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Manufacturing in the time of COVID -19

Author: Nishant Kashyap

After suffering from the downturn in the automotive industry when everyone was hopeful for a better year, something unexpected happened – the arrival of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). It has disturbed the global economy and India is no exception.

Chatter in Milling

Author: Sashi Menon

You are sitting in an auditorium listening to a beautiful song from a renowned singer. You are totally immersed in the song and suddenly, the song is shattered by a loud screeching noise from the PA system. You are rudely awakened from your delightful experience. I believe all of us have experienced this scenario.

Is it time to replace my CNC machine?

Author: Bryan Rosenberger

CNC Machines, like everything else in life, begin to wear down as they age. Whether your issues are performance or maintenance related, an aging piece of equipment can leave you wondering whether or not it is time to replace your CNC machine. On the surface, it may seem like a simple decision, but there are many facets that can have lasting impacts on your business’ profitability.

Manufacturing in the time of COVID -19

After suffering from the downturn in the automotive industry when everyone was hopeful for a better year, something unexpected happened – the arrival of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). It has disturbed the global economy and India is no exception.

Though there have been fewer cases in India, the situation in China has impacted and will continue to affect the global supply chain in the days to come. According to Crisil, approximately 18% of India’s total merchandise imports are from China. India had a trade deficit of $159 billion as of calendar 2019 and it remains a net importer from China (including Hong Kong) of $56 billion. The worst-hit are industries like electronics, auto components, and manufacturing.

To minimise the spread of COVID-19, governments around the world are advising citizens to avoid any kind of mass gathering. This has impacted trade shows/ exhibitions around the world. Several exhibitions are already canceled while some are postponed. In such a scenario, how do B2B companies (especially machine tools, mould makers, and 3D Printing suppliers) who are dependent on such trade exhibitions going to promote their products and solutions? How do they reach out to their potential customers?

To answer this let me share my conversation with the owners of two of the job shops. This is what I realized:

Job shop A: The job shop generates business worth Rs 20 crore (about $2.8 million). The owner was worried about the impact of COVID – 19 on his business. He solely depends on trade shows for marketing and meeting potential clients. Since most of the exhibitions around the world have been called off or on the verge of being postponed, he is not sure how to reach out to potential clients and promote his solutions and services. (This job shop is 23-year-old, though there is a website to its name but it doesn’t do justice to their capabilities.)

Job shop B: This job shop manufactures automotive components and mould, among others. The revenue generated is about Rs 15 crore ($2 million). Interestingly, the owner informed that since the last month he was witnessed a good number of inquiries from countries like the USA, Israel, and other European nations. According to him, they are looking for suppliers in India because China is on a standstill. Though he is worried about the coming days, he is also hopeful of getting export orders because of the situation in China. (The job shop is only 7-year-old and the owner has invested in a decent website showcasing the job shop’s capabilities attracting inquiries.)

The industry expects a lukewarm response to the trade shows, at least in the first half of this year (for the ones that are not canceled), why not put some of the money kept aside for these shows to create your company website or making the existing ones better?

Further, explain your services better and start your social media activities. In my opinion, it can be done by focusing on digital marketing activities, which is long due.

Most of the Indian SMEs in these industries usually skip digital marketing (Several players do not even have a website), which means no presence in the social scene. I feel it’s high time these players change their promotion strategy.

Picture this, businesses in different geographies need services and want to explore the options, how will they find them? Obviously, by browsing the internet. If you have a strong online presence and have taken SEO seriously, they might land at your website. Further, if you have good content, there are high chances you will get yourself an inquiry. If you don’t have an online presence or the website content is not self-explanatory of your services and capabilities, they will turn away. Remember the old phrase, “The first impression is the last impression,”

So, why not start with a company website, followed by:

Social media activities

Investing in SEO

Preparing knowledge-sharing contents

Attending webinars

Investing some time on platforms like Linkedin

Another thing worth investing time is, collaborating with the On-Demand-Manufacturing platform. The on-demand-manufacturing concept has created a buzz in the manufacturing industry. These platforms take orders from different businesses and take the help of their manufacturing partners to complete them. You can list your company in one of these platforms and explore more opportunities.

