Rockwell Automation decided to launch its "CIP Motion" concept in Europe instead of its home base in North America, because it considers Europe to be the front lines of the ongoing fieldbus wars. Unlike other real-time Ethernets that use special protocols and ASICs, Rockwell will employ Intel's new IPX465 chip with its built-in IEEE 1588 synchronization to "puncture the urban myth" that standard Ethernet cannot be used for motion control. Rockwell says that everything a plant does on its communication line—from VoIP, CCTV, machine control, and hundreds of axes of motion control—can be done simultaneously, on the same control and communications equipment.
More and more robots are becoming more autonomous all the time. Now Lockheed Martin has completed a demo mission with two completely autonomous robotic vehicles performing resupply, reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition.
Producing high-quality end-production metal parts with additive manufacturing for applications like aerospace and medical requires very tightly controlled processes and materials. New standards and guidelines for machines and processes, materials, and printed parts are underway from bodies such as ASTM International.
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