DESIGN: A design team from BMW in Landshut, working with engineers from JSP and other specialists, has achieved weight savings of 15 per cent and cost savings of 10 per cent in the construction of rear seat-backs for the BMW 5 Series. Manufacturing has just begun in Wackersdorf for delivery to BMW assembly plants in Germany and China.
The design project began in 2005 and series development of the new Sandwich Seatback started in July 2007. The team’s idea was to use an innovative three-part structure to create a lighter seatback, capable of passing statutory impact tests and BMW’s own test schedule: at its centre is a section of energy-absorbing ARPRO®, with an injection-moulded carrier facing the passengers and a layer of carpet facing the luggage compartment. All three components contribute to impact resistance.
The new sandwich seat back design offers great versatility to BMW who have integrated its manufacture into their cockpit production facility.
BMW calculate that the weight saving totals 1.2 kg on an already ‘weight-reduced’ component. Other benefits include a reduced number of components, the elimination of numerous process steps, and improved recyclability.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
Robots that walk have come a long way from simple barebones walking machines or pairs of legs without an upper body and head. Much of the research these days focuses on making more humanoid robots. But they are not all created equal.
The IEEE Computer Society has named the top 10 trends for 2014. You can expect the convergence of cloud computing and mobile devices, advances in health care data and devices, as well as privacy issues in social media to make the headlines. And 3D printing came out of nowhere to make a big splash.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.