Chemship blazes the trail with wind propelled chemical tanker
Liebherr partners with Rijeka Gateway Future Container Terminal to supply remote yard cranes
L.K. Technology Collaborates with Nezha Motors to Introduce the World's First 20,000-ton Giga Press
Kordsa’s circular production model accredited with ISCC Plus Certification
ECM Reform through the Design Work Improvement Project
OPEN MIND with hyperMILL at EMO 2023
Southco Introduces New Remote Release Accessory for Surface Mount Rotary Actuation
Schneider Electric’s new research shows that digital and electric solutions can cut carbon emissions in office buildings by up to 70%
OPEN MIND: hyperMILL TURNING Solutions at EMO 2023
SE unveils ETAP, a new integrated digital twin platform accelerating digitization across the entire lifecycle of power systems
Southco Introduces New High Strength Rotary Latches with Electronic Actuation and Door Status Sensors
Southco Asia Ltd., a subsidiary of Southco Inc., a leading global provider of engineered access solutions such as locks, latches, captive fasteners, electronic access solutions and hinges/ positioning technology has expanded its rotary latch portfolio with new versions that can enable electronic actuation and provide an electronic door status signal. These new products offer increased security and access control in rugged environments. A symmetric design allows the same product to be used either in right and left hand positions, simplifying integration and inventory management. Southco's new R4-25 products are a response to customer requests for electronic control and monitoring in demanding applications. A 12 volt actuator can actuate the latch with a signal from the customer's control system or a Southco controller. The R4-25 pairs well with Southco's BluetoothTM controller for wireless operation. An integrated sensor communicates when the door striker is present to indicate that the door is closed. The R4-25 latches feature a symmetric design that enables them to be used in either right and left hand positions. This reduces stock requirements, speeds assembly, and improves inventory management. In addition, the integrated cable mounting bracket eliminates the need for the purchase or design of a separate cable mounting bracket. Southco Product Manager Cindy Bart adds, "These new R4-25 rotary latches expand our portfolio of mechanical and electronically actuated rotary latches. We are building on our experience in both areas to bring electronic actuation capability to new markets." For more information about the functionality of R4 Rotary Latches, please visit southco.com or email the 24/7 customer service department at firstname.lastname@example.org
Fifteen years of professional friendship – OPEN MIND Technologies and DAISHIN SEIKI CORPORATION
DAISHIN SEIKI CORPORATION and OPEN MIND Technologies have enjoyed a fruitful relationship for 15 years, working together to solve machining challenges. A motorcycle helmet programmed and milled by DAISHIN acts as OPEN MIND’s central image motif in its marketing materials (key visual). The helmet was a demonstration of the Japanese contract manufacturer’s expertise in using the 5-axis technologies that the hyperMILL CAD/CAM suite can offer. This year, the motorcycle helmet – which has now become a YouTube celebrity in its own right (https://youtu.be/RnIvhlKT7SY)with more than 5.2 million views – is being redesigned. The helmet will continue to be the reference component people associate with hyperMILL. “CEO of DAISHIN SEIKI CORPORATION Ryosuke Omachi’s ingenious idea to mill a motorcycle helmet from a solid to demonstrate his company’s 5-axis machining expertise has been attracting tech-savvy visitors to our booths for years. They even have their picture taken with the YouTube star,” reveals Volker Nesenhöner, CEO of OPEN MIND Technologies AG. “We are delighted to be able to use this and other demonstration parts from DAISHIN, and our marketing team has now given this famous eye-catcher a modern redesign to mark our 15-year collaboration. DAISHIN is a true power user and our development department is greatly appreciative of the valuable feedback this customer provides.” Manufacturer for the motorsport industry DAISHIN is a leading supplier of prototypes for the motorsport industry, among others. The company has also sworn by the CAD/CAM solution and its world-leading 5-axis technology ever since it acquired a customer business that used hyperMILL for programming back in 2008. Motorsports enthusiast Ryosuke Omachi came up with the enduro helmet idea while looking for an almost spherical object to push his new 5-axis milling center from DMG MORI to the limit. The popular YouTube video shows how a 3.6 kg helmet was milled from a 120 kg aluminum block (A7N01-T6). Always keeping up with the times OPEN MIND is staying true to the showcase for 5-axis machining and has modernized how the helmet is depicted. The key visual now shows CAD mesh, CAM toolpaths, and the finished component in one image composition. “Generating the NC code with hyperMILL was a key factor in creating this unique reference component. hyperMILL is easy to use and has great depth with excellent collision avoidance thanks to its powerful strategies. A machining video getting more than five million views is sensational and a testament to the technical achievement that comes from the collaboration between DAISHIN and OPEN MIND,” says Omachi. “The milled helmet still endures as a shining example, and I’m happy that this symbol is now getting a fresh, modern redesign. The world of manufacturing is changing faster and faster, but the relationship between DAISHIN and OPEN MIND, which today can be described as familial, remains unchanged and will continue into the future.” You can find more spectacular processing patterns programmed with hyperMILL, including a crown, an electric guitar, and a Japanese Nō theater mask, on DAISHIN’s YouTube channel.
