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Realizing the Transformation: IMTS 2020 Advances Digital Manufacturing Technologies

Category: IMTS Sep 18, 2019


“Digital Manufacturing. Implemented.”—the theme for IMTS 2020—reflects advances in technology that are enabling the manufacturing technology community to be a part of the digital ecosystem.

Expect to see a surge of digital manufacturing solutions throughout IMTS 2020, Sept. 14-19, at McCormick Place, Chicago, Ill.

“IMTS 2020 visitors will find digital solutions that they can implement,” says Peter R. Eelman, Vice President & CXO at AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology, which owns and produces IMTS. “Manufacturing requires a broad spectrum of technologies, and IMTS brings together manufacturing expertise from a multitude of sectors. There’s no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution, but you will find it all at IMTS 2020.”

In addition to breakthrough products – such as voice command for CNC milling centers – digital technologies are becoming ingrained as part of familiar solutions, such as cutting tools that communicate wear, temperature, positioning, and vibration.

Tim Shinbara, Vice President & CTO for AMT, says, “Trends to watch for at IMTS 2020 include more collaborations, consortiums, and partnerships among exhibitors, especially those that focus on interoperability. Exhibitors will show visitors how to connect data streams within a production cell, between devices, and at an enterprise level.”

The easiest-to-spot collaborations involve the proliferation of robots and cobots that improve material flow efficiency. A similar example will be in situ quality assurance and metrology solutions that validate specifications before moving the part to the next manufacturing step, such as in situ touch probes and laser scanners. The proliferation of digital components will also correspond with exhibitors showcasing networking, control, communication protocols, and cyber security solutions.

Shinbara adds that, “Instead of promoting faster spindle speeds or other physical metrics, exhibitors will emphasize how their equipment fits into a digital ecosystem. Also, look for technology based around creating a digital twin and how to integrate it into the physics of the manufacturing environment.”

“Successful manufacturers position themselves for any possible future by being prepared. They do that by attending IMTS 2020 and connecting with the companies that will help them remain competitive,” says Eelman.

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