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Sandvik Coromant Upgrades CoroPlus ToolPath For PrimeTurning Software

Sandvik Coromant Upgrades CoroPlus ToolPath For PrimeTurning Software

Cutting tool and tooling system specialist Sandvik Coromant has upgraded the CoroPlus ToolPath for PrimeTurning software to help manufacturers speed up their operations and planning processes. Part of the Sandvik Coromant digitally connected CoroPlus suite of solutions for machine shops, the software facilitates maximum turning productivity and output.

Introduced by Sandvik Coromant through the unique PrimeTurning concept, the all directional turning methodology enabled increased metal removal rates, offered significant time savings and boosted productivity while eliminating many of the misconceptions associated with small entering angles and chip control. The concept proved especially beneficial in mass production industries such as the automotive sector. It was also ideal for short batch production—for example in aerospace and oil and gas—of components in difficult-to-machine materials that require frequent set-up and tool changes.

To get the best out of the process, including more efficient and faster programming, the company launched its CoroPlus ToolPath for PrimeTurning software, which has now been enhanced with a host of new features, functions and an easy-to-use interface. Available in stand-alone and CAM-integrated versions, the software provides the correct grade, geometry selection, and cutting data while ensuring optimal productivity and tool life as well as maximum output. It is also compatible with a wide range of CNC turning machines that use ISO codes, thereby providing automatic storage for component profiles.

The CoroPlus ToolPath for PrimeTurning now supports profiling and facing for external turning in addition to existing programmable support for longitudinal turning. The software also enables CAD models to be imported (in STEP and IGES formats, amongst others) and offers 3D simulation with collision detection.

A key new feature is an improved and intuitive interface for machinists who don’t have CAM software with PrimeTurning support or those doing shopfloor programming, with the option of operating on desktops or mobile devices. The user is able to generate NC code in few quick and easy steps. After the user specifies the operation, machine parameters, workpiece details and material information, the software automatically recommends the right tools to use along with the cutting data. The operator can simply use the suggested solution or alter parameters to get customised results.

Before creating the final NC code, the PrimeTurning tool path software enables the user to run a simulation to verify no collisions and change any parameters as required, then generate a new programme within seconds and run another simulation until the user is satisfied enough to produce the correct code. The software enables the user to stop anywhere they like in the process, running a simulation block by block or going back into the code if preferred.



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Machine Vision Now Even Faster And Robust With MVTec HALCON 19.05

Machine Vision Now Even Faster And Robust With MVTec HALCON 19.05

MVTec Software GmbH, the leading provider of modern machine vision software, announces that May 31, 2019 will be the release date of the new version 19.05 of its standard software, HALCON. This release will further improve machine vision processes with a number of new and revised features. In particular, the expert team at MVTec has enhanced the deep learning technologies available in HALCON. One highlight: In version 19.05, the deep learning inference can also be executed on CPUs with the established Arm processor architecture. This allows customers to use the latest deep learning technologies on standard embedded devices. Deep-learning-based object detection has also been improved: The method, which locates and identifies objects by their surrounding rectangles (so-called bounding boxes) now precisely detects the orientation of the objects.

Significant Improvements In Matching And Code Reading

Other new features in HALCON 19.05 optimise matching processes. For example, users of HALCON’s shape-based matching can now define areas within a search model that should *not* contain any contours. In the context of repetitive structures, this leads to more robust matching results.

Moreover, the new HALCON release also offers several enhancements for surface-based 3D matching. This means that additional parameters can be used to better inspect the quality of 3D edges, resulting in even more robust matching – especially in the case of noisy 3D data.

Optimised Usability In Embedded Environments

“With version 19.05, we are raising our proven HALCON standard machine vision software to a new level. Developers and users alike benefit from numerous new features. These not only include additional, well-thought-out deep learning functions, but also noticeably improved usability in embedded environments,” explained Johannes Hiltner, HALCON Product Manager at MVTec.



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MVTec Launches MERLIC 4

MVTec Launches MERLIC 4

MVTec Software GmbH will issue its new MERLIC 4 software release on February 15. It contains many new and improved features that make the creation of machine vision applications even easier, more efficient, and more user-friendly. The range of functions has also been streamlined with regard to obsolete technologies and thereby optimised for users developing real world solutions.

One highlight of the new version is the parallel processing and execution of different tools. This simplifies the implementation of multi-camera setups and allows for a more efficient use of the system’s computing power. Different machine vision tasks can now be performed in one single instance.