Yanmar to Commercialize Maritime Hydrogen Fuel Cell System to Decarbonize Ships
Yanmar Power Technology Co., Ltd. (YPT), a subsidiary of Yanmar Holdings, has successfully commercialized a maritime hydrogen fuel cell system towards decarbonization of the maritime industry. The company plans to propose the installation of this system into various ships, including passenger ships, work ships, and cargo ships operating in coastal areas where hydrogen refueling is relatively accessible. In line with the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) revised target of achieving zero net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by around 2050, the maritime sector is pursuing decarbonization efforts. YPT has actively participated in the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism's (MLIT) initiatives to establish safety guidelines for hydrogen fuel cell ships and develop a roadmap for hydrogen utilization in the marine industry. Furthermore, YPT has engaged in multiple initiatives, including navigational tests of demonstration ships equipped with hydrogen fuel cells and conducting high-pressure hydrogen refueling tests for ships. Leveraging their expertise and experience in the marine engine business, Yanmar aims to provide total solutions for decarbonization and digitalization of ships with comprehensive designs covering the entire powertrain of fuel cell ships, encompassing power storage, power management, propulsion, hydrogen storage systems and more. This comprehensive system will support the decarbonization and digitalization of the entire ship. As part of the Yanmar Group's commitment to its YANMAR GREEN CHALLENGE 2050 initiative, the company aims to realize a sustainable society while addressing GHG reduction and minimizing environmental impact. By delivering customized solutions that meet customer needs, Yanmar strives to contribute to solving the challenges facing society. Product Outline Order start date: August 1, 2023 (Tuesday) *Made-to-order Main specifications: Rated output 300kW (customizable) Output voltage Rated: 650Vdc (setting range: 450-700Vdc) Output current Rated: 462A Dimensions W3,400×D1,100×H1,700mm Weight 3,000kg Fuel Hydrogen （ISO14687 type I, Grade D） Exhaust Zero emission (no emissions of CO2, NOx, SOx, PM) Main Features Zero emissions of CO2, NOx, SOx, PM, etc. Low vibration, low noise, and no exhaust gas odor, provides a smooth and comfortable ride. Gas valve unit is built into the system housing for easy installation into ships. The system is equipped with a maritime hydrogen fuel cell module that has received an Approval in Principle (AiP) from ClassNK.(System AiP is currently under application.) Hydrogen Fuel Cell System Technology Page https://www.yanmar.com/global/about/technology/vision1/fuel_cell_system/ Yanmar Green Challenge 2050 https://www.yanmar.com/global/about/ygc/ ### *1 Location: National Institute of Technology and Evaluation (NITE) National Laboratory for advanced energy storage technologies (NLAB)
Schneider Electric’s Sarel site invests in industrial performance and carbon reduction improvements
Schneider Electric, the leader in the digital transformation of energy management and automation, opened a new roll forming workshop at its Sarel factory in Alsace, France on July 5. Founded in 1956, the Sarel site specializes in the production of electrical cabinets, boxes and enclosures. Within the factory, steel is cut, folded, punched, screwed, welded, fitted with accessories and painted and the finished products–built to withstand heavy usage in tough environments–are then dispatched fully assembled or in parts. In 2021, Sarel had the third highest energy consumption of all Schneider Electric's sites, due mainly to the site's energy-intensive painting and baking processes. These investments will help reduce energy usage: the new machines consume three to four times less energy than their older counterparts, with a return on investment of about three years. The rest of the investment will be used to replace other old machines, boosting the site's overall productivity. "Across all of our sites, we are taking decisive actions to reduce our energy consumption and decarbonize our operations," stated Laurent Bataille, President of Schneider Electric France. "The Sarel factory is a best-in-class example of our Group-wide commitment to achieve net-zero emissions for our own operations and reduce our CO2 emissions by 25% across our entire value chain by 2030." Decarbonizing the factory with energy efficiency and innovation To meet its ambitious carbon emission reduction targets and be more energy efficient, the site has switched to LED lighting and optimized its heating and energy-intensive processes, helping to cut energy consumption by 25% in May 2022 (compared to May 2019). From July onwards, the site's burners begin transitioning from gas to electricity and an electric heat pump will soon be installed. All processes will be decarbonized between 2025 and 2026. Later this year, the first product made using green steel, produced using a fully electrified process, will leave the factory. It will be distributed in packaging without plastic wrap because decarbonizing all operations also means using low-carbon raw materials.
Southco Introduces New Universal Latch Sensor
Southco Asia Ltd., a subsidiary of Southco Inc., a leading global provider of engineered access solutions such as locks, latches, captive fasteners, electronic access solutions and hinges/ positioning technology has introduced a Universal Latch Sensor (ULS) for enhanced security and constant monitoring. Southco's Universal Latch Sensor is a simple magnet that attaches to an existing latch, and a magnetic sensor that attaches to the inside of an existing door frame. When the door is closed, and the latch is engaged, the magnet comes into proximity with the sensor, sending an electronic signal to your security system. This lets you know the door is closed and the latch is secure. This signal from the ULS can be used in a variety of ways, from integrating security systems, to turning on existing lights inside an enclosure. Regardless of the application, the ULS can be easily integrated to provide more reliable monitoring of the status of a latch. Where door sensors may return a "closed" signal even if the door is unlocked, the Universal Latch sensor monitors the latch itself, so users always know if their door is closed, and their latch is secure. For example, it can be used to turn on indicator lights on a dashboard when a latch is open, or internal lighting, illuminating the inside of an enclosure or storage area before the hinges move. Southco also offers a sensor with built-in LED's that automatically illuminate when the latch is opened, removing the need for additional lighting in small spaces. For more information about the Universal Latch Sensor, please visit southco.com or email the 24/7 customer service department at email@example.com
Robosen Robotics Teams Up with Hasbro to Debut TRANSFORMERS Grimlock
Robosen Robotics (Robosen.com), a leading innovator in the field of robotics, today announced TRANSFORMERS Grimlock Auto-Converting Robot - Flagship Collector's Edition (robosen.com/us/grimlock-g1-flagship), the world’s first dual-form, bipedal walking robot. Through Robosen’s partnership with Hasbro, the robot will be on display at the Hasbro Pulse Booth #3213 at San Diego Comic-Con for fans to get an up-close and personal look of their favorite Dinobot. Pre-order begins today through September 30th on Robosen.com and Hasbro Pulse (hasbropulse.com/products/transformers-grimlock-auto-converting-robot-flagship-collectors-edition), ensuring enthusiasts have ample opportunity to secure their Collector’s Edition at a special pre-order price of $1,499. Scheduled shipping is late Fall, with a retail price of $1,699. Equipped with an advanced SOC chip technology and a comprehensive robot operating system, this Flagship Collector’s Edition robot represents the epitome of auto-conversion. It stands as the world's first dual-form, bipedal walking robot, pushing the boundaries of articulation and movement. With 34 high-precision intelligent servos and an array of 85 microchips, the robot exhibits seamless conversion capabilities while delivering smooth motions. Additionally, the inclusion of 6-axis IMU sensors ensures constant balance monitoring, providing unparalleled stability. In development since 2016, Grimlock boasts an array of impressive mechanical engineering and advancements in robotics that sets it apart as a must-have interactive robot for avid collectors and enthusiasts. Crafted using the finest materials such as polymers, nanomaterials and superalloys, this robot showcases exceptional build quality, and leverages advanced processing methods including laser etching and precision carving, showcasing meticulous attention to detail. Voice interaction plays a central role in the immersive experience, featuring 150+ original Generation 1 Transformers audio lines, voiced exclusively for Robosen by Gregg Berger, the original voice of G1 Grimlock. These authentic sound bites are synchronized with robotic actions, creating an engaging entertainment experience. Users can interact with the robot through 42 voice commands, enabling hands-free control for conversion, walking, and various stunning stunts. Controlling Grimlock has never been easier thanks to the accompanying app. With Bluetooth BLE 5.0 connectivity, users can remotely control the robot's auto-conversion, movements and impressive actions directly from their mobile devices. The app also offers an immersive "MiniTheater" feature, allowing users to enjoy captivating solo performances in SoloPlay mode or coordinate thrilling displays in MultiPlay mode. Collaborate with either Flagship or Elite Optimus Prime to defeat the Decepticons in epic battle reenactments and prepare for future adventures with other Robosen TRANSFORMERS robots. To further elevate the playability of Grimlock, Robosen provides four programming modes. Users can create new actions for the robot using block-based programming, where modules can be dragged to set angles and speeds, replicating classic scenes from the movies. Intelligent manual manipulation allows for direct adjustments of joints to quickly create robot movements. Voice programming offers a hands-on approach, allowing users to give multiple command words in sequence and easily create customized robot performances. For those seeking the ultimate programming experience, computer-based 3D programming software is recommended to unlock Grimlock's full potential. “We invite fans and collectors to embrace the future of robotics and experience the unmatched craftsmanship and innovation with our latest edition to our collection,” said Sean Tang, Director of Robosen USA. “We’re excited for them to own the most powerful Dinobot in the world.” “Robosen continues to impress with their cutting-edge tech masterpieces. The state-of-the-art engineering on this incredible new Grimlock robot represents the Transformers brand in a way that has never been done before—until today, and we’re excited to showcase the beloved Dinobot for our fans at San Diego Comic-Con,” said Casey Collins, President of Global Licensed Consumer Products and Business Development, Hasbro. “Our Transformers Robosen line proves our ongoing commitment to innovation and powering the imagination of future generations for years to come.” Each purchase of the Grimlock Auto-Converting Robot includes a collector’s coin featuring a unique serial number, adding an exclusive touch to this collectible. Furthermore, the robot comes with accessories such as the Crown, Galaxial Rocket Launcher, and Energon Sword, enhancing the play and display possibilities for enthusiasts.
