivery time.”
Aerobotix, and the scientists at Minteq, worked together to develop a FIREX™ RX-2390 recipe and a unique robotic paint dispensing system that is optimized for automation and heavy production. The FIREX™ formulations combine modified epoxy binders with thermally active materials that form cooling gases when exposed to temperatures in excess of 350°F.
Application of TPS coatings requires precision thicknesses control, even distribution of solids, and strong layer-bonding for optimal performance. Minteq notes that Aerobotix’s customized robotic application process provides all this, plus the ability to automatically spray-taper the paint thickness in various areas of the part, which can reduce weight, manufacturing time and cost.
"Aerobotix is spraying our product so much better than could ever be done by hand,” said Mark Breloff, Minteq technical sales manager. “The robot is mixing the coating perfectly, just in time, and applying it so accurately – we are seeing improved performance across the board.”
“Aerobotix can scan the part to get the as-built shape, spray to near-net and then use the robot to sand down to the optimal shape and thickness,” Breloff added. “Lab results are off the charts with this approach, which, most importantly, allows Minteq to show our customers what RX-2390 is really capable of.”
The new agreement with Minteq is a significant enhancement to Aerobotix’s new Fully Automated Hypersonic Coating Production System. Designated a “Center of Excellence,” the system includes “never been done before” adaptations of high MRL technologies. The facility provides a broad selection of services for preparing and painting hypersonic structures, including automated structured light scanning/projection, automated masking tape application, automated FIREX ™ spraying, automated non-contact Terahertz measurement, automated force controlled sanding and adaptive robotic machining of coatings.
Headquartered in Huntsville, Alabama, Aerobotix is an innovative leader in advanced metrology and robotic solutions for the aerospace and defense industries. The company specializes in the creation of cutting-edge automated robotic and measuring solutions for high-value, high-precision components, aircraft, and vehicles. Aerobotix has more than 130 robotic systems installed in the U.S. and abroad, providing exceptional results and savings for our clients.
FutureStitch | October 28, 2020
FutureStitch, Inc. an Orange County-based material and innovation organization, declared its revolutionary manufacturing facility recently received the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum accreditation – the USGBC's most elevated LEED assignment and the most noteworthy score among sock and knitwear manufacturers on the planet.
As an innovator in roundabout sewing innovation and material advancement, FutureStitch is a manufacturing and permitting accomplice focused on individuals and networks that help make their elite items, and now they have gotten the most elevated accreditation for making a solid, safe and naturally neighborly workplace.
"Since our founding, FutureStitch has had an equal focus on producing high-quality products and raising global manufacturing standards," said FutureStitch Co-Founder and CEO, Taylor Shupe. "Addressing society's most pressing issues – such as combatting climate change and providing meaningful employment with living wages – should be a primary goal for all manufacturing companies. Our Platinum LEED certification demonstrates that it is possible for any manufacturer to move beyond aspiration and take action to create a workplace that both engages employees and reduces its impact on the environment. We have set a new global standard for textile manufacturing, and we will continue to pioneer innovative, socially and environmentally responsible approaches as we look to build our first U.S.-based factory."
FutureStitch is the first U.S.-based manufacturer in China to receive the LEED Platinum certification, which recognizes FutureStitch's achievement in operating a healthier, more energy and resource-efficient building. The facility's low environmental impact features include:
Low Impact Construction: The factory was built using a fraction of the concrete typically used to build manufacturing facilities, and, instead, is constructed with recycled, ultra-durable metals like aluminum alloys and steel.
Low Power Usage: 500,000 kilowatts (kWh) of power is saved annually through the use of efficient lighting, on-site solar heating, and maximized access to natural lighting, reducing annual carbon dioxide emissions by 498.5 tons.
Geothermal HVAC: A geothermal air conditioning system pumps cooled groundwater through the building, reducing energy costs and eliminating the need to use any ozone-depleting substances.
Air Quality: Fresh air is circulated throughout the factory, including the production workshops, to reduce carbon dioxide and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions and maintain high air quality.
Low Water Usage: State-of-the-art chemical injection systems alleviate need for waste water. Products are finished using a dry-cleaning method instead of wet processes.
Green Transportation: More than 90% of employees commute through green travel.
FutureStitch's 300,000-square-foot office in China's Zhejiang Province opened in October 2018. Through a mix of elite specialists, progressed programming and industry-driving apparatus, the activity conveys speed-to-showcase and serious evaluating for its clients. Planned by incredibly famous designer Zhang Lei, FutureStitch's best in class office is SA8000 consistent – the world's driving social exhibition accreditation program zeroed in on specialist prosperity – and incorporates a library, ball court, rec center, and 4,000-square-foot craftsmanship display, mirroring FutureStitch's promise to giving its representatives a spot to live, learn, play, work out, and unwind.
Landing AI | October 22, 2020
As organizations manufacture goods, human inspectors survey them for abandons. Think about a scratch on cell phone glass or a shortcoming in crude steel that could have an effect downstream when it gets transformed into something different. Landing AI, the organization began by previous Google and Baidu AI master Andrew Ng, needs to utilize AI innovation to recognize these imperfections, and today the organization dispatched another visual investigation stage called LandingLens.
“We’re announcing LandingLens, which is an end-to-end visual inspection platform to help manufacturers build and deploy visual inspection systems [using AI],” Ng told TechCrunch.
He says the company’s goal is to bring AI to manufacturing companies, but he couldn’t simply repackage what he had learned at Google and Baidu, partly because it involved a different set of consumer use cases, and partly because there is just much less data to work with in a manufacturing setting.
Adding to the level of trouble here, each setting is novel, and there is no standard playbook you can fundamentally apply over every vertical. This implied Landing AI needed to concoct an overall toolbox that each organization could use for the extraordinary necessities of their manufacturing process.
Ng says to place this trend-setting innovation under the control of these clients and apply AI to visual investigation, his organization has made a visual interface where organizations can work through a characterized cycle to train models to see every client's assessment needs.
The manner in which it works is you take pictures of what a decent completed item resembles, and what a damaged item could resemble. It's not as simple as it would sound, since human specialists can differ over what comprises a deformity.
The producer makes what's known as an imperfection book, where the examiner specialists cooperate to figure out what that deformity resembles through an image, and resolve contradictions when they occur. This is done through the LandingLens interface.
Whenever investigators have settled upon a lot of marks, they can start emphasizing on a model in the Model Iteration Module, where the organization can train and run models to get to a condition of settled upon progress where the AI is getting the imperfections consistently. As clients run these tests, the product creates a report on the condition of the model, and clients can refine the models varying dependent on the data in the report.
Ng says that his company is trying to bring in sophisticated software to help solve a big problem for manufacturing customers. “The bottleneck [for them] is building the deep learning algorithm, really the machine learning software. They can take the picture and render judgment as to whether this part is okay, or whether it is defective, and that’s what our platform helps with,” he said.
He thinks this technology could ultimately help recast how goods are manufactured in the future. “I think deep learning is poised to transform how inspection is done, which is really the key step. Inspection is really the last line of defense against quality defects in manufacturing. So I’m excited to release this platform to help manufacturers do inspections more accurately,” he said.