The software also offers 3D vision tools based on height images which, for example, enable users to read embossed text and perform other 3D machine vision tasks. For this, four new tools are included that make it possible to prepare images from 3D sensors or 3D cameras so that inspections can be subsequently carried out using MERLIC’s existing 2D tools.

Greatly Improved Process Integration And Usability

Moreover, MERLIC 4 provides optimised process integration via Hilscher cifX cards of all current form factors. The software can thus communicate with common field-bus and real-time Ethernet industrial protocols, such as PROFINET, EtherCAT, and many others, via Hilscher PC cards. This makes it possible to seamlessly integrate machine vision systems running MERLIC with a programmable logic controller (PLC).

Besides, MERLIC now supports “recipes” which allow for the rapid reconfiguration of different machine vision tasks.

Thanks to a completely redesigned tool flow with an even more intuitive user interface, users can easily arrange and handle tools and elements with the aid of parallel strands and buttons. A “branch trigger” also allows branches between the strands (Branch on Condition) to be displayed more transparently.

In addition, MERLIC 4 allows customised translations of standard texts in the frontend for all languages.

Meeting The Customer’s Exact Requirements

Regarding the MERLIC 4, Sonja Schick, Product Manager MERLIC at MVTec. has stated that, “In MERLIC 4, we provide many new features that will be extremely beneficial to machine vision users, including parallel tool execution, improved process integration, and 3D vision with height images. In this way, we meet a wide range of specific customer requirements that are in greater demand than ever before, not just today but also in the future.” Dr. Olaf Munkelt, MVTec Managing Director, has also added that, “The user-friendliness and usability of machine vision software remains a significant concern in the industry. This is also due to a shortage of skilled labor and the inherently greater flexibility of processes in the Industrial Internet of Things. And this is exactly what we’re aiming for with MERLIC 4.”


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Hypertherm Adds New Features To Rotary Tube Pro Software With Version Update

Hypertherm Adds New Features To Rotary Tube Pro Software With Version Update

Hypertherm has announced a minor version update of the Rotary Tube Pro software that makes it easier to design and cut tube and pipe parts with no 3D CAD experience required.

The new minor version update includes a number of new features designed to speed the programming process. For example, automatic nesting is now standard, allowing software users to nest multiple quantities of the same part or different parts on stock tube. Users can add parts to the part list and build a stock list for nesting, maintain the seam orientation during nesting, add part spacing, and choose how the software selects stock.

Other new features include the ability to store multiple parts and nests, plus an advanced edit feature that allows uses to manually adjust preferences like the lead size and position, along with cut sequence. The software also includes features that allow users to pin commonly used lead styles to the top of the list for quick access and offers more powerful reports to better track nests and stock usage.

“Instead of moving tube and undertaking multiple steps—measuring, sawing, drilling, etc.—Rotary Tube Pro really streamlines the production process,” explained Tom Stillwell, a project manager for Hypertherm’s CAD/CAM software team. “And though it is already easy to use, the enhancements introduced with this minor update of Rotary Tube Pro make the process of programming and completing jobs even easier than before, giving fabricators and manufacturers the ability to work more efficiently, boost productivity, and reduce operating costs even further.”


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Vero Software, FASys And SPRING Technologies To Unite Under Hexagon Brand

Vero Software, FASys and SPRING Technologies To Unite Under Hexagon Brand

Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division has announced the formation of its Production Software business, comprising Vero Software, FASys and SPRING Technologies. The move, which sees the three acquisitions adopting Hexagon’s corporate identity, reflects Hexagon’s broadening expertise in the production technology space.

Hexagon acquired Vero Software, a specialist in CAD and CAM software, in 2014 and has continued to expand and diversify its offering. The 2017 acquisition of FASys brought tooling and resource management software and shop-floor automation and integration expertise into the portfolio. SPRING Technologies, acquired in 2018, provides CNC simulation technology for G-code verification and workflow optimisation. Combining components of this rich portfolio of technology, Hexagon has already utilised this expertise to develop solutions for reverse engineering and on-machine measurement.

