Metal-cutting is a crucial process in metal fabrication. Cutting metals with precision and in required dimensions has been a challenge for several centuries. The growth technology has brought many methods and processes to cut metals in different shapes, sizes, and dimensions that was unimaginable a few decades ago. Today, as metals are being used in more applications, need to reinvent metal cutting technologies have become critical. This edition of the Advanced Manufacturing Technology profiles four such innovations in metal cutting process. The first innovation talks about metal cutting tool holders that reduce the impact of vibrations on the cutting process, while the second innovation is about an aluminum cutting process employed in Tesla Motors, California. Electrochemical Machining process as a replacement for traditional metal cutting tools and a tooling process for automated metal turning operations are the other innovations that are explained in this edition. The ‘Companies to Watch’ section features top companies that are expected to grow in the metal 3D printing in 2016.
The Advanced Manufacturing Technology TechVision Opportunity Engine (TOE) covers global innovations and developments related to manufacturing and industrial automation on a weekly basis. Innovations are focused toward improving product traceability, energy efficiency and reducing environmental footprints, integrating product design and manufacturing aspects for reducing time-to-market. Research focus areas include rapid prototyping (additive manufacturing), lightweighting (multimaterial joining, plastics and metals manufacturing, carbon fiber-based composite manufacturing), smart robotics (agile robots, consumer robots, swarm robotics, cobots), monitoring and control (wireless control networks, human machine interface), and simulation and modeling (design and simulation software).
The Advanced Manufacturing and Automation (AMA) Cluster covers technologies that enable clean, lean and flexible manufacturing and industrial automation. Technologies such as three-dimensional (3D) and four-dimensional (4D) printing, wireless sensors and networks, information and communication technology, multimaterial joining, composites manufacturing, robotics, digital manufacturing, micro- and nano-manufacturing, lasers, advanced software, and printing techniques, are covered as part of this cluster. The technologies covered here impact a wide range of industries, such as the impact semiconductor, automotive and transportation, aerospace and defense, industrial, healthcare, logistics, and electronics industries.
Key words: 3D printing, tooling, cutting tools, metal cutting, computer numerical control, aluminum, tool holders, metals, machining, stamping