OPEN MIND repositions hyperMILL
The CAM system is set to play an increasingly centralized role in digitalization strategies at manufacturing companies in the future. This is the point that OPEN MIND Technologies AG is emphasizing at the moment. Connecting the systems used throughout the production process is a core requirement for CAM systems to take on this role. The company behind the hyperMILL® CAD/CAM suite further underscored this point through its acquisition of MES specialist Hummingbird Systems GmbH in early 2022. Integration of CAM and MES is just one example of the communication capacities that will be required by CAM systems in the future. “Everyone is talking about digitalization, Industry 4.0, and the Internet of Things. Small to medium-sized enterprises with machining operations want to know how they can keep up,” says Michael Förster, Senior Product Marketing Manager at OPEN MIND Technologies AG. “With NC code generated from CAD data, each of these companies has a digital process already in place. This can serve as a starting point, with connectivity having a key role to play.” Based on OPEN MIND’s experience, the comprehensive digitalization strategies of large companies are in many cases too broad for SMEs. A more suitable approach would be to seek out digitalization solutions in steps, starting with the CAD/CAM system. There are different strategies available based on the company’s IT landscape: linking the process in and around CAD, CAM, and NC data to a product lifecycle management (PLM) system or manufacturing execution system (MES). This enables the integration of a tool management system, making CAD data accessible company-wide, and using bidirectional communication with the machine controls. Advanced processes According to OPEN MIND, the flow of data from design to production can help optimize the process through better networking. Simulations based on real NC codes and advanced optimization processes are made possible based on bidirectional communication between the CAM system and machine controller. Accompanying e-paper on the topic In an e-paper, OPEN MIND provides answers to the question of “what role the CAD/CAM system will play in an increasingly connected world.” The e-paper is available for download on the CAD/CAM manufacturer’s website. https://www.openmind-tech.com/en/cam/connected-manufacturing/
Bentley Systems Announces New Capabilities for Carbon Assessment in iTwin Experience
Bentley Systems, Incorporated (Nasdaq: BSY), the infrastructure engineering software company, is announcing at the Environment Analyst Global Business Summit, the availability of new carbon assessment capabilities in iTwin Experience to enable infrastructure professionals to seamlessly quantify carbon reduction opportunities in their projects. The Summit takes place June 27 and 28 in Chicago. With the new capabilities, infrastructure professionals can fully automate embodied carbon calculation reports and impact analyses by taking advantage of iTwin Experience, enabling them to explore multiple design choices faster and eliminate manual data exports and normalization. In 2022, Bentley developed an integration service in the iTwin Platform to automate the process of generating embodied carbon reports for infrastructure projects via One Click LCA and EC3. Reports are initiated using the iTwin Platform and then viewed in One Click LCA or EC3. Now, iTwin Experience provides a ready-to-go, bi-directional integration with EC3, enabling carbon assessments to be visualized in a digital twin without the need to write code. iTwin Experience exports a data model to EC3, a free tool for which users need to be separately registered, which performs the embodied carbon calculations and returns results that iTwin Experience seamlessly reads and visualizes. Organizations that want to include carbon assessment workflows in their infrastructure projects without developing proprietary iTwin-powered apps will benefit from the newly available carbon calculation capabilities in iTwin Experience. The capabilities also unlock the integration of carbon assessment workflows with other Bentley products and solutions for designing and managing infrastructure projects. The capabilities are being released in Preview and will be available for a restricted number of partners and early adopters. Kaustubh Page, Director of Product Management with Bentley Systems, said, “Lifecycle assessments, environmental footprint analyses, and reports are becoming standard requirements for infrastructure projects worldwide. Designers and environmental engineers spend critical time generating environmental assessments or reports. Because the required data needed to be manually exported from multiple design authoring tools and then aggregated and verified, generating these environmental assessments has been a time-consuming and potentially error-prone process. With these new capabilities built into iTwin Experience, it is feasible to transform what is typically a six-month process into a six-minute workflow. Our goal is for iTwin Experience users to spend their valuable time on designing, optimizing, and making better decisions, faster – not exporting, aggregating, and validating data.” Rodrigo Fernandes, Director of ES(D)G with Bentley Systems, said, “We want to enable users to implement carbon analysis and optimization as a natural, repeatable, and standardized procedure, as part of managing every type of infrastructure project, anywhere in the world. The sooner that carbon assessment is integrated into an infrastructure project, the bigger the carbon reduction opportunities will be. This announcement is focused on embodied carbon, particularly relevant in the early project stages, but iTwin Experience unleashes opportunities for telling the whole ‘carbon story’ of an infrastructure project and asset. We are genuinely unlocking environmental footprint assessments powered by infrastructure digital twins.” Mark Tablante, Design Technology Director with Burns & MacDonnell, said, “Electrification is a critical component to meeting the world’s decarbonization goals. There is a tremendous amount of capital investment needed in electric T&D infrastructure and a carbon-efficient design makes the most of every dollar spent to further decarbonization. Tracking and reporting on progress toward utilities’ net zero goals is important to not only their shareholders, but for the future of our world. Burns & McDonnell is working with Bentley to test their new iTwin-powered carbon reporting capabilities for the electric utility industry. Our sustainability engineers and environmental group are proud to work with our clients and technology partners to help develop vendor agnostic solutions for a brighter future. We look forward to integrating these services and continuing helping our clients track carbon and reach their net zero goals.”
