ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION

Plus One Robotics and Tompkins Robotics Announce Strategic Partnership for High-Volume Warehouse Sorting and Picking

Plus One Robotics | March 29, 2022

Plus One Robotics, a leading 3D and AI-powered vision software provider, announced a partnership with Tompkins Robotics, a global leader in robotic distribution and fulfillment automation. The two businesses collaborate to develop an automated picking solution that combines Plus One Robotics' 3D and artificial intelligence software with Tompkins Robotics' tSort technology.

Plus One's software and Tompkins AMRs will work together to provide efficient solutions for high-volume e-commerce fulfillment and distribution centers. The combined technologies provide more flexible sorting and classification of new package forms and varieties, resulting in increased throughput rates with less downtime.

“We are thrilled to be combining Plus One’s 3D and AI software with Tompkins cutting-edge robots,” said Brent Barcey, VP of Business Development for Plus One Robotics. “Supply chains and warehouses are stretched now more than ever with higher demands for faster material processing and the constant challenge of workforce shortages. This partnership will allow us to deploy scalable solutions for customers looking for significant reductions in operating times and costs.

“Joining tSort with Plus One’s induction robots is marrying two innovative and cutting-edge robotics solutions that offer end customers expedited and accurate parcel and unit sortation, The combined system will provide for greater flexibility not only in warehouses, but in distribution centers as well as restocking in stores.”

Mike Futch, President and CEO of Tompkins Robotics
Plus One presented at MODEX today, discussing the future of industrial automation and evaluating how technology enables unprecedented digitization of the supply chain. Attendees of MODEX are urged to stop by the Plus One booth #B3627 to learn more about the relationship and witness live demonstrations of the two companies' integrated systems operation.

Spotlight

Metal powder additive manufacturing continued its disruptive journey in 2017, largely overcoming some major challenges and seeing faster than anticipated movement into true serial production applications which spurred another year of healthy growth despite temporary slowdowns experienced at the end of 2016.

Spotlight

Metal powder additive manufacturing continued its disruptive journey in 2017, largely overcoming some major challenges and seeing faster than anticipated movement into true serial production applications which spurred another year of healthy growth despite temporary slowdowns experienced at the end of 2016.

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3D PRINTING

CORE Industrial Partners Acquires RE3DTECH to Form a New 3D Printing Platform

CORE Industrial | January 12, 2022

On January 11, CORE Industrial Partners LLC, a Chicago-based private equity firm, announced the acquisition of RE3DTECH, a leading provider of additive manufacturing services focusing on high-volume production components. RE3DTECH manufactures a broad range of products in-house, including 3D printing, finishing, quality control, and assembly. The company specializes in 3D printing production-grade items using multi-jet fusion and direct metal laser sintering technologies. The organization was founded in 2017 and is headquartered just outside of Chicago, Illinois. It services several end sectors, including aerospace and defense, consumer, technology, industrial, automotive, and medical. “Our investment in RE3DTECH represents an expansion of our thesis within the additive manufacturing sector to address the growing market for high-volume production needs. We believe CORE’s sector expertise and resources will prove highly impactful in accelerating the company’s growth, both organically and through complementary acquisitions. -John May, the Managing Partner of CORE Jim Teuber, President of RE3DTECH, said, RE3DTECH was founded with the mission to provide our customers with customized solutions utilizing the latest, state-of-the-art technologies. Our partnership with CORE will help unlock the resources necessary to continue investing in cutting-edge capabilities and further enhance our customer value proposition. “RE3DTECH’s strong growth since inception is the direct result of the company’s combination of talented employees, breadth of additive manufacturing technologies, design and engineering capabilities, and quick turnaround times to provide a differentiated experience to its customers. We look forward to building upon the company’s solid foundation to further expand its service offering and geographic reach.” -Matthew Puglisi, Partner of CORE

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MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY

Introduction of Cobots in Classrooms Accelerates with New State and Industry Endorsements of Universal Robots

