I agree and what I found really interesting was the effect of just one part - fasteners - could have on production. I spent my engineering career designing and building test sets for in-house use so the logistics of mass production never entered the equation - each test set was never duplicated more than 2-3 times. I enjoyed reading this article and learning about a well-thought out design for a fastener for OEMs and even more, getting a peek into how challenging the logistics can be for mass production.
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.