Liebherr Container Cranes delivers semi-automated ship to shore container crane to Patrick Terminals - Brisbane Autostrad
Liebherr Container Cranes Ltd., is excited to unveil a video highlighting the advanced automation capabilities of its new cabinless ship-to-shore container crane. This cutting- edge crane has recently entered service at Patrick Terminals - Brisbane AutoStrad in Australia, where it is already hard at work handling container vessels and automated landside operations. The crane features extensive automation and utilises Liebherr’s Remote Operator Station (ROS) for pick and place over the vessel and for exception handling. The ROS allows the same level of crane control as an on- board operator but from the comfort of an office-based environment. This semi-automated crane is the first of its kind for Patrick Terminals, and one of the first cabinless Liebherr ship to shore container cranes to enter service globally, underscoring Liebherr's commitment to driving technological progress in the port equipment industry. Liebherr has previously delivered fully automated and cabinless rail-mounted gantry (RMG) cranes. In addition, Liebherr has many automated ship-to-shore (STS) and rubber-tired gantry (RTG) cranes on order, with several scheduled to be operational in the coming months, reinforcing Liebherr's position as a pioneer in providing safe and secure automated solutions. We are thrilled to unveil the automation capabilities of our Liebherr ship-to-shore crane at Patrick Terminals - Brisbane AutoStrad," said Declan O’Sullivan, General Manager Sales at Liebherr Container Cranes Ltd. "This achievement signifies our dedication to working hand in hand with our clients to push the boundaries of port automation and providing cutting-edge solutions that transform operations. Through this video, we aim to showcase the power of automation in enhancing port efficiency, safety, and profitability.” Michael Jovicic, CEO, Patrick Terminals said, “The introduction of the new semi-automated Liebherr ship-to-shore crane with a remote-control operator's station marks a significant milestone in the Patrick Terminals crane fleet. We are proud to have collaborated with Liebherr Container Cranes on this ground- breaking project, delivering a crane that aligns with our unwavering commitment to safety and efficiency. This innovative addition enhances our operations and underscores our dedication to embracing technology.” Patrick Terminals - Brisbane Autostrad has two Liebherr ship to shore container cranes, the first unit was supplied in 2015 and has recently undergone a lift height and outreach extension using the innovative and patented Liebherr transform technology. The new crane features an outreach of 54 m, a backreach of 48 m, a lift height over rail of 40 m and a span of 25.3 m.
Printed & Flexible Electronics: Status, Innovations and Prospects, Discussed by IDTechEx
Author: Dr Matthew Dyson, Principal Technology Analyst at IDTechEx What do electronic skin patches, thin-film flexible photovoltaics and automotive interior consoles have in common? All are produced using printed & flexible electronics, an alternative approach to conventional printed circuit boards that combines additive manufacturing with flexible substrates. Bringing benefits such as rapid prototyping, improved sustainability, scope for form factor differentiation and even stretchability, printed & flexible electronics is gaining traction across an extremely diverse range of applications. IDTechEx’s new report “Flexible & Printed Electronics 2023-2033: Forecasts, Technologies, Markets” provides a comprehensive overview of what can seem a bewilderingly broad topic. By summarizing IDTechEx’s extensive printed/flexible electronics report portfolio and drawing on years of following this developing industry, the report outlines innovations, opportunities, and trends across 5 sectors of the printed and flexible electronics market: automotive, consumer goods, energy, healthcare/wellness, and infrastructure/buildings/industrial. This analysis includes granular forecasts of 50 distinct applications and 40 detailed company profiles. Additionally, the report outlines developments across multiple underlying technologies: 6 distinct manufacturing modalities (including in-mold electronics and flexible hybrid electronics), 5 material types (including conductive inks and component attachment materials), and 4 component types (including flexible ICs). Multiple recent examples, acquired from interviews and industry conferences, show technology development directions and successful commercialization. Assessments of technological and commercial readiness, along with additional forecasts for manufacturing methods and conductive inks, are also included. Application Opportunities As with conventional PCBs, printed & flexible electronics has applications across most market verticals. For example, electronic skin patches utilizing conductive inks for electrodes and contacts are already available, as are printed pressure-sensitive insoles for gait monitoring. Conformality lends itself to automotive interiors, where printed/flexible electronics is utilized for lighting, heating and touch-sensitive interfaces. Organic photovoltaics is seeing a renaissance, with recent commercial examples including both building integration and indoor energy harvesting. Sensors based on printed electronics for asset tracking and preventative maintenance promise low production costs novel form factors to suit specific requirements. Innovations Printed & flexible electronics represents a fundamentally different approach to manufacturing, replacing subtractive removal of laminated copper with additive deposition of conductive ink. This reduces waste and facilitates digital manufacturing with the associated benefits of rapid prototyping and straightforward design adjustments. The report evaluates a range of manufacturing innovations and their prospects, ranging from fully additive 3D electronics to in-mold electronics and emerging digital printing methods with resolutions as small as 1 μm. Material innovations underpin many emerging hardware technologies, and printed electronics is no exception. Conductive inks underpin the technology, with dozens of companies developing inks with a range of compositions and attributes. Viscous silver-flake-based ink for screen printing dominates, but alternatives such as nano-particle and particle-free inks are gaining traction for specific applications such as EMI shielding. An especially notable trend is the development of copper ink, which promises a substantial cost reduction over its silver counterparts. Other specialized materials include ultra-low temperature solder and field-aligned anisotropic conductive adhesives enable components such as LEDs to be securely attached to cheaper, thermally fragile substrates. Furthermore, many sensors require specialist materials, such as printable piezoelectric polymers for vibration sensing and functionalized carbon nanotubes for ion detection. While the original vision for printed and flexible electronics was to print every aspect of the circuit, including the integrated circuit, this has largely been supplanted by flexible hybrid electronics (FHE), which combines printed and mounted functionality. As such, there is an opportunity for natively flexible integrated circuits, batteries, and displays. Factors motivating the adoption of printed and flexible electronics. Source: IDTechEx Building on Expertise IDTechEx has been researching developments in the printed and flexible electronics market for well over a decade. Since then, IDTechEx have stayed close to technical and commercial developments, interviewing key players worldwide, annually attending conferences such as FLEX and LOPEC, delivering multiple consulting projects, and running classes/ workshops on the topic. “Flexible & Printed Electronics 2023-2033: Forecasts, Technologies, Markets” utilizes this experience and expertise to summarize IDTechEx’s knowledge and insight across the entire field. To find out more, including downloadable sample pages, please visit www.IDTechEx.com/PE
Liebherr to supply three automated, dual trolley, ship to shore container cranes to HHLA
