Production Machining

NOV 2018

Production Machining - Your access to the precision machining industrial buyer.

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3 Major Manufacturing Changes Loom Ne technological capabilities ill enable manufacturers to customize everything, hile turning consumers into inventors. By Todd Palmer CONTRIBUTOR Todd Palmer is the president of Diversied Industrial Stang, a national skilled labor recruiting rm, based in Troy, Michigan.• Contact :: R ecently, I was fortunate to see a speech from Futurist Peter Diamandis. He spoke about what the future world of work will be like and specically talked about the workforce within manufacturing. According to him, manufacturing is about to be transformed. Old constraints such as specialization in manufacturing skill set and tooling are going away, new technologies are being added rapidly, and the type of employee needed in manufac- turing is going to drastically change, Mr. Diamandis says. New technological capabilities will enable manufacturers to customize everything, while turning consumers into inventors. And, as price points decline—while accessibility increases—manufacturing juggernauts and early-stage startups have innite possibilities ahead. 3D printing farms, smart factories and autono- mous co-bots will turn concepts into commodities overnight. In this column, I will examine the three major paradigm shifts that Mr. Diamandis predicts. Mass Customization. Fixed costs will begin to reach variable costs in the produc- tion sphere, allowing companies to no longer fabricate millions of the same product or part. Customer data-driven design will allow for cost e„ective, tailor-made commodities and one-o„ production items. Technological convergence will soon allow startups and corporations to personalize products at unparalleled scale. Articial Intelligence will go from merely automating production to conguring custom products. Previously a niche and prohibitively priced tool, 3D printing is hitting its exponential growth phase, Mr. Diamandis says. By 2021, IDC analysts expect 3D printing global spending to be almost $20 billion. Smart products and electronics no longer have to be manually embedded with circuitry. Using an array of conductive inks, manufacturers can print circuitry directly into their products, all at one time with conductive inks. With high thermal stability and at only a few microns thick, evolving conductive inks have the potential to revolutionize hardware production. Democratized Invention. Incubator studios and fabrication equipment labs are jumping onto the scene. Flaunting AI-aided robots and swarm 3D printers that work overnight, these urban workshops basically serve as new testing grounds—the physical hands for digital designs. With democratized platforms, everyone can be an inventor via newly accessible CAD-like design software and easy-to-use interfaces. New hardware studios and accelerators are springing up daily, eager to collaborate with digital startups and designers, by providing the physical building space and manufacturing capacity for now unincumbered entrepre- neurs. 'is allows any manufacturer, wanting to build any product, to become completely dematerialized. Smart, Autonomous Factories. For established corpo- rations with high production quotas, Industrial IoT, AI, collaborative bots and new technologies such as Li-Fi are the next frontier. With new sensors, ML tools and inspection drones coming to the market, not only can manufacturing equip- ment correct for errors instantaneously, but production will conform to changing demands in real time. Smart factories will manufacture smart products through machine-to-machine communication with data transfer between smart bots, with the goal of adapting to work "ows in real time. Yet as cloud-connected, collaborative machines begin managing themselves, what's to stop fully automated factories operating in the dark or without heat? Potentially nothing. Smart sensors now convert data, communicate with fabrication machines, and turn o„ devices when perfor- mance or safety are at stake. IIoT allows us to analyze production quotas, do predictive maintenance and input designs remotely. We've seen a skyrocketing software industry, bringing millions of jobs and services to our economy. As physical constraints to fabrication disappear and design platforms abound, we are on the verge of a second boom. BOUT YOUR BUSINESS 22 PRODUCTION MCHINING :: NOVEMBER 2018

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