Universal Robots | November 09, 2021

When schools educate students in mastering new technology, they look to validate that the hardware and software they use in the curriculum is relevant to companies employing graduates. Educational institutions also need to ensure that funding for acquiring the classroom technology is obtainable. Two recent endorsements of Universal Robots’ (UR) products and educational curriculum awarded by ARM and the Ohio Department of Education offer schools that insight, emphasizing the importance of UR’s collaborative robots (or ‘cobots’) in today’s manufacturing processes and in classrooms; UR is the first robotics manufacturer to be selected for ARM’s new Endorsement Program as ARM reviewed UR’s Educational Robotics Training program. At the state level, Ohio becomes the first U.S. state to evaluate and add UR courses to its Industry-Recognized Credential List (where it sits at 6 credit points for the 2021-2022 school year and onwards). “These endorsements mean the world to schools hoping to introduce hands-on cobot courses in their classrooms,” says Channel Development Manager at Universal Robots, Corey Adams. “The educational legitimacy of UR cobots opens the door to applying for both expanded federal funding and in Ohio also state funding to acquire cobots. And it gives schools confidence that they are not only offering students a diploma but also an instant career path.” Backing from major industries In order to make the Ohio Department of Education’s credentialed list, numerous companies in the state, including major Tier 1 automotive makers and home appliance manufacturers, vouched for the UR cobots, detailing how they use them on the shop floor and need an ever-expanding, educated workforce to deploy, program and operate them. “Ohio is industry leading in recognizing manufacturing technology and we expect this to quickly cascade out to other states as well,” says Adams who is actively working with numerous states in obtaining educational credentials. The Department of Defense-sponsored ARM Institute is a 300+ member organization that catalyzes robotic technologies and education solutions to strengthen the U.S. industrial base and secure U.S. manufacturing resiliency. ARM launched the Endorsement Program earlier this year in conjunction with RoboticsCareer.org, the ARM Institute’s national workforce capability that connects education seekers with training for manufacturing careers. ARM conducted rigorous audit Brian Wilson chairs the Education and Workforce Advisory Committee at ARM and audited the UR Robotics Training Program: “It’s a very rigorous audit that made it apparent that UR listened and adapted to industry needs,” he says. “There is a big push for cobots that are affordable, that can easily be redeployed in different applications, and that are for both the large enterprise but also for the entrepreneur. Our endorsement is not just an academic accreditation; we look at whether the program helps the industry educate the workforce they need right now.” In the evaluation of the UR program, ARM stressed the ‘training of the trainer’ aspect that ensures the quality of the teaching. “It’s also a course that can be offered from high school to industry professionals,” says Wilson. “There are many on and off-ramps in the lifelong learning journey and UR figured out how to make people embark on that journey at different career stages.” Ripple effect through supply chains At the Columbus State Community College in Ohio, the director of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), Jeff Spain, explains how the college is now building a mixed lab space for cobots, that will focus on both professional development for manufacturing employees while also educating the next workforce generation to hit the ground running with cobots. “With their reduced footprint and intuitive programming, cobots have been a major disruption to industrial automation and are within that Industry 4.0 sweet spot of technology solutions that we find that our local employers need funded education programs for,” he says. “When large companies endorse UR cobots, it has a ripple effect through the supply-chains as Tier 1-3 suppliers and other industries realize that here is a vetted, nimble technology, that we have found offers low risk.” For educators, manufacturers and students seeking to learn more about UR’s educational program, the company is offering the free webinar “Developing Tomorrow’s Engineers Today: An Educational Program Focused on Automation Competencies” on November 2, co-hosted with The Robot Report, and on November 10 with the Association for Advancing Automation (A3). About Universal Robots Educational Robotics Training Program The curriculum was created to provide a student-focused, hands-on instruction with a blended (in-class and hands-on) delivery that includes student-based projects, expanded training on interconnectivity and a clearly defined pathway for students to pursue an Advanced Manufacturing / Robotics Industry 4.0 career. The program integrates Employability skills, Project Management, Problem Solving, and Critical Thinking skills with the UR Robotics I4.0 Environment. The program aligns with ARM Model, RIA Compliancy, and National Credentialing. About Universal Robots Universal Robots aims to empower change in the way work is done using its leading-edge robotics platform. Since introducing the world’s first commercially viable collaborative robot (cobot) in 2008, UR has developed a product portfolio including the UR3e, UR5e, UR10e, and UR16e, reflecting a range of reaches and payloads. Each model is supported by a wide range of end-effectors, software, accessories and application kits in the UR+ ecosystem. This allows the cobots to be used across a wide range of industries and means that they can be flexibly redeployed across diverse tasks. The company, which is part of Teradyne Inc., is headquartered in Odense, Denmark and has offices in the USA, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the Czech Republic, Romania, Russia, Turkey, China, India, Japan, South Korea and Mexico. Universal Robots has installed over 50,000 cobots worldwide.