Liebherr Container Cranes, a leading European manufacturer of innovative port equipment, is pleased to announce the sale of three large dual trolley ship to shore container cranes (STS) to Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA) for use at their container terminal Altenwerder (CTA) in the Port of Hamburg. The terminal has consistently been at the forefront of the industry, constantly adopting innovative solutions and cutting-edge technology, making it a pioneer in its field. The advanced cranes mark a significant milestone in Liebherr's longstanding partnership with HHLA. Following the successful delivery of two STS cranes in 2015 and three in 2017 to HHLA’s Container Terminal Tollerort, the newly acquired dual trolley cranes are the first step in a new strategic alliance, marking the beginning of a closer collaboration between the two companies. Together, HHLA and Liebherr will drive forward innovative and sustainable change in the logistics industry. The cranes have a safe working load of 75 t twin lift at an outreach of 61 m, lift height of 53 m, back reach of 24.5 and a span of 35 m. Automation and remote control for optimised operations The cabinless cranes will operate entirely through automation and remote control. Liebherr's automation technology enables autonomous operation for most of the cycle but facilitates remote control via the Liebherr Remote Operator Station (ROS), for pick and place on the vessel, providing operators the same level of control as an on-board operator, but in a comfortable office-based environment. With two trolleys operating on a single crane, dual trolley STS cranes offer exceptional operational flexibility and increased efficiency. The primary trolley handles container transfers between the ship and the landside, while the secondary portal trolley can simultaneously handle transfers from the crane to the automated guided vehicles. This parallel operation decouples the landside and seaside operations, reducing wait times and significantly improving vessel turnaround times. This enhances operational safety, maximises productivity, and optimises operations at the container terminal. Sustainable European based manufacturing and service With its rich European heritage, Liebherr is uniquely positioned to cater to the specific needs of HHLA. Liebherr Hamburg, dedicated to servicing maritime cranes, is based in the Port of Hamburg. Its team of technicians, large parts warehouse, and proximity to HHLA’s terminals ensures seamless support and unparalleled service for HHLA's crane fleet, cementing the strong partnership between the two companies. The strategic collaboration between Liebherr and HHLA represents a shared vision for the future of port operations. By systematically reducing greenhouse gas emissions across its operations, HHLA's CTA terminal is the world's first certified climate-neutral container handling facility. This certification reflects HHLA’s proactive approach towards achieving environmental sustainability goals, in alignment with global efforts to mitigate climate change. With a shared environmental vision, Liebherr Container Cranes, has achieved a gold medal in sustainability from EcoVadis. This award illustrates Liebherr's dedication to sustainable practices and positions them as the preferred choice for terminals where sustainability is a core value. Liebherr's dual trolley ship-to-shore container cranes are not only at the forefront of technological innovation but also prioritise energy efficiency. They are designed to minimise energy consumption and optimise operational efficiency. Energy regeneration and capture is a key feature of the cranes and is carried out at both the primary and portal trolley hoist drives, enhancing the power consumption of the crane. The use of advanced automation algorithms further reduces energy consumption per container moved, contributing to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly operation. "We are delighted to deepen our partnership with HHLA through the sale of these innovative dual trolley ship-to-shore container cranes," said Gerry Bunyan, Managing Director - Sales at Liebherr Container Cranes. "The combination of advanced automation, remote control capabilities, and industry-leading energy saving features, makes these cranes a perfect fit for HHLA's sustainability requirements. Together, we are shaping the future of port handling. This is the second order we have received for our dual trolley cranes, following an earlier order for Eurogate’s CTW terminal. This continued demand demonstrates the industry's appetite for European manufacturing and design, backed up by a local service.” “From day one Container Terminal Altenwerder has set itself apart as an industry pioneer, leading the integration of the newest technology to optimize its operations sustainably. It is with great pleasure that we announce our enhanced collaboration with Liebherr, as we continue to leverage the latest advancements in technology and automation. The state-of-the-art cranes will empower CTA to meet the demands of the future while optimizing operations and enhance our overall performance, ultimately benefiting our customers”, said Patrick Krawutschke, Managing Director of Container Terminal Altenwerder. By choosing Liebherr Container Cranes, HHLA secures a trusted partner with a proven track record in delivering energy-efficient and sustainable solutions. The technological advancements, combined with Liebherr's commitment to environmental responsibility, position Liebherr Container Cranes as the preferred choice for terminals like CTA seeking to optimize their operations while minimizing their carbon footprint.
Stratasys And Desktop Metal To Merge: A Milestone For Consolidation In Additive Manufacturing, Reports IDTechEx
Author: Sona Dadhania, Technology Analyst at IDTechEx In the past decade or so, the additive manufacturing industry has been characterized by an ever-increasing number of hardware players trying to capture their own share of the market. While there were signs of consolidation in the early 2010s, given major moves by industry leaders like Stratasys and 3D Systems, AM has instead seen a consistent stream of newcomers with their own innovative takes on AM, such that IDTechEx now segments their 3D printing hardware forecast by seventeen different categories to account for such diversity. New entrants in AM have also been bolstered by ever-increasing amounts of funding, with IDTechEx tracking over USD$1.3 billion in publicly announced investment in 3D printing-related companies in 2022 (up from over USD$950 million in 2021). Such expansion in the 3D printing industry, which IDTechEx has covered for nearly a decade, has led to hundreds of companies being featured in IDTechEx's "3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing 2023-2033: Technology and Market Outlook" report. The report features granular 10-year market forecasts with 17 hardware and 10 material segments, technology analyses, benchmarking studies on AM hardware and materials, and market discussions that look at the future of the 3D printing industry, forecast by IDTechEx to hit US$41 billion in 2033. Part of this discussion looked at the high number of new players and technologies entering AM, which showed that AM space wasn't yet consolidating to a small group of major players – rather, it was growing. But that may change with this latest major news announcement. Two 3D printing industry titans, Stratasys and Desktop Metal, announced their merger on May 25th, 2023, marking a significant milestone in the additive manufacturing industry. The two companies struck an all-stock deal that values the combined company at USD$1.8 billion, expected to close in Q4 2023. Subject to final approvals, Stratasys shareholders are expected to own 59% of the combined entity, with Desktop Metal shareholders owning the other 41%. In the past few years, both Stratasys and Desktop Metal have engaged significantly in M&A. The latter has acquired half a dozen companies, including ExOne and EnvisionTEC, to grow their technology portfolio well beyond metal additive manufacturing to include polymers, ceramics, and composites. The former, strictly in the polymer space, has added three polymer technologies with their 2021 acquisitions of Xaar 3D, Origin, and RPS, and additionally expanded their polymer materials portfolio with the 2022 acquisition of Covestro's AM business unit (itself formed from Covestro's acquisition of DSM's Resins and Functional Materials business). However, this merger, which has been in the works for the past year, is by far the biggest transaction that Desktop Metal and Stratasys have undertaken in recent years – it's arguably one of the most significant mergers ever in the 3D printing space. Desktop Metal CEO and Chairman, Ric Fulop, stated, "We believe this is a landmark moment for the additive manufacturing industry. The combination of these two great companies marks a turning point in driving the next phase of additive manufacturing for mass production. We are excited to complement our portfolio of production metal, sand, ceramic and dental 3D printing solutions with Stratasys' polymer offerings. Together, we will strive to build an even more resilient offering with a diversified customer