- SPECIAL REPORTS
Articles by Austin Weber
Batteries are an environmentally friendly form of energy with fewer pollution and disposal issues than other green technologies.
Color affects mood and perception. It’s amazing how a slight change in color can alter the look and feel of a room. I found this out first-hand recently after doing a little painting at home. Whenever I step into an assembly plant, I always try to take a quick look at the color of its floor, walls and equipment. Usually, it’s nothing to get too excited about.
Parts bins have been synonymous with assembly lines ever since the mass-production process was pioneered by Ford Motor Co. engineers 100 years ago.
Compliant mechanisms are jointless, elastic structures that reduce costs and simplify product designs. These single-piece flexible structures elastically deform without joints to produce a desired functionality.
A fully automatic stripping and crimping system might be the “glamour” technology of wire harness assembly shops. However, there’s still plenty of work for handheld electric, pneumatic and manually powered crimping tools.
Today, the plant where BMW assembles the Mini is celebrating its 100th birthday. The first motor car to emerge from the factory in Oxford, England, on March 28, 1913, was a Bullnose Morris Oxford.
Robotic screwdriving offers numerous advantages to manufacturers, such as flexibility and repeatability. However, it’s easy to underestimate the requirements of automation. Sometimes, engineers specify the wrong type of robot or overlook parts feeding issues.
Several issues need to be addressed before there will be more widespread use of robotic screwdriving. Cost, robot design, training, culture and other factors must be considered by manufacturing engineers.
Ford is marking the 150th anniversary of the birth of Henry Ford and the 100th anniversary of the assembly line.
Carbon-fiber reinforced composites are popular in the aerospace and marine industries as a lightweight alternative to aluminum, steel and other metals. The material is also used to produce railcars, wind turbine blades and sporting goods.