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DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION

Aizon Introduces a Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Predictive Maintenance Solution

Aizon | January 25, 2022

On January 24, Aizon announced the introduction of its new asset tracking tool for the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. Aizon Asset Health is built on Aizon's GxP-compliant AI SaaS Platform. It performs intelligent historical maintenance analysis, continuously monitors the condition of critical assets in real-time, identifies potential problems, and provides actionable maintenance recommendations to keep equipment operating at peak performance. This data-driven approach to maintenance lowers maintenance costs, minimizes unexpected downtime, and maximizes product output, thus maximizing the potential of Smart Pharma Manufacturing. Maintaining manufacturing equipment in good operating order may be costly and inefficient. A schedule-based approach to maintenance frequently results in the wasteful repair or replacement of equipment that is still operating in acceptable conditions or the catastrophic failure of equipment owing to undiscovered faults. This might result in production interruptions, product rejection, and a longer time to market, and product compromise. That is, guaranteeing that any operation is executed correctly the first time and every time. Combining sophisticated analytics and multivariate analysis with artificial intelligence, the Aizon Asset Health program improves unexpected downtime reduction beyond today's industry standard, eventually lowering maintenance costs while increasing asset dependability and performance. "Pharmaceutical manufacturers and biotech companies are under tremendous pressure to maximize their return on investment and to reduce unplanned downtime. However, the traditional schedule-based maintenance approach tends to fall short in terms of gaining control of downtime and the high costs associated with replacing equipment in an effort to achieve better performance, Our Asset Health application enables our customers to harness the power of their equipment and environmental data to slash maintenance costs, optimize equipment performance, enhance product output, and improve product quality." -John Vitalie, CEO, Aizon Monitoring Intelligent, Real-Time Assets Across Equipment and Facilities The Aizon Asset Health application enables pharmaceutical and biotech organizations to employ predictive analytics to monitor their assets' health and receive advanced warnings on their problems based on the solution's prescriptive and conditional data-driven insights. These actionable insights enable operators and maintenance teams to respond and intervene in real-time, ensuring the continued operation of manufacturing lines. In addition, asset Health is a cloud-native application that can be expanded across various sites and regions and maintains a history and condition of every piece of equipment. This enables pharmaceutical and biotechnology organizations to assure total asset integrity, maintain ideal facility conditions (such as temperature, humidity, and vibration), forecast the projected life of equipment, and track the energy utilized by an asset and its CO2 emissions. Furthermore, this vital information is aggregated on a single dashboard tailored to meet every firm's particular asset care requirements. "Demands for pharmaceutical manufacturing have never been higher. The Aizon Asset Health application helps manufacturers prevent unplanned downtime and maximize product quality and yield Aizon Asset Health taps into real-time sensor data, consolidates it, and leverages AI to generate alarms and/or actionable insights to optimize asset performance. It’s a game changer for the industry. " -Andy Alasso, SVP Product, Aizon.

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