base across industries and applications to drive long-term sustainable growth. We look forward to combining with Stratasys to deliver profitability while driving further innovation for a larger customer base and providing expanded opportunities for our employees." The diversity of the combined company's technology portfolio is one of the most significant results of the merger, putting them in direct competition against other AM hardware providers that offer both metal and polymer printers, such as 3D Systems and EOS. Desktop Metal and Stratasys will offer eight different additive technologies once merged, covering polymer, metal, ceramic, composite, wood, and sand materials. "I'm excited about the technical synergies," Fulop commented. "They're significant. This merger will drive accelerated innovation. We have materials that will push PolyJet into mass production. We have synergies on software and go-to-market, we have 7,000 customers that will be introduced to a distribution network much larger than ours. This is a fantastic combination. I can't imagine a better partnership." With such a major merger underway, it does beg the question of whether this is a turning point for additive manufacturing. Will this be the first of many consolidating moves in 3D printing, indicating that the industry is maturing? Still, it is difficult to place additive manufacturing, as an entire industry, at a certain stage of growth or maturity. Numerous different 3D printing technologies all fall under the same additive manufacturing umbrella, each at different stages of maturity; while some technologies may be ripe for consolidation, others have barely begun growing. So, while the Stratasys and Desktop Metal merger may signal a step change in M&A for AM, it may also just be one notable event during AM's continued phase of expansion in hardware players. IDTechEx will continue to monitor whether 2023 heralds more major milestones for additive manufacturing players and any effects on the 3D printing landscape. For more details on the many players, acquisitions, and market trends within the 3D printing industry, please see the IDTechEx market report "3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing 2023-2033: Technology and Market Outlook". For more information on IDTechEx's other reports and market intelligence offerings, please visit www.IDTechEx.com/Research
New streamlined Alfa Laval Unique Mixproof CIP and Process valves meet market demand
Alfa Laval is unveiling two new hygienic valves, the Alfa Laval Unique Mixproof CIP and Unique Mixproof Process, extending its hygienic double-seat valve range to meet market demands. With the introduction of these two innovative mixproof valves, manufacturers concerned about product integrity now have a cost-effective way to enhance product safety while boosting process efficiency and sustainability. Proven performance, refined for purpose These two newcomers are built on proven performance, yet refined for purpose. The Unique Mixproof CIP is a double-seat valve that safely and efficiently manages the flow of cleaning media during cleaning-in-place (CIP). The Unique Mixproof Process, a compact version of proven Alfa Laval double-seat valves, is configurable and available in various sizes to meet manufacturers’ fundamental hygienic processing requirements. Both are capable of simultaneously routing two different fluids without the risk of cross-contamination, thereby contributing to more uptime and reduced total cost of ownership. “These new Unique Mixproof valves deliver product safety, process flexibility, straightforward maintenance, and opportunities for water and CIP media savings,” says Anders M. Lyhne, Product Portfolio Manager, Alfa Laval. Reliable, cost-effective product protection Manufacturers can rely on the Unique Mixproof CIP and Unique Mixproof Process for cost-effective product safety. Alfa Laval double seat technology with seat lift keeps the fluids separated, ensuring efficient cleaning and complete protection against the intrusion of harmful microorganisms. With a fully balanced design, the valves can easily handle high pressure without the risk of pressure shocks. Moreover, they are certified according to FDA, 3A and other recognized standards. Greater process flexibility Enhance the reliability and flexibility of manufacturing process setups with proven valve technology that matches specific production requirements. Like the entire Alfa Laval Unique Mixproof range, the Unique Mixproof CIP and Unique Mixproof Process valves are compact and modular, offering greater process flexibility. Modular in design and available in types and sizes that suit different applications, the Unique Mixproof CIP and Unique Mixproof Process valves help manufacturers adapt to changing process requirements. Using these valves in combination with the Alfa Laval ThinkTop control units offers even greater process flexibility and control. Simplified service Built on the Alfa Laval Unique SSV and Mixproof platforms, these hygienic top-loaded double-seat valves minimize the risk of unplanned downtime while spending as little time and resources as possible on routine maintenance. Proven seal technology with defined compression extends the intervals between service, while a maintenance-free actuator with no adjustable components maximizes uptime and minimizes the total cost of ownership. Enhanced sustainability Combined with Alfa Laval ThinkTop, these new Unique Mixproof valves eliminate unnecessary product loss while delivering up to 90% savings in water and CIP media . The reduced use of CIP fluids contributes to a lower total cost of ownership while minimizing the environmental impact in the process industries. Good for people, good for business, and good for the planet. To learn more, visit www.alfalaval.com/UniqueMixproof/news
Process industry press release: Alfa Laval moves forward to the intelligent pump with new monitoring software
“This is a big step for the hygienic industries. Our new Alfa Laval Analytics solution detects potential machine faults before they occur and helps diagnose the root cause. In close dialogue with our customers, we have developed an easy-to-use and reliable solution that brings peace of mind and keeps equipment at peak performance at all times, says Torsten Pedersen, Head of Connectivity and Monitoring at Alfa Laval Fluid Handling. Alfa Laval Analytics is a value-adding feature that can be added to all new and existing pump installations from Alfa Laval. The solution includes a one-year subscription, including online installation, training in use of dashboard and ongoing support. Always by your side 24/7 Alfa Laval Analytics collects and analyzes pump vibration data around the clock. The philosophy behind the development of the AI-based solution has been to create peace of mind for plant operators and management. Analytics provides a clear and intuitive overview of the health condition of the equipment through a simple dashboard. Green for ok, yellow for pay attention, orange for warning and red for immediate action. “No matter where they are and regardless of time, operators and plant managers can check plant status in their pocket. All it takes is a brief glance on the app dashboard to check the health status of the pumps and take action if needed to prevent costly downtime”, says Torsten Pedersen. He explains that Analytics not only detects faults, but also pinpoints the likely causes of the problem, which can for instance be related to misalignment of pump installation, potential process improvements or mechanical faults. “The diagnostics capabilities of the Analytics tool make it much easier for operators and technicians to locate the problem fast and fix it before any damage is done. When running Analytics, we can even extend the warranty on equipment if the pumps are monitored continuously and if recommendations to inspection and repair are followed”, says Torsten Pedersen. Enabling predictive maintenance With its ability to predict failure and identify parts that need repair or replacement, Analytics paves the way for implementing predictive maintenance strategies that eliminate extra cost and prevent unplanned downtime. At the same time, Analytics supports the sustainability agenda by allowing plants to do more with less. By keeping assets running flawlessly at all times, Analytics enhances energy efficiency and helps reduce carbon emissions. Alfa Laval Analytics is a cyber secure solution. All data is transmitted via mobile network and requires no connection to the plant’s internet. Analytics is part of the Connected Services programme from Alfa Laval. New services are added on an ongoing basis to leverage the potential of Industry 4.0 technologies. The technical set-up of Alfa Laval Analytics Analytics is enabled by the CM Connect Gateway and comes with a 12 months subscription. Installation and commissioning is simple, carried out by use of an app that guides the user in easy to follow steps. The subscription gives access to dashboard, provides notifications with recommended actions, and support from Alfa Laval. To learn more, visit www.alfalaval.com/analytics
