NORWALK, CT-Thousands of manufacturing professionals attended the 24th annual ATExpo, which was held Sept. 23 to 25, 2003, at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL. The 3-day event had impressive traffic; 11,397 visitors attended.

Nearly 600 companies exhibited their latest assembly equipment for use in a wide range of manufacturing industries, including automotive, electronics, industrial equipment, medical, computers, household appliances, motors and generators, telecommunications and aerospace.

"Assembly Technology Expo is a reflection of the industry," says Kelvin Marsden-Kish, vice president of Reed Exhibitions. "It is encouraging for all of us in manufacturing to see the amount of activity and quality of the attendee that was present at this year's show."

Highlights included three keynote presentations. Gerald Palmer, vice president of the wheel loaders and excavators division at Caterpillar Inc., opened the show on Tuesday with "Six Sigma is About Success."

Wednesday featured two keynotes. The first was "Flawless Execution," presented by two F-15 fighter pilots from Afterburner Seminars. The second keynote was "Production Engineering for TPS." Presented by Yasuo Tanigawa, vice president of production engineering for Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America, he shared insights into the Toyota Production System.

Dedicated technology pavilions made it easy for attendees to locate specific products and suppliers. The Electronics Assembly Pavilion showcased more than 200 suppliers offering equipment for every phase of the electronics manufacturing process. The Robotics Pavilion let visitors check out robotics and machine vision systems. And with the new Wire Harness Pavilion, attendees could find information about wire processing.

ATExpo 2004 will take place Sept. 28 to 30 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont. The conference begins on Sept. 27. Visit for updated information and registration.