In India, we have job shops led by experienced technocrats who have all the technical capabilities to cater to the requirement of the large OEMs, but we fail to market this. In the current time of rapid globalization, it is time we talk about our capabilities and reach out to customers from across the globe.

Coming back to Novel Coronavirus, yes these are challenging times, but the crisis is temporary. Let’s use this opportunity to concentrate on building brand equity by engaging with consumers and providing them with quality service.

Let’s hope for better days and pray for everyone who is affected by COVID-19.

Author: Nishant Kashyap


Liberate Year-End Planning From Outdated Constraints and Rigid Expectations

Posted By:ToolClinic :: Admin Posted On:23-Jun-2020

Year-end strategic planning is not what it used to be. The annual exercise has become an outdated, obligatory homage to the bygone era of cyclical goal setting and arbitrary targets. Yet, manufacturers are stuck in this rut. As the calendar year wanes, plant managers and department leads become tethered to their desks, creating reports and forecasts by plucking numbers out of the air to plot on charts. Fortunately, there is a better way.

Defining the Issues
Static views.

A modern plant which leverages digital technologies also needs a modern process for creating a highly flexible strategic plan. The old-school approach to setting goals and allocating capital funds is highly restrictive. An annual set-and-done plan does not allow for the continuous evolution and proactive initiatives that modern practices demand. However, conditions change, competitive opportunities arise, and innovations disrupt the market landscape. Manufacturers need to be able to course-correct.

Accuracy and Reliability.

When multiple disparate systems are deployed across an organization, data can become distorted or skewed. CFOs are hesitant to trust the analysis and cost justifications provided, fearing one layer of incorrect data will create cascading inaccuracy.

Rapid Change.

Agility is essential for keeping pace with the astounding rate of change in manufacturing today. Staying open to breakthrough ideas and being willing to shift priorities are the hallmarks of companies defining Industry 4.0. Plant management is one of the areas in which innovation and digital concepts are most influential, generating meaningful bottom-line impact. This is where automation, robotics, the Internet of Things (IoT), machine learning, and predictive analytics can be transformative. Future innovations, currently unforeseen, may require mid-year action.

Collaboration.

Many digital concepts require investments that would fall under plant assets, making the job of the plant manager more strategic than ever. Adding sensors to equipment, automating processes, leveraging robotics, and deploying IoT concepts all require equipment upgrades and IT networks for communicating and monitoring the assets. The combination of smart machines and IT solutions may make budget allocation and stewardship more complicated. Teams will need to collaborate on ideas—plus share the heavy lifting during roll-outs.

Accountability Required.

A carefully thought-out plan is required for sizable investments to ensure that the Return on Investment (ROI) is achievable and that steps for supporting and measuring results are put in place. Alignment with corporate goals, the overall intention, and accountability must be documented prior to commitment to new investment.

Limited Resources.

The stakes are high as companies and the stakeholders are hungry for growth. However, resources are limited as economic optimism has had a slow reboot, fuelled by tax reform, but dampened by uncertainty from tariffs. Plus, existing staffs are stretched thin as the shortage of skilled workers is leaving several positions unfilled in plants. Because of all of this, risk tolerance is low. Manufacturers simply cannot afford any false starts or fruitless detours.

How Can Technology Help the Planning Process?

Fortunately for plant managers, modern Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) solutions, with predictive analytics and asset assessment capabilities, can help forecast future trends, provide data for informed decision-making, and leverage asset assessments to help plan smart capital investments. Most importantly, network connectivity and real-time visibility will help managers stay on top of minute-by-minute issues and assume a proactive approach to preventing downtime.

Holistic View.

With fully integrated systems in place, plant managers can be holistic in their strategies and budget recommendations. With easy access to the big-picture view, from Facility Condition Assessment (FCA) to Remaining Useful Life (RUL) and Estimated Replacement Cost of assets, managers can anticipate where critical investments may be required. Thanks to predictive analytics, costs of asset maintenance can also be projected with accuracy, along with necessary resources, such as parts and technicians.