IDTechEx Asks How Smart Packaging Can Best Add Value
Author: Dr Matthew Dyson, Principal Technology Analyst at IDTechEx What is packaging for? From its initial purpose of simply protecting the product to driving sales via consumer engagement, the role of packaging has substantially evolved. Smart/intelligent packaging continues this trend towards greater functionality, employing sensors, printed electronics, and wireless communication to add value in novel ways. With applications from logistics labeling to greater consumer engagement IDTechEx’s latest report, “Smart Packaging 2023-2033”, finds that the market for smart packaging electronics will be worth around US$2.6 billion by 2033. But what are the use cases where smart packaging can best create value? Parcel Tracking Labels Condition monitoring and location tracking throughout the logistics chain improves consumer confidence, especially for high-value items or those that may be easily damaged. While these technologies are already deployed at the pallet level using separate devices, smart packaging can enable such tracking at a crate or even an item level. Technologies such as printed/flexible batteries and sensors enable reduced costs and bulk, enabling the condition of individual deliveries to be tracked. Logistics companies and even insurers can track when/where individual items are being lost, stolen or mistreated, enabling any problems to be dealt with swiftly as well as providing a considerable deterrent effect. Logistics labeling can also provide value to ‘click-and-collect’ businesses in which stores serve the same order fulfillment role as distribution centers. Real-time item-level tracking, enabled by smart packaging, can improve the accuracy of the required more complex inventory management systems to enable different parts of the value chain to take on the fulfillment role. Material Identification for Recycling Modern recycling processes fall significantly short of what is needed for a true transition to a circular economy. The unfortunate reality is that only approximately 10% of all waste is recycled, largely due to difficulties in sorting materials with extremely similar properties or determining the extent of the contamination. To address these issues, the European Union is exploring technology solutions based on smart packaging in a project called HolyGrail 2.0. A ‘digital watermark’, specifically a repeated digital pattern imperceptibly embedded in the regular design, will enable cameras to identify the product and recycling requirements. Unlike a bar code, the ‘digital watermark’ covers the entire object, so cannot be obscured or damaged. If mandated for all future packaging, a technology such as this would allow recyclers easily sort their waste without needing to rely entirely on the properties of waste materials. Consumer Engagement Over the last few years, the COVID-19 pandemic caused a global surge in the adoption of ID technologies, particularly QR codes. The adoption of QR codes into track & trace schemes quickly normalized QR code usage for consumers, triggering many brand owners to investigate smart packaging use cases. The result is an increased focus on ‘connected experience’, with brands interacting with consumers on landing sites accessed via smartphone scans of NFC antennas or QR codes. For the consumer, the benefit is in the rewards, such as discounts and freebies exclusive to the landing site. For the environmentally conscientious consumer, information on the sourcing of materials, production process, and carbon impact can also be valuable, accessible knowledge that may influence purchase decisions. For the brand, the connected experience is an excellent tool for collecting customer data and a useful tool in marketing campaigns. Digitalization of the resale markets is an emerging example of a connected experience. By facilitating an authentication process, smart packaging helps brand owners establish their own marketplaces and maintain control over brand equity after the initial point of sale. For example, eBay has launched the use of NFC authentication for the sneaker marketplace, and Adidas has created Infinite Play with Avery Dennison to establish a trade-in service on their mobile app. Further Insight Smart packaging has multiple use cases that can provide benefits across the value chain, from improved consumer interaction to facilitating the transition to a circular economy. To learn more about the opportunities, technological requirements and challenges of many smart packaging applications, IDTechEx’s recent report “Smart Packaging 2023-2033” comprehensively explores the topic via a wide range of application case studies and analysis of players, technologies and use cases. To find out more about this IDTechEx report, including downloadable sample pages, please visit www.IDTechEx.com/smart
How Sensors Are Used to Enable Smart Factories and More Efficient Manufacturing, Report IDTechEx
Author: Yulin Wang, Technology Analyst at IDTechEx With the high inflation, increasing labor costs, labor shortage, energy crisis, and hybrid working, the manufacturing industry experienced significant turmoil in 2022. Although some of these have started to get eased, 2023 is still expected to be a challenging year for the manufacturing industry. Forbes recently published an article, “The 5 Biggest Business Trends In 2023 Everyone Must Get Ready For Now”, listing a few key transitions in the manufacturing industry. One of the most interesting transitions in the manufacturing business is the trend toward digital transformation. Digital transformation, along with Industry 4.0, has been a buzzword for many years. However, despite the fancy name, digital transformation is often a vague concept for manufacturers. IDTechEx believes that digital manufacturing can be deconstructed into two main themes: safe human-robot interaction (HRI) to achieve higher productivity and an increased level of autonomous mobility for material and goods transportation. These themes are ultimately enabled by cutting-edge sensor technologies. Safe HRI to Achieve Higher Productivity Safety has always come as the overarching priority when it comes to using robots/machines in the manufacturing industry. Robots can pose a variety of hazards to workers. For example, while industrial robots are designed to operate at a safe distance from people, these devices traditionally lack the sensory skills required to identify adjacent humans. Recently, with the fast adoption of collaborative robots (cobots), human operators are directly exposed to the workspace of robots, which can lead to further collisions, risks, and dangers. In order to mitigate safety concerns, IDTechEx has seen multiple sensors, such as force and torque sensors, LiDAR, and tactile sensors being installed on robots to equip them with better environmental perception and collision avoidance capabilities. One of the critical applications of sensors in robots is proximity detection and collision detection. Proximity detection can be achieved using photoelectric sensors (photoelectric fences), LiDAR, and capacitive proximity sensors. Photoelectric sensors/light curtains can be an ideal solution for industry robots. A safety light curtain is made up of a transmitter and a receiver. The transmitter transmits modulated infrared light, which is received by the receiver to create an array of light beams (also known as a light curtain). When a human operator enters or is blocked by the protection net, the light receiver circuit replies through the internal control circuit, which outputs a signal to the machine, causing the machine to slow down or stop its operation, thereby preventing the occurrence of a potential collision. By contrast, force and torque sensors are commonly used for cobots when it comes to collision detection. Unlike industrial robots, cobots work in the same workspace as humans, meaning that a physical light curtain/fence would not suffice. IDTechEx noticed that the majority of commercialized cobots are equipped with at least one force/torque (F/T) sensor at their joints. F/T sensors have two main functions, including force measurement and collision detection. F/T sensors are typically installed around the robot’s end-effectors to measure the force. Depending on the tasks, the range of forces needs to be preset, and when the collision happens, the