What You Need to Know About Conflict Minerals
Guest Blogs 7/28/2015 4 comments Practically all electronic devices today contain metals that may
be coming from conflict-ravaged African countries. And political pressures will increasingly influence how these minerals are sourced and used in products.
A Tool for Simplified Runner System Analysis and Quicker, Reliable Mold Simulation
Guest Blogs 7/16/2015 Post a comment Design for manufacturing (DFM) in mold production means that mold designers evaluate the manufacturability of their molds in the early stage of mold development by collecting all relevant information and applying it to their designs. They also have to consider many other factors, including flow balance, structural stress, and assembly tolerance, in order to ensure successful molding production.
Processing Power, Programming Ease Keep DSPs Rolling Along
Guest Blogs 7/14/2015 Post a comment Digital signal processors have become a mainstay in the electronics industry. Their strengths of low power, powerful processing, and small size play to the needs of not just today’s systems but also those new and exciting applications that are just now coming into view.
The Engineer Shortage Is a Problem We All Can Solve
Guest Blogs 7/13/2015 16 comments There are serious challenges engineering and technical workforce managers face over the next 15 years. We have to view it as a supply chain problem with talent. Taking action now could well mean not being left by the side of the business road.
Motion Control in Packaging: 11 Tips for Improvement
Guest Blogs 7/10/2015 Post a comment Automation combined with trained personnel will provide faster, more efficient and cost-effective production. With automation products and software becoming so much more reliable and affordable, the days of the purely mechanical system are numbered, if not already spent.
A Look at the Impact of IoT on Motion Control and Fluid Power
Guest Blogs 7/10/2015 1 comment As the Internet of Things makes more industrial automation data available, translating that data into information and knowledge can yield new insights into end users’ operations. In hydraulic equipment, “smart” pumps, motors and valves are able to send diagnostic data directly to end-users, OEMs, and developers.
Using Accelerated Stress Testing to Obtain High Product Reliability
Guest Blogs 7/1/2015 1 comment From design feasibility, to development, to production, having the right information to make good decisions can ultimately keep a product from failing validation. The key is highly focused information that doesn’t come from conventional, statistics-based tests but from accelerated stress testing.
Identifying and Reducing Stresses in Pressure Vessels
Guest Blogs 6/26/2015 2 comments Pressure vessels are part of common equipment utilized in plants to store liquids and gases under high pressure. It is certain that pressurized fluids will develop stresses in the vessel, which when exceeds failure limits, will lead to hazardous incidents and fatalities.
5 Ways to Set Up Your Project for Success
Guest Blogs 6/9/2015 9 comments Experienced project managers know that proper preparation is the key for any successful project launch. To maximize your chances for success, here are five effective project preparation tips.
Flexible Is the New Fast in Redefined Automation and Manufacturing
Guest Blogs 6/5/2015 Post a comment We are entering a new era of manufacturing -- one in which mass production is giving way to mass customization. A global marketplace, built on rich e-commerce platforms and make-to-order product configurations, is making “now” a great time to be a consumer -- but a challenging one to be a manufacturer.
Low-Power FPGAs: Just Like Jumbo Shrimp?
Guest Blogs 5/29/2015 Post a comment FPGAs use programmable fabric to create custom logic, but this flexibility comes at a cost -- usually around 10 times more silicon real estate and 10 times the power dissipation. Can we really claim any FPGA is low power?
How Do International Machine Safety Rules Apply to the US?
Guest Blogs 5/27/2015 Post a comment “How can European standards affect me, especially since I only use machines built in the US?” This is a common question, and one way to answer this is to look at how machine safety is enforced, where the information comes from, and how well you can prove you followed the regulations.
The Supplier Strategic Sourcing Process Explained
Guest Blogs 5/21/2015 Post a comment While people may talk about the procurement process, the procurement discipline actually encompasses a number of different processes. They include spend analysis, supplier relationship management, and contract management, just to name a few.