“Over the last five years our available technology and solutions have evolved considerably from the CAD CAM heritage of Vero,” explained Steve Sivitter, CEO of the Production Software business. “We’re increasingly focused on developing product synergies that will help customers improve quality and productivity. Our technology experts from Vero, FASys and SPRING have been working very closely together for some time, so operating together as a single entity is a natural step for us. We’re all excited at the prospect of what’s possible now creating innovative manufacturing intelligence solutions in the production software space.”

Norbert Hanke, President of Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, added that: “The formation of the Production Software business complements our design and engineering and metrology businesses, enabling us to build unique solutions for our customers in manufacturing. As we develop this approach further, our experience of leveraging data from all phases of the manufacturing process will help create the Autonomous Connected Ecosystems (ACE) that will enable Smart Factories.”


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Marposs: Provaset T3

Marposs: Provaset T3

Marposs’ Provaset T3 is the ideal leak tester for all industrial production sectors and quality labs.

A dedicated software to collect and manage data can be provided together with the equipment.

It possesses a full colour 7” LCD display touchscreen, more than 300 test programmes and test sequences and enables the user to control external automations. The system also contains an interface with barcode and QRcode readers and printers and the possibility to record the tests on USB memories or via Ethernet. This makes it a complete and suitable instrument for the most modern production applications.

Wide full scale versions are available in the following parameters: up to 30 bar; 300 l/min; vacuum and high measurement resolution: up to 0.1 Pa; 0.01 cm3/min.

Existing applications in the mechanic field include: axels, cylinders, flanges, gears, motor reducers, pumps etc.


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Worldwide Spending On Robotics And Drones To Reach USD115.7 Billion In 2019

Worldwide Spending On Robotics And Drones To Reach USD115.7 Billion In 2019

A new update to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiannual Robotics and Drones Spending Guide forecasts that worldwide spending on robotics systems and drones will total USD115.7 billion in 2019, an increase of 17.6 percent compared to 2018. By 2022, IDC expects this spending will reach USD 210.3 billion with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.2 percent.

Robotics systems will be the larger of the two categories throughout the five-year forecast period with worldwide robotics spending forecast to be USD 103.4 billion in 2019. Investments in drones will total USD 12.3 billion in 2019 but are forecast to grow at a faster rate (30.6 percent CAGR) than robotics systems (18.9 percent CAGR).

Robotics spending in 2019 will be dominated by hardware purchases, with nearly two thirds of all spending going toward robotic systems, after-market robotics hardware, and system hardware. Purchases of industrial robots and service robots will deliver nearly 30 percent of the category total in 2019. Robotics-related software spending will largely go toward purchases of command and control applications and robotics-specific applications. Services spending will be spread across several segments, including systems integration, application management, and hardware deployment and support. Software spending is forecast to grow at a slightly faster rate (21.7 percent CAGR) than services or hardware spending (19.0 percent CAGR and 18.2 percent CAGR respectively).

Discrete manufacturing will be responsible for nearly half of all robotics systems spending worldwide in 2019, generating USD 50.2 billion in revenues. The next largest industries for robotics systems will be process manufacturing, resource industries, healthcare, and consumers. The industries that will see the fastest growth in robotics spending over the 2017-2022 forecast are wholesale (31.4 percent CAGR), retail (29.6 percent CAGR), and construction (28.1 percent CAGR). By 2022, IDC expects retail will overtake consumer spending on robotics systems.

“Industrial robotics continues to top the technology investment priorities of manufacturing organisations across all major markets surveyed by IDC in 2018,” said Dr. Jing Bing Zhang, Research Director, Worldwide Robotics. “While the looming trade war between the United States and China is likely to dampen the market growth slightly in the near term, we expect the growth trend to pick up from 2020 onward.”

“The worldwide market for commercial service robotics will continue to grow at a rate of 20% per year for the coming five years,” said John Santagate, Research Director for Commercial Service Robotics at IDC. “This growth is due to continued innovation in ease of use as well as the drive for flexible automation across industries. We expect to see growth driven by increased adoption of autonomous mobile robots and collaborative robots being deployed as a means to deliver improvements in capacity, productivity, and efficiency.”

Spending on drones will also be dominated by hardware purchases with roughly 90 percent of the category total going toward drones and after-market drone hardware. Consumer drones will account for roughly 40 percent of the category total in 2019 with service drones delivering another 18 percent. Similar to robotics systems, drone software spending will primarily go to command and control applications and drone-specific applications. Services spending will be led by education and training and will see the fastest growth (35.9 percent CAGR) over the five-year forecast, followed by software (33.9 percent CAGR) and hardware (301 percent CAGR).