Reliability.

Running the entire organization, from financials to asset management, with software from one vendor, will help eliminate the discrepancies that can come from disparate systems. This significantly improves data accuracy, giving top executives the confidence they need to make decisions.

Data-Based Decisions.

When strategizing, plant managers must be able to access data to analyze the cost of possible downtime and upgrade-vs-replace decisions. The goal is to determine what investment options will provide the highest level of reliability, and the least amount of disruption to operations. A modern EAM solution can be used to conduct asset assessments to help monitor asset condition, regulations and compliance issues, and the asset’s value to the organization. This means more than replacement costs and will require some up-front research and data input. Nevertheless, creating an asset assessment system will provide the insights needed for ongoing proactive decisions and timely attention to issues.

Predictive Analytics.

Today, innovative Business Intelligence (BI) solutions contain powerful predictive capabilities, using algorithms and data science to identify patterns in data points and project next likely outcomes. Users can explore “what if” scenarios and obtain forecasts of likely costs and likely demands.

Cash Flow.

When the EAM and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) or financial solutions are fully integrated, it is easier to analyze financial impact of maintaining the infrastructure and investments in assets. This glimpse of future demands can be juxtaposed against projected cash cycles considering forecasts for customer demand. Executive level decision-makers can prioritize spending and plan major investments to coincide with cash flow availability.

Priorities.

An asset assessment program allows managers to identify time-sensitive critical issues which are high priority and demand immediate response, including ones which may incur costly fines. Managers should be alert to such issues as: ADA accessibility, building code compliance, OSHA or EPA mandates, and workforce or public safety issues.

Ongoing Course Correction.

One of the most important considerations for annual planning is to phase out the annual component and build in frequent check points. Planning for monthly or quarterly reviews of asset conditions and changing market demands, will help the organization stay in-tune to fast changing trends and detect major influencers in a timely manner.

Final Take-Aways

Although managers in plants and factories have been following the annual year-end wrap up and new year planning for decades, the process is largely outdated. Organizations—and their facilities—need to be more responsive to the changes brought about by innovation and digitization. To truly take advantage of new technologies, like IoT and predictive analytics, companies need to build strategic systems that tune in and respond to data early and often. Continuous strategic planning is the new requirement for the digital enterprise. Fortunately, modern EAM solutions support this new demand—and new mindset.

About Author

Ranga Pothula is the Managing Director and General Manager for Infor’s India Business Unit. At Infor, his responsibility is scaling IBU operations by sharpening focus on global delivery, servicing offerings, technology developments, and strengthening customer and partner relations. Ranga has been at Infor for over two decades. Having been at the helm of both R&D and CoE services across multiple products, under his charge, he has been leading the growing global delivery services operations in India, the Philippines, Egypt and Poland over the past four years.


Chatter in Milling

You are sitting in an auditorium listening to a beautiful song from a renowned singer. You are totally immersed in the song and suddenly, the song is shattered by a loud screeching noise from the PA system. You are rudely awakened from your delightful experience. I believe all of us have experienced this scenario.

The high-pitched screech from the PA system is known as audio feedback. This happens due to the presence of a sound loop between the audio output and the audio input. The screech says that there is something undesirable about the arrangement which is not suitable for the setting.

And “chatter’ says the same thing when it happens during machining, something undesirable is there.

Chatter is a resonant vibration (also called as resonant chatter), which feeds on itself. Resonant vibration can be defined as a forced vibration in which the frequency of the disturbing force is very close to the natural frequency of the system and the amplitude of vibration becomes very large. The resulting response vibration is amplified and can be huge. Chatter can be quite violent and will create a distinctive loud noise. It is very bad for the tool life, spoils the accuracy and surface finish of the component. It is also bad for the machine spindle.

Chatter can also be described as regenerative vibration; it can feed on itself. Vibration at the cutting edge leads to a wave in the workpiece and constant vibration creates a series of waves. When the second pass is made over this surface, which is wavy, the forces on the cutting edge will vary according to the peaks and valleys of the waves. Chip thickness also varies. This will intensify the vibration which in turn makes more waves of the same frequency on the surface. And this repeats during every pass.

