Epoxy-based composite molds are frequently used for polymer and wax materials injection. Three kinds of epoxy-based composite mold inserts fabrication methods are proposed in this work. A simple and cost-effective method for fabricating epoxy-based composite mold inserts of propeller using rapid prototyping and rapid tooling technique is demonstrated. The advantages of this method include high successful rate of mold fabrication, low-cost, and good surface roughness of the mold inserts. This method can be employed in the intermediate tooling to produce a small quantity of working samples by plastic injection molding at the first development stage for a new product. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Layered manufacturing technologies have been used to produce complex parts of diversified materials through different physical/chemical manufacturing principles. Nevertheless only a few materials are commercially available to build parts suitable for engineering applications. In this paper, the powder fusion of H13 tool steel is investigated. A high power Nd:YAG pulsed laser source on a CNC machine was used to fuse the powder, layer by layer, building solid cubes for further analysis. Four different laser vector scanning strategies were evaluated by comparing the results of porosity and layer distortion. The complexity of the laser/powder interaction shows that a complex strategy must be used to avoid porosity and distortion. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Munguía, Javier, Lloveras, Joaquim, Llorens, Sonia, and Laoui, Tahar
International Journal of Production Research. Apr2010, Vol. 48 Issue 8, p2261-2278. 18p. 2 Color Photographs, 9 Diagrams, 4 Charts, 2 Graphs.
Manufacturing processes, Artificial intelligence, Manufactures, Rapid prototyping, Trade routes, Relational databases, New product development, Decision making, Time management, Cost control, and Cost analysis
The purpose of this paper is to assess the possibility of using Rapid Manufacturing (RM) as a final manufacturing route through a comparison of RM capabilities vs. conventional manufacturing routes. This is done by means of a computer-aided system intended to guide the designer in the selection of optimum production parameters according to general product requirements proper of the first design stages. The proposed system makes use of a number of artificial intelligence (AI) tools, namely: fuzzy inference, relational databases and rule-based decision making to reach an optimum solution. A pilot application developed in Matlab® is presented to illustrate the system application on a real mechanical part used as a case study. In the article it is shown how the proposed model may be useful for presenting feasible RM alternatives for parts and products not originally intended for additive manufacture. It also indicates when no RM alternatives are suitable for the given tasks, thus indicating those areas of knowledge which are necessary to expand in order to have at disposal comprehensive and reliable info on RM to compete with conventional processes. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
International Journal of Production Research. 8/15/2006, Vol. 44 Issue 16, p3325-3343. 19p. 1 Chart.
Prototypes, Manufacturing processes, Product design, Industrial design, Manufactures, Technology, and Case studies
Current research by the developers of rapid prototyping systems is generally focused on improvements in cost, speed and materials to create truly economic and practical economic rapid manufacturing (RM) machines. In addition to being potentially smarter/faster/cheaper replacements for existing manufacturing technologies, the next generation of these machines will provide opportunities not only for the design and fabrication of products without traditional constraints but also for organizing manufacturing activities in new, innovative and previously undreamt of ways. This paper outlines a novel devolved manufacturing (DM) ‘factory-less’ approach to e-manufacturing, which integrates mass customization (MC) concepts, RM technologies and the communication opportunities of the Internet/World Wide Web, describes two case studies of different DM implementations and discusses the limitations and appropriateness of each, and, finally, draws some conclusions about the technical, manufacturing and business challenges involved. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
The paper presents work on the development of a build-time estimator for rapid manufacturing. A time estimator is required to develop a comprehensive costing tool for rapid manufacturing. An empirical method was used to estimate build times using both simulated and actual builds for a laser sintering machine. The estimator presented herein is based upon object geometry and, therefore, the fundamental data driving the model are obtainable from current three-dimensional computer-aided design models. The aim is to define a model describing the build times for a laser sintering machine either for single or multiple objects. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Studia Commercialia Bratislavensia. Dec2013, Vol. 6 Issue 24, p536-552. 17p.
Business models, Supply chains, Supply & demand, Manufacturing processes, and Industrial arts
The use of the Rapid Manufacturing (RM) technologies to manufacture end used product has become a more viable proposition these days than it was in the past. However, the characteristics of the technology allow for unconventional usage and subsequent supply chain support requirements. Therefore, it can be argued that the RM supply chain concepts have the potential room for further evolution. This research focuses on the possibility and structure of a business model tailored for the unconventional RM supply chain requirements. In this regard, the paper proposes the Virtual Trading System or VTS, which is an e-business platform that could potentially provide an alternative to the RM industry, in terms of supply chain functionality. The research outlines the structure of such a business model in detail, based on the requirements of the RM industry. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Palčič, I., Balažic, M., Milfelner, M., and Buchmeister, B.
Materials & Manufacturing Processes. Jul2009, Vol. 24 Issue 7/8, p750-753. 4p. 5 Black and White Photographs, 1 Graph.
Technological innovations, Manufactures, Computer-aided design, High technology industries, and Metals
This article has a twofold purpose. The first part deals with introduction of innovative high technology laser engineered net shaping (LENS) that offers a breakthrough in manufacturing, maintaining, and repairing products. It also presents many possibilities for the use of LENS technology, especially in the tool-making industry and for medical purposes. The second part presents a comparison of a product manufactured by conventional technologies and the same product manufactured by LENS technology. The product is a titanium alloy medical implant. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Supply chains, Energy consumption, Cost estimates, Industrial costs, Manufacturing industries, and Sustainability
The supply chains found in modern manufacturing are often complex and long. The resulting opacity poses a significant barrier to the measurement and minimization of energy consumption and therefore to the implementation of sustainable manufacturing. The current article investigates whether the adoption of additive manufacturing (AM) technology can be used to reach transparency in terms of energy and financial inputs to manufacturing operations. AM refers to the use of a group of electricity-driven technologies capable of combining materials to manufacture geometrically complex products in a single digitally controlled process step, entirely without molds, dies, or other tooling. The single-step nature affords full measurability with respect to process energy inputs and production costs. However, the parallel character of AM (allowing the contemporaneous production of multiple parts) poses previously unconsidered problems in the estimation of manufacturing resource consumption. This research discusses the implementation of a tool for the estimation of process energy flows and costs occurring in the AM technology variant direct metal laser sintering. It is demonstrated that accurate predictions can be made for the production of a basket of sample parts. Further, it is shown that, unlike conventional processes, the quantity and variety of parts demanded and the resulting ability to fully utilize the available machine capacity have an impact on process efficiency. It is also demonstrated that cost minimization in additive manufacturing may lead to the minimization of process energy consumption, thereby motivating sustainability improvements. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]