force or torque detected by the sensor will exceed the pre-determined range, thereby informing the robot to stop its operation. With the increasing safety requirement of HRI, more F/T sensors are expected to be installed. Most cobots have one F/T sensor installed at this stage, typically around the end-effector. However, IDTechEx has noticed that a few cobot OEMs (e.g., Franka Emika) are starting to incorporate more torque sensors on all the joints to enable better force control and collision detection. Increased Level of Autonomous Mobility Autonomous mobility is one of the most important parts of a robot’s autonomy. Autonomous mobility requires the robot to have the capabilities of navigating, localizing, and avoiding obstacles. In the context of the manufacturing industry, mobile robots, especially automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and autonomous mobile robots (AMRs), will be used for material transportation. The autonomous mobility function of mobile robots is enabled by sensors such as LiDAR, cameras, and ultrasonic sensors. Different sensors have benefits and drawbacks, and in reality, multiple sensors are usually used in combination with each other to achieve the best overall performance. For instance, LiDAR is relatively easy to use, and they are immune to poor weather. However, LiDAR usually comes with a high cost. By contrast, cameras or imaging sensors are the only ones that can be used for object classification/recognition, but they have poor performance when it comes to adverse weather or limited visibility. In terms of the manufacturing industry, IDTechEx believes that cameras will be increasingly adopted because those robots tend to work in a well-controlled indoor environment with stable illumination. At this stage, IDTechEx believes that many indoor AGVs in the manufacturing industry can perform on level 3 autonomy, meaning that the robotic onboard systems can achieve most of the autonomous driving tasks and multiple AGVs can be monitored simultaneously by one operator. With the trend toward level 4 and a higher level of autonomy, IDTechEx believes that more robust sensors will be incorporated. A detailed analysis of the market forecast can be found in IDTechEx’s latest research, “Sensors for Robotics 2023-2043: Technologies, Markets, and Forecasts”. To find out more about this IDTechEx report, including downloadable sample pages, please visit www.IDTechEx.com/rosensors
How the Additive Manufacturing Industry Emphasized End-Use Part Production at Rapid + TCT 2023
[Author: Sona Dadhania, Technology Analyst at IDTechEx] RAPID + TCT is one of North America’s biggest trade shows and conferences for the additive manufacturing (AM) industry. This year, IDTechEx attended and spoke at the show; they interviewed prominent players and observed industry trends. While RAPID + TCT 2022 saw major technology and materials releases across the board from large and small players alike, RAPID + TCT 2023 felt more constrained in comparison. Still, the announcements and releases that did occur at RAPID 2023 consistently focused on enabling medium-to-high volume part production for AM’s power users. As the industry courts the users with the most potential to invest further in additive technology, here are some of the new releases that aim to accomplish that goal. AM Hardware to Enable Higher Productivity For the companies releasing new printers at RAPID, they shared a common theme: higher productivity. These printers were designed to increase end-user print productivity, whether it be higher speed, more power, or larger build volumes. For metal printers, Eplus3D released their EP-M400 powder bed fusion machine, which includes four lasers to increase speed and productivity. DMG Mori showcased the LASERTEC 30 SLM US, an American-manufactured PBF machine that features adaptive beam control to improve quality and throughput. There were more prominent releases for polymer AM printers; Creality, Nexa3D, and Impossible Objects each showcased printers with improved speeds, with the last launching their CBAM 25 printer, a composite 3D printer utilizing sheet lamination that has print speeds 15 times that of comparable selective laser sintering machines per Impossible Objects. Others, like B9Creations, launched printers with bigger build volumes; B9’s new digital light processing (DLP) printer is their biggest yet. Outside of the printers themselves, companies like PostProcess Technologies and HP highlighted their automated equipment that aims to streamline the entire manufacturing line for higher volume production. IDTechEx finds that improvements at every single point of the supply chain (pre-printing, printing, post-processing, quality control, etc.) will be critical to encouraging users’ continued adoption of 3D printers, which IDTechEx predicts will reach US$10 billion in market value by 2033. Materials and Software for Higher Performing AM Parts Beyond hardware, materials and software are other critical elements to a successful AM ecosystem. Software had its moment at RAPID; with Stratasys releasing the GradCAD Pro suite of software with numerous upgrades targeted for power users, BASF launching their lattice engine powered by Hyperganic, and AMFG and Dyndrite collaborating on an integrated software package for laser PBF printers. As users look to optimize AM operations, software presents opportunities to make AM more accessible and streamlined for different end sectors. With IDTechEx predicting that AM materials alone will surpass US$31 billion in annual sales by 2033, that expected growth curve for AM materials will very much be fueled by the release and utilization of higher-performance materials that can go on to be used in more demanding applications, many examples of which were on display at RAPID. Numerous metal powders were launched or announced qualifications at RAPID, like Elementum3D’s aluminum 5000 series alloy, Mitsui’s chromium-copper alloy, and Uniformity Labs’ Inconel 625 alloy. High-performance photopolymer resins were also released, including Polyspectra’s new biocompatible COR Bio resin and a high-performance resin line developed by Nagase. Another interesting release was Jabil’s PLA (polylactic acid) powder that Natureworks developed. They are looking to bring the benefits of the most popular material in thermoplastic filament extrusion to the SLS market, an area dominated by nylon powders, per IDTechEx research. Advancing the AM Ecosystem to Push the AM Industry Forward IDTechEx’s interviews and discussions at RAPID + TCT 2023 made it clear that improvements were needed within the entire AM ecosystem to encourage more productive use of AM technology. Pushing towards these productive applications, where AM may be used as end-use parts, is not easy to accomplish, given the inherent limitations of many AM technologies and materials. But in the long-term, end-users will be more likely to invest in AM when they can see how its benefits will directly impact and improve their operations. An optimized AM ecosystem will be critical to convincing more end-users of AM’s value-add. Market Forecasts for Additive Manufacturing IDTechEx's “3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing 2023-2033: Technology and Market Outlook” report carefully segments the market by eighty different forecast lines across seventeen different technology categories, four major material categories, and eight material subcategories. These hardware and material forecasts analyze future installations, hardware unit sales, hardware revenue, materials mass demand, and material revenue. IDTechEx provides comprehensive technology benchmarking studies, examination and case studies of critical application areas, detailed discussion of auxiliary AM industry fields, and in-depth market and economic analysis. Finally, IDTechEx carefully dissects the positive and negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent supply chain disruptions on the 3D printing market. For further information on this market, including 125 interview-based profiles of market leaders and start-ups, technology comparison studies, business model analysis, and granular 10-year market forecasts, see the market report at “3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing 2023-2033: Technology and Market Outlook”. For more detailed information on the polymer and metal additive manufacturing industries, please see the IDTechEx reports, “Polymer Additive Manufacturing 2023-2033: Technology and Market Outlook” and “Metal Additive Manufacturing 2022-2032: Technology and Market Outlook”. For the full portfolio of 3D Printing research available from IDTechEx, please visit www.IDTechEx.com/Research/3D. Sample pages are available for all IDTechEx reports.