Chatter can be either related to the cutting edge or to the workpiece. In the first case, the tool and machine vibrate and is transmitted to the workpiece. Whereas in the second case generally, this happens while machining thin walls.

To control workpiece chattering, first and foremost is to use the sharpest cutting edge possible for the material to be machined. Uncoated cutting edges can help since the cutting edges will be very sharp, but not a very good proposition considering the cutting parameters. Tool overhang is also to be considered, use the shortest tool initially and longer tools step by step till the required depth is achieved (if possible). To increase the rigidity of the walls some easily removable filling material can be used to fill the cavity, but this is not always possible.

Apart from the above, the machining strategy is the most important. Using the alternative side machining method will help to control chatter to a great extent. Keep the maximum possible stock on the walls and machine the alternative sides. For example, the first DOC on the first side of the wall, the same DOC on the second side of the wall, the second DOC on the first side than on the second side and so on.

When dealing with chatter related to the cutting edge, the matter becomes more complicated than related to workpiece. Since chatter is a regenerative vibration, what can be the best way to attack? Answer is simple, prevent vibrations, which is not simple.

First, let us discuss why does the tool tends to vibrate. Imagine applying force on one of the prongs of a tuning fork. It will deflect. Once you release the pressure it springs back and vibrates at its resonance frequency. The same is the case with the tool. When the cutting-edge digs into the material cutting forces act against it and once it comes out of the cut, the forces are released, it springs back and vibrates at its resonance frequency. This is called as tool deflection. Tool deflection is a natural phenomenon, but when it exceeds the limit, vibrations occur which can lead to chatter.

While addressing chatter, reduction of the cutting forces is the prime objective. Most of the precautions areas the same as in workpiece chatter. Using the most positive cutting-edge geometry is the first step. This depends on the material to be cut. For example, if you are machining hardened steel you need a strong geometry, a positive geometry intended for aluminum will be disastrous. So, select a comparatively positive geometry recommended for hardened steels. Reducing the number of cutting edges will naturally help to reduce the cutting forces and always use a differential pitch cutter. Use the maximum diameter with the shortest overhang.

But, is it only the cutting edge responsible for chatter? The cutting edge is the part of the tool which is held in an adaptor. So, adaptors also play a major role in controlling chatter. Well balanced adaptors (G2.5 class) with a good runout (3 microns at L/D 3) will the best choice. Vibration dampened adaptors also help to eliminate vibrations and thereby chatter.

One more major aspect cannot be forgotten, the machine. Since chatter is a resonant vibration that is excited by the cutting edges, sometimes a certain RPM will influence the workpiece at a frequency that will maximize chatter. These spindle speeds should be identified and avoided. Some experienced operators know that at some certain spindle speeds, there can be chatter and they avoid those speeds. They know the “sweet spots” or the “Stable Milling Speeds” of their machine by sheer experience.

If we approach chatter phenomenon scientifically it is possible to identify stable milling speeds of the machine using the “Stability Lobe Diagram” by Tobias. The diagram is plotted by a series of intersected borderlines of stability. A rough representation of the diagram is given below.

The curved lines divide the diagram into three areas: unconditionally stable, conditionally stable, and unconditionally unstable. Area below the line is unconditionally stable, which is independent of the chatter frequency of the RPM. Whereas the area above the line is unconditionally unstable, chatter will occur in this area where the chatter frequency of the RPM will influence. In the conditionally stable area, points are stable when they are below the lobes, and unstable above the lobes.

If the stability lobe diagram cannot be provided by the machine manufacturer, there are two ways of doing it. Manually, by listening to chatter and plotting the points, which is a laborious process. As mentioned earlier an experienced operator will know these points and will avoid certain spindle speeds. Another way is by investing or getting the services for analytically determining the lobes. There are various providers and equipment capable of doing chatter analysis.

Chatter is a phenomenon that will give undesired results. But it is not unavoidable. Precautions mentioned in this article can be helpful to address this phenomenon.

