Editor’s note: Harry Moser’s
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about it? We’d like to hear
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in future issues. Contact harry.
“We Fed It” is a regular series profiling parts feeders for automated assembly. Whether it’s a vibratory bowl, a tray feeder or a flexible robotic system, if you’ve solved a parts-feeding challenge, we’d like to hear about it. Send an e-mail to John Sprovieri, editor of ASSEMBLY, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 630-776-0924.
ASSEMBLY magazine is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. To mark the occasion, we are conducting a series of interviews with manufacturing executives from various industries. “21st Century Assembly” will look back on the technologies and strategies that have made a big impact on manufacturing and—more importantly—look ahead to the future.
Hackers are one of the biggest threats to digital factories and Industry 4.0 initiatives. If conveyors, fastening tools, robots and other equipment are not secure, state-of-the-art production technology can be rendered useless.
At the Components and Logistics facility in Gastonia, NC, Daimler Trucks fulfills orders and sub-assembly of thousands of parts. The plant provides parts for North American truck and school bus manufacturers, as well as auto parts stores.
Manufacturing high-quality products is always serious business, even when the products are used for fun. KTM AG, for example, builds each of its off-road motorcycles with top-notch and thoroughly tested parts so that each model is "ready to race."
During the next decade, more automakers will be adopting 48-volt electrical systems to keep up with evolving driver-assist options, onboard entertainment features and other power-sapping applications. Growing demand for mild-hybrid electric vehicles (MHEVs) is also behind the trend.
In my March editorial, I discussed the impact of steel and aluminum tariffs on assemblers of steel and aluminum products. However, another constituency has also been affected by tariffs: U.S. consumers.
Data analytics, augmented reality, generative design, artificial intelligence, cobots, additive manufacturing and other technologies are already helping manufacturers increase efficiency, reduce downtime, lower prices, differentiate themselves in the marketplace, and improve service, delivery and quality.
In my last column, we looked at the reasons why U.S.-made products resonate with consumers. Studies found a preference for U.S.-made products when concerns about quality, safety and durability were high.