When it comes to bearings, what really bugs the engineers who design with them? Its service life, says 25% of the respondents in a Design News study of power transmission component users. Other top complaints: Lubricant (20%); Load capacity (18%); Cage (11%); Noise (10%); and Speed restrictions (8%). Now for the good news: 30% of engineers expect to buy more bearings in 2003 versus 2002. How much? The bearing market is projected to grow at over 4% annually by 2005, reports the market research company Frost & Sullivan.
A new service lets engineers and orthopedic surgeons design and 3D print highly accurate, patient-specific, orthopedic medical implants made of metal -- without owning a 3D printer. Using free, downloadable software, users can import ASCII and binary .STL files, design the implant, and send an encrypted design file to a third-party manufacturer.
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.