About Author:

Sashi Menon, Director of Gratias Solutions, providing consultancy services in various aspects of manufacturing. With a career spanning over 35 years, he has experience in Metal Cutting, Promotion of New Metal Cutting Techniques, Product Launches, Conducting Seminars, Educating Customers & Internal Personnel, Sales Management, and Business Development. He has worked as General Manager (Product Management & Application Support) for Seco Tools India and Head (Technical) for Hoffmann India. A high performing executive with a proven track record of accomplishments and has led teams of highly professional technical experts.


Is it time to replace my CNC machine?

CNC Machines, like everything else in life, begin to wear down as they age. Whether your issues are performance or maintenance related, an aging piece of equipment can leave you wondering whether or not it is time to replace your CNC machine. On the surface, it may seem like a simple decision, but there are many facets that can have lasting impacts on your business’ profitability. While the simple dollars and cents will weigh heavily in your decision making process, it is also important to consider several key alternatives before pulling the trigger on a machine replacement.

Here are some signs that it’s time to replace your CNC machine.

A Dip in Production

One indicator that it may be time to replace your machine is that it takes longer to produce parts than it did in the past. A wide range of wear and tear could force you to break down for maintenance or adjust your speeds and feeds to yield acceptable parts (leaking fluid, timing circuits, busted belts, etc.) and these malfunctions can significantly hinder your rate of production. For machines that are running ‘round the clock’, it won’t take long to notice these delays eating into your shop’s bottom line.

Often times, these issues aren’t readily apparent.. Delays can occur by the second, (as opposed to hours of down time), but when these instances are combined, we begin to see a bigger picture. This is why it is important for diligent operators to track production times and delays, so they can begin to notice trends as soon as possible.

Replacement parts are harder to find

When it comes to machine maintenance, the million-dollar question is always “should I repair the machine or replace it?” A good signal that it’s time to replace your machine is that replacement parts are harder and harder to find. With skilled operators and a routine maintenance schedule, some CNC machines will outlive their maker. This is great when it comes to machine longevity, but not so much when the primary source of replacement part ceases to exist.

Secondary part providers are always an option, but as replacements stop being produced, it will become harder (and more expensive) to get your machine the components it needs to function at a high level. Taking time to search for new parts while your machine sits idle is another source of lost revenue. If you’re already struggling to find replacement parts, it may be time to replace your machine.

Poor Maintenance

There is generally a clear correlation between the life of a CNC machine, and the routine/preventative maintenance it receives. Has your machine been maintained regularly? Do you have detailed maintenance logs and perform routine audits? If you have a used machine and don’t know the entire maintenance history, consider the frequency that the machine needs repairs. Without a proper log, on-going maintenance issues can go unnoticed.

The Cost of Repairs

Time to do some math. Replacement parts get spendy. Service technicians even more so. Depending on the rate at which your machine needs repairs, when factoring in parts, labor, down time, etc. you can quickly get to a point where it no longer make sense to stick with a piece of aging equipment. Before long, you could be spending more than it costs to purchase a new machine, just to keep your used CNC limping along.

This, of course, depends on what sort of machines you’re looking to acquire. While technology is becoming more affordable, new CNCs can vary widely in price. Some will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars or more. It may not make sense in every scenario to purchase a brand new replacement, but there are “new used” or factory refurbished options that would be significant improvements on an old piece of machinery. This is why it is so important to understand the true costs of your used machines, and how those relate to other options on the market.

Safety First!

Finally, and perhaps one of the most important factors, is whether the machine is still safe to run. It’s easy to get caught up in doing the math and finding the most cost-effective solution to keep your business running, but the safety of your employees should always come first. If there’s a reason to believe the machine isn’t safe to operate, or could malfunction during production, it is time to replace your equipment.

As you can see, there are many factors in play. There is rarely a definitive moment when you’ll know it is time to part ways with an aging CNC machine, and the question or “repair or replace” will likely be ongoing. But taking into account the variables discussed in the article will help you better understand the true cost of operation, and will better prepare you when it comes time to make this decision for your business.