Mastering Embedded Software Development through the Processor
Guest Blogs 5/11/2015 Post a comment “The Devil is in the details” is a common statement used to describe how a seemingly simple concept may be far more difficult to implement than first meets the eye. For an embedded software developer, understanding these details is crucial to developing an efficient and real-time system.
The End of Throwing It Over the Wall
Guest Blogs 5/8/2015 5 comments We do not need to go back to the days of the workshop where the artist and the craftsman worked side by side, but we do need to get beyond the idea of specializing in one function and pushing a product design down the line to the next colleague.
Plastics Industry Is Hot for Conformal Cooling but Constrained by Additive Technologies
Guest Blogs 5/4/2015 Post a comment Manufacturers of plastic parts recognize the potential of conformal cooling to reduce molding cycle times. Problem is, conformal molds require additive manufacturing (AM), and technologies in that space are still evolving. Costs also can be high, and beyond that, many manufacturing organizations lack the knowledge and expertise needed to apply and incorporate additive technologies into their operations.
Streaming Video Versus Machine Vision: How Do They Compare?
Guest Blogs 5/1/2015 2 comments Machine vision and video streaming systems are used for a variety of purposes, and each has applications for which it is best suited. This denotes that there are differences between them, and these differences can be categorized as the type of lenses used, the resolution of imaging elements, and the underlying software used to interpret the data.
Consider Human Factors Early in the Product Design Cycle
Guest Blogs 4/30/2015 1 comment As today’s product design cycles are held to tighter schedules and budget constraints, it’s becoming even more critical to consider human factors up front to catch and fix problems during the initial development stages, when it’s faster and less costly to do so. Overlooking human factors at the beginning of the design cycle could lead to poor user experience, a decrease in effective product performance, and an increase in safety risk to the user.
How Additive Manufacturing Is Making Injection Molding Cooler
Guest Blogs 4/29/2015 2 comments Plastic part manufacturers are always looking for ways to reduce cycle time and get more productivity out of their injection molding machinery. One of the longstanding constraints in injection molding production has been cooling time. Removing parts from the mold before they have cooled induces warping or shrinking. But wait time works against productivity.
4 Reasons Why It’s a Dynamic Time in Medical Device Design
Guest Blogs 4/28/2015 Post a comment Cost, product development rigor, the patient-as-a-user movement, and consumer electronics that include wireless connectivity are just a few hot topics swirling around medical devices. Each brings challenges that create innovation opportunities. If we briefly look at each one, we can see that one common need will be innovation in simplicity.
UX Design: The Age of Voice Is Here
Guest Blogs 4/24/2015 17 comments The age of touch could soon come to an end. From smartphones and smartwatches, to home devices, to in-car infotainment systems, touch is no longer the primary user interface. Technology market leaders are driving a migration from touch to voice as a user interface.
What Does It Take to Evolve from 2D to 3D CAD Modeling?
Guest Blogs 4/23/2015 2 comments Despite the astronomical benefits offered by 3D modeling, it is quite surprising that nearly 75% of the manufacturing industries still perform design operations using 2D CAD systems. What is the reason that keeps companies hesitant from adopting 3D technology?
Using Energy Harvesting to Power MCUs and FPGAs
Guest Blogs 4/22/2015 4 comments Energy harvesting in particular seems to be moving at an accelerating pace. We now seem to be at a point where it is possible to run low-power systems primarily from energy harvesting sources. This is a big shift from even just a couple of years ago. Three key trends seem to have accelerated this dramatic shift.
Embedded Vision Is Guiding the Path of Smart Industrial Machinery
Guest Blogs 4/14/2015 2 comments The Internet of Things (IoT) is frequently defined by consumer or healthcare applications. It’s important to remember, however, that IoT offers at least as much potential to industry. One of the most promising subsets of industrial IoT is embedded vision -- or machinery that can see, interpret data, and act accordingly.
The series now can interface with a wider array of EtherNet/IP-compliant hardware across many industrial sectors, including factory automation systems, plastic injection molding apparatus, and materials-handling equipment.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.