“Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”
– Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., "Strength to Love"
1. Robo-Ghurkas Are Taking Over!
Over the past 12 months, I’ve given a ton of publicity to South Korea for being a world robot superpower. I’ve also hyped up Australia’s efforts in strengthening their manufacturing forces for their armed forces. However, I’ve been sleeping on Singapore! Thankfully, I’ve got the International Federation of Robotics (IFR) to put me in my place: “The country with the highest robot density by far remains Singapore with 918 units per 10,000 employees in 2019. The electronics industry, especially semiconductors and computer peripherals, is the primary customer of industrial robots in Singapore with shares of 75% of the total operational stock.”
2. Tesla Robotics
Here’s some interesting news coming from Tesla: “Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently announced that the company is no longer just a manufacturer of electric cars, but that they are currently dabbling in artificial intelligence with the development of one of the strongest hardware and software AI teams in the world.”
3. Additive for Automotive Tooling
Pivoting from automotive to additive, FreeFORM Technologies printed a complex end-of-arm tooling component for industrial automation firm Allegheny Electric Service using binder jet 3D printing technology from ExOne: “Built using 17-4PH stainless steel, the part is designed to be integrated with a six-axis FANUC robot as part of an automated part inspection system.” This is more evidence of the perfect relationship that can be achieved by integrating automation and inspection. By the way, this adoption of advanced tech yields a component cost savings of 78%!
4. Printing Sustainability
Lately, additive sustainability seems to be popping off. Eco-friendly materials this, innovative methods of repurposing waste that, and now: new projects to reduce the AM environmental footprint. Sure, these are positive steps toward the greater sustainability of AM, but there’s still a way to go before it’s a “fully circular manufacturing technology.” All parties active within the design and manufacturing process and supply chain will be required to play their part in achieving a sustainable production model beyond simply maximizing process and material efficiencies for this to become reality.
5. Printing on Glass
This is for those of us with 3D printers at home. The article not only presents a cogent six-point argument for why you should be printing on a glass bed but also serves as a how-to guide for getting started printing on glass. Happy printing!
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