About Author

“Bryan Rosenberger, a lifelong Oregonian, helps run R&R Manufacturing, a family-owned machine shop that specializes in waterjet cutting and CNC machining. Outside of manufacturing, Bryan enjoys hiking in the Pacific Northwest and spending time with his wife and two young daughters.”

https://asimachinetool.com/replace-cnc-machine/

https://www.tramarindustries.com/3-Signs-You-Should-Replace-Your-CNC-Machine_AE17.aspx

http://www.thermwood.com/header/upgrades_retrofits_general_info.htm

https://blog.gesrepair.com/2018/08/14/repairs-versus-replacements-objective-look-industrial-machinery-costs/

https://blog.gesrepair.com/2018/08/14/repairs-versus-replacements-objective-look-industrial-machinery-costs/

http://www.cnc.com/how-much-do-cnc-machines-cost/


Measuring Tool For Making Profit

Manufacturing technologies are one of the backbone technologies for the today’s entire industry.

In manufacturing industries all over the world there is increased demand for tighter tolerances means controlling variation in manufacturing processes, more precision.

Designing critical parts and manufacturing them, there will be always gap. Parts are increasingly becoming complex and their functions are becoming more and more critical. Measuring Technology is connecting both design and manufacturing.

Modern manufacturing have challenging principles: Do it faster, cheaper and better. But how do we do it ..??

In view of this , Measuring Tool becomes extremely important aspect of manufacturing. Todays 3rd Generation SMART Tool Measuring & Presetter ( STP ) Machines does much more and beyond tool length and diameter checking. It is direct link between tool database and machine which produces complex, critical and precise parts.

Manufacturing needs Measure Tool– Why ??

To shorten machine idle time, accurate tool measurements, repeatable offline measurements.

Idle Time is most expensive in today’s manufacturing environment where profit margins are continuously reducing. It is impossible to eliminate idle time. However, it is certainly possible to reduce idle time by deploying high quality tool STP for quick, accurate and reliable, repetitive offline tool measurements. This makes possible to measure tools while machine is making parts – means making money. Offline STP offers better cost economics.

STP not only offers improvements in reducing idle / set-up time, but storage system for your tool components, tool assemblies and job assemblies, and bring consistency throughout manufacturing environment.

We are talking about digitization , Industry 4.0 , smart manufacturing. Through STP data can flow seamlessly across CNC manufacturing shops.

Manufacturing shops are spending time, money in integrating high precision, faster, accurate machines.

However, less importance and less time given for tooling, tool setting and how tool setting can significantly contribute in reducing idle times. Many times, expensive manufacturing machines, machine tools are used for tool measurement – length and diameter loosing production time. During this time, machines don’t make parts and don’t make money. So take it offline and make more money.

How to make more money?

Of course, by keeping the spindles rotating – by reducing spindle idle time? But when do Spindles stop? Sometimes out of material, sometimes tool is broken. But mostly importantly, when spindles are stopped during setup. To reduce setup time is to increase spindle time. What would happen to your setup time if you could take tool setting out of the machine and do it offline?

In STP you are not setting the tools but you are measuring the tools and then CNC machines are compensating the offsets.

Scenario in Indian Manufacturing:

It seems manufacturing in India have not embraced presetting to the extend european manufacturing have integrated presetting as tool management into manufacturing. Problem is resistance to change, and partly because the benefits of presetting are somewhat intangible. It takes much more to essentially understand how much time is spent manually setting tools and what impact it has on shop throughput, on cost and on profitability.

Manufacturers can take advantage of the time-saving, accuracy enhancing benefits of tool presetters to make their companies more competitive in today’s highly competitive cut throat competition in market.

The result – better parts, longer tool life, and less spindle downtime.

Advantage of Smart Tool Measuring & Presetter (STP):

Improved Quality Of Parts – Accuracy & Repeatability of Tool Measurement

Using Tools to the longer Tool Life

Reduction in setting time

Making more money – means increasing Productive Time.

Ease of use.

Tool Data Management – Data communication across manufacturing.

How STP will help to generate revenue at least 20% with some thumb rule technique in Manufacturing we will discuss in Part II …. So Stay tuned .

