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Technology is Turning Art into Science in the Abrasive Machining/Sawing/Finishing Pavilion

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Driven by the need to help manufacturers improve productivity, several companies will unveil the first grinding, honing and sawing machines with online data management capabilities in the Abrasive Machining/Sawing/Finishing Pavilion at IMTS 2016.

“Through cloud-based applications that crunch numbers and provide graphical displays on smart devices, managers will be able to obtain real-time information on operational efficiency,” says John Memmelaar Jr, Vice-President of Royal Master Grinders Inc. “Reports on cycle time, uptime, downtime, error alerts and more are now literally in the palm of your hand.”

“The demand for internet-driven tools to extract and analyze data has reached critical mass, and you’ll see that reflected in the technology showcased at IMTS 2016,” says Peter R. Eelman, Vice President - Exhibitions & Business Development, AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology, the parent organization of IMTS.

Bob Davis, Global Communications Manager, Sunnen Products Company, adds that, “Pavilion visitors will be able to explore a new generation of menu-driven controls and automated set-up functions designed especially for operation by Millennials.”

Turning Art into Science

“We are enabling manufacturers to produce equally good or better results by automating functions that were previously controlled manually,” says Davis. As an example, operators traditionally needed to remove a part from a honing or lapping machine and gage it multiple times before reaching the desired specification. Now, a computer controlled in-process air gage removes the guesswork, decreases cycle time and increases first-pass yield rate. Automated functions enable operators to become more productive and keep work on-shore.

“You have to machine parts quicker, and they have to be right the first time if you’re going to be profitable,” adds Davis.

Trending Tighter

At the same time the industry’s skilled tradesmen are retiring, end-use applications require tighter tolerances than ever to comply with more stringent government regulations. For example, on August 16, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation jointly announced final standards that require up to 25 percent lower carbon emissions and fuel consummation in large vehicles.

“Tighter tolerances on bores and fuel injectors, coupled with the appropriate surface finish, create a better seal and increase efficiency,” says Davis. “Fluid power systems face similar challenges to minimize leakage. We can control tolerances so tightly — sometimes at the sub-micron level — that it’s almost a race to see if we can find a gage to measure them.”

“The systems on display in the Abrasive Machining/Sawing/Finishing Pavilion demonstrate how machine tool builders respond to industry demands and help preserve manufacturing jobs,” concludes Eelman.

Read the press release here.

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