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Manufacturing Technology And Training In Europe

Manufacturing Technology and Training in Europe

Manufacturing Technology and Training in Europe

Manufacturing is a global industry. Even at a time when companies are rethinking global supply chains, seeing the techniques of manufacturers and manufacturing technology from around the world can spark ideas for how to increase productivity, which is crucial to develop the capacity needed for reshoring. The NTMA recently organized a European Tech Tour, with stops at four OEMs in two countries. Along the way, attendees had the opportunity to experience the latest technology from these suppliers, and—because OEMs are also themselves manufacturers—learn from them. Digitalization Heidenhain demoed its TNC 7 control during a tour of its headquarters in Traunreut, Germany. The control has many features that facilitate digitalization, including setup support with graphical models that walk machinists through the setup process. Digital manufacturing was a recurring topic throughout the tour, beginning with the first stop at the Heidenhain facility in Traunreut, Germany. Although digitalization has the power to improve manufacturing in a number of ways, it also has its difficulties. As one Heidenhain employee put it, “The challenge of digitization is providing the right information to the right person at the right time.” Heidenhain’s TNC 7 control has a number of features that are designed to do just that: help funnel the right information to the right people at the right time. This includes customizable interfaces that ensure the user has access to the information they need without being distracted by unhelpful information. Programmers can also access a cutting data calculator with a material database and mechanical and thermal load adapters. Task-focused setup support walks users through setup with 3D models to ensure the process is fast and accurate. Additionally, the TNC7 has fully integrated process monitoring, detecting deviations from a reference machining run to monitor production. Featured Content Machining Questions? Ask the Expert At Big Kaiser (which is called Big Daishowa in North America) Digitalization was also on display at the Big Kaiser facility in Rümlang, Switzerland, where the company showed its EWA boring head. The tool can function in a closed-loop system, with the machine tool measuring a bore and sending adjustments to the tool automatically. in Rümlang, Switzerland, took this concept to the next level with its EWA boring head. The tool has closed-loop capabilities that remove the need for a person to make process adjustments. Precision boring can be a challenging operation, compounded by the fact that it often occurs at the end of production, meaning scrapping parts at this stage is costly. The EWA boring head can work semi-automatically, with the operator adjusting the boring head as needed via an app on a tablet or smartphone based on measurements taken either manually or via the machine’s probe. It can also work as a fully closed-loop system, where the machine tool measures the bore, uses code provided by Big Kaiser to calculate any necessary adjustments, automatically send those adjustments to the IPC, adjusts the tool and confirms the adjustment before machining continues. Closed-loop control of a cutting tool can result in shorter cycle times and higher productivity with fewer labor hours and reduced scrap rates. Operation Combination DMG MORI demonstrated several machines with multiple capabilities, including this DMC 80 FD duoBLOCK that performed dressing, grinding and rough turning. Another theme was increasing efficiency by combining operations. The first mention of this came at at DMG MORI ’s facility in Pfronten, Germany. The location serves as a hub for the company’s milling expertise, and all of the machines it produces here have five-axis capabilities. Five-axis machines themselves help increase productivity, but DMG MORI is expanding on this by combining milling with other operations, such as turning and grinding, to create a “universal machining center.” One demonstration showcased a DMC 80 FD duoBLOCK that performed dressing, grinding and rough turning of a large workpiece. According to the company, these universal machining centers are growing in popularity because they can help consolidate supply chains, improve part quality and reduce lead times. Combining operations, although on a smaller scale, was also a topic of Heule’s VEX-S cutting tool combines operations on a smaller scale. This tool combines drilling and chamfering with a solid carbide drill and the company’s SNAP system for chamfering holes. discussion at cutting tool manufacturer Heule ’s facility in Balgach, Switzerland the next day. Heule makes specialized cutting tools for operations such as deburring, chamfering and counterboring. One example is its VEX-S tool, which performs both drilling and chamfering by combining a solid carbide drill with its SNAP chamfering system. The solid carbide drill portion […]

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Daisie Hobson

Daisie Hobson is a Director at the Reshoring Institute and an engineer with many years of experience in manufacturing and project management.

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