Author: B P Poddar, Sr. Vice President, Fatty Tuna India Pvt. Ltd. (FEMCO)


What Mechatronics Means For CNC Manufacturing

Mechatronics has been hailed as the innovation engine behind the fourth industrial revolution. That’s quite a forcible claim. So where did the term originate and why, what are its current applications and how is it leading the future of CNC manufacturing?

I read a lot of industry literature and pride myself on knowing the lingo, but with so much jargon out there it’s often more expedient to just skim over the buzzwords. Confronted with the word “Mechatronics”, OK I get the gist, but is it simply a generic catch-phrase, or is there more to the story?

Mechatronics is a bit like a manufacturing Magimix, blending a wide variety of engineering disciplines such as mechanical engineering, electronics, computer engineering, telecommunications engineering, systems engineering, control engineering and more. But thinking of all these disciplines as distinctly separate is a thing of the past.

The term mechatronics was coined in Japan in the 1960s, originating from the budding field of robotics. Early on, robot arms were uncoordinated and had no sensory feedback. Combining prevailing programming, sensor and control technologies resulted in the design of far more fluid and better coordinated robotic movements.

As mechatronic methods progressed, it began to be used in vending machine technology, auto-focus cameras and automatic doors. In the 1980s, microprocessors were introduced into mechanical systems and by the 1990s, computer intelligence was applied to mechatronic engineering.

In order to reap the rewards of mechatronics, the way in which machines were traditionally designed had to change. Mechanical engineers would design a machine or device, and only afterwards provide control and programming solutions; the work done separately by computer or software engineers. Only when they started applying a mechatronics approach to design, development, and fabrication, did engineers realize just how inefficient their old methods really were.

Mechatronics engineers can now improve upon speed, reliability and flexibility of myriad interrelated processes used in CNC manufacturing such as:

TOOL MONITORING:

Uninterrupted machining is like the holy grail to manufacturers, who are always striving to meet production targets and quality demands. Tool wear is a critical weak link. Automated, real-time tool monitoring systems check the condition of cutting tools throughout the machining process, predicting tool wear before it causes damage to the machine tool and work piece. Mechatronics-based tool-wear monitoring and alarm systems have become an integral part of automated tool rooms and unmanned factories.

FLEXIBLE MANUFACTURING SYSTEMS (FMS):

Due to market demands, manufacturers are moving away from mass production in favor of small-batch runs. FMS combines microelectronics and mechanical engineering to apply all the cost-effective elements of large scale production to batch work. A central online computer controls the machine tools, work stations, and the transfer of components and tooling. The computer also provides real-time monitoring and information control. This mechatronic system of flexibility and control, makes the production of a wide range of products in small batches not only possible but profitable.

COMPUTER INTEGRATED MANUFACTURING (CIM):

The goal is to create a total manufacturing enterprise by integrating computer technologies such as CAD/CAM and automation technologies such as robotics and materials handling, with management tools such as data communications and organizational systems. All the operations involved in the life cycle of a product can then be formed from individual islands of activity, into a uniformed continent; controlled and documented at a single source. This Mechatronic approach not only boosts productivity on the factory floor, but also allows manufacturers to stay better connected with their customers and markets.

INDUSTRIAL ROBOTS:

This field in particular demonstrates the successful synthesis of mechanical, electronic, and computer engineering. Industrial robots are defined as re-programmable machines which respond to sensory signals received from the system environment. Based on these signals, robots carry out programmed work or activities. They can take simple independent decisions and communicate or interact with other machines and the central computer; performing functions such as parts handling and processing along with various stages of product construction ̶ especially on assembly lines. Even the building of the robots themselves is essentially mechatronic; integrating the many sophisticated mechanical and software systems required in robotic design.

AUTOMATIC QUALITY CONTROL & INSPECTION:

An array of sensors, data acquisition systems, machine vision systems, metrology instruments and more, are being used to monitor and analyze part quality; both with and without operator assistance. Mechatronic quality control operations are carried out right from the start of product design, using simulation software and digital imaging to predict performance. The integration of sensor technologies, signal conditioning devices and data conversion devices have become a hallmark of quality control in mechatronic automated manufacturing.

