Scottsdale, AZ--Before the month slips away, it's worth
noting that March marks the 20th anniversary of NKK Switches of America. The
company's parent has been manufacturing switches for 50 years and established
its U.S. headquarters here in 1981.
President Kiyoko Toyama says, "Over the past 20 years, we've seen
many ups and downs in the industry, and many companies either lose their
identity or completely disappear. NKK continues to be a stable force in the
industry." She goes on to tell Design News that the first switch developed by
the company is still being sold. The company now has 76 switch families with
more than 3 million part numbers.
Toyama sees future switches becoming more programmable to allow
single switches to have multiple functions-the concept behind NKK's IS switches
that feature an LCD display on top of the push button.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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