IN THE NEAR FUTURE:

The future of technological innovation will definitely involve multi-disciplinary expertise. Mechatronics’ true value for manufacturing will be in its ability to create a seamless unification and standardization of all existing design and manufacturing processes, while incorporating the steady stream of new emergent technologies continually being added to the mix. A reliable connectivity hub of mechatronic engineering know-how will be the key to unlocking a new, more powerful era in CNC manufacturing.

Author: Marie Orian at Colibri Spindles Ltd


Required A "Different"​ Perspective !!

JUGAADS is a Hindi word that loosely translates as “the gutsy art of overcoming harsh constraints by improvising an effective solution using limited resources.” JUGAADS is an antidote to the complexity of India which is easy, faster and cheaper! India is a country where you will find from incredible monuments to a proper “JUGAADS” slum. Here you will find the most organized new city of Chandigarh to old city of Kolkata. But everything that you see in a well organised manner started somewhere or the other from a small India style “JUGAADS”.

Now here comes Western hacks! These hacks are nothing but “JUGAADS” in a “well organized manner.” Now here is the thing, Westerns make these hacks in a well-organized manner taking care of safety, duration of lasing of the hack and yes probably these hacks are may not be cost efficient but properly done with the proper use of tools. Here one has to use their brains efficiently so that the output that comes is perfect in all aspects of life and is durable otherwise what is the use of spending so much money on a thing that will not have longevity.

JUGAADS and Western life hacks are so similar yet so different from each. One believes in using the available resources and doing the work anyway and the only thing that matters here is the output. On the other hand, the other believes in doing the work in a well synchronized manner using the available resources as well as making the resources available if need. Here both the process and output is important. And obviously when you are only the resources available then the process does not involve any spending of money which, the point to be noted is the key to “JUGAADS” and the reason why the term JUGAADS has evolved. Western life hacks are more in organized manner with the expenditure of money if required so that the output comes meeting the expectations of the maker.

As far as safety is concerned, I personally think that Western life hacks are safer to use than the Indian JUGAADS. It is nothing about competition or anything but about the sheer truth of the scenario that the well-organized hacks are made by keeping in mind about all the possibilities and outcomes whereas the JUGAADS is an instantaneous done hack without proper planning or thinking of all the possibilities if the JUGAADS goes wrong.

Now let us come to longevity of JUGAADS and Western hacks. To be fair enough the thing that is we all know from our personal experiences is that well planned works are always durable and last longer. And I guess the first sentence itself clears what I want to say. Yes, Western life hacks lasts longer than the Indian JUGAADS. The reason why “JUGAADS” is known as “JUGAADS” itself clears why it does not lasts longer. In other ways JUGAADS can be defined as quick, flimsy and on the spot innovation just like a first aid given to a person as the medical help given to anyone in need before the ambulance arrives. Western hacks are innovations with a road map covering all the pros and cons of the situation now and the situation after the hack comes in work.

But here comes one thing! Every innovation was made because there was some accident or incident. Turn the pages of history whether be it the discovery of gravity or the discovery of penicillin, all were found accidently. I guess JUGAADS is the first step towards great innovations. It is just that we need to put a little hard work and use of brains to clear its disqualification which stops it from being an ideal innovation.

Just like every coin has two face with its pros and cons the same Western hacks and Indian JUGAADS have their own pros and cons. It all depends on the ease of situation. If you have a situation where you do not have the time to think about the process and doing things in an organized manners then Indian JUGAADS are waiting at your doorsteps to explore all the possibilities of quick and immediate solution to the problem. And if you have all the time in the world to sit, process, think and come with a solution which would be perfect then you should obviously without a second thought opt for Western life hacks. And to the conclusion I would love to say that if an idea costs you less than one should obviously work on improving and making it ideal because Indian JUGAADS is the first step of innovation towards a big achievement.

And its time for Indian to come forward with Juggad Innovation and longevity in mind that help the world, where Indian become a better place for Manufacturing.