Consumer spending on drones will total USD 5.1 billion in 2019, accounting for a little over 40 percent of the worldwide total. Industry spending on drones in 2019 will be led by utilities (USD 1.4 billion), construction (USD 1.05 billion) and discrete manufacturing (USD 913 million). The industries that will experience the fastest growth in drone spending over the five-year forecast period will be federal/central government (56.0 percent CAGR), education (51.0 percent CAGR), and retail (42.01 percent CAGR). By 2022, IDC expects the resource industry to move ahead of both construction and discrete manufacturing to become the second largest industry for drone spending.

“The market is working to simplify the use and integration of drones with efforts ranging from enabling new drone applications through improved technological capabilities to understanding the regulatory implications of drones and the viability of these applications. Drones are developing new skills, coupling 3D mapping and fully autonomous navigation capabilities with rapid improvements in battery performance and air-traffic management systems. Drone adopters continue to search for a safe, cost-efficient, and repeatable drone solution that can be easily implemented in a variety of situations and use cases,” said Stacey Soohoo, Research Manager, Customer Insights & Analysis at IDC.


Worldwide Spending On Robotics And Drones To Reach USD115.7 Billion In 2019

On a geographic basis, China will be the largest region for drones and robotics systems with overall spending of $38.5 billion in 2019. Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan and China) (APeJC) will be the second largest region with $23.3 billion in spending, followed by the United States ($17.2 billion) and Western Europe ($13.0 billion). China will also be the leading region for robotics systems with $36.1 billion in spending this year. The United States will be the largest region for drones in 2019 at $4.8 billion. China will deliver the fastest spending growth in both categories with a five-year CAGR of 24.6% for robotics systems and 63.5% for drones.

The Worldwide Semiannual Robotics and Drones Spending Guide quantifies the robotics and drone opportunities from a region, industry, use case, and technology perspective. Spending data is available for more than 60 use cases across 20 industries in nine regions. Data is also available for 18 robotics systems technologies and 16 drone systems technologies. Unlike any other research in the industry, the detailed segmentation and timely, global data is designed to help suppliers targeting the market to identify market opportunities and execute an effective strategy.



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ABB Wins $18 Million Transformer Order From Indian Railways

ABB Wins $18 Million Transformer Order From Indian Railways

ABB has won an order of about $18 million from Indian Railways to supply traction transformers. These transformers are customised for the WAP-7 type electric locomotive, which is a 6000 horsepower strong locomotive capable of hauling 24 coaches at speeds of up to 140 kilometers per hour.

The project is part of the ‘Mission Electrification’ initiative of Indian Railways, which aims to convert an additional 24,000 kilometers of railways from fossil fuels to electrification. The mission also aims to enhance energy efficiency by adopting high quality equipment and facilitating the increased adoption of renewable energy in railway operations.

“We are proud to extend our long-standing relationship with the Indian Railways and contribute to the electrification of the country’s rail network. These transformers have been specially designed to deliver the highest levels of performance and efficiency,” said Laurent Favre, head of ABB’s transformers business, a part of the company’s Power Grids division.

The transformers will be manufactured at ABB’s Vadodara facility in Gujarat.

ABB transformers power about half the world’s electrical locomotives and train sets, and most train manufacturers and rail operators rely on them. ABB’s traction transformers are compact, lightweight and extremely reliable. In addition to traction power solutions, ABB provides a diverse power portfolio for rail and urban transport solutions including static frequency converter stations, power quality systems, ABB Ability network management systems, energy recuperation and energy storage systems, system studies and dynamic traction power supply simulations based on powerful software tools.


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Gartner Forecasts Seven Future Digital Disruptions

Gartner Forecasts Seven Future Digital Disruptions

Gartner, Inc. has revealed seven digital disruptions that organisations may not be prepared for and which CIOs may not foresee coming. These include several categories of disruption, each of which represents a significant potential for new disruptive companies and business models to emerge.

“The single largest challenge facing enterprises and technology providers today is digital disruption,” said Daryl Plummer, Vice President and Gartner Fellow. “The virtual nature of digital disruptions makes them much more difficult to deal with than past technology-triggered disruptions. CIOs must work with their business peers to pre-empt digital disruption by becoming experts at recognising, prioritising and responding to early indicators.”

Quantum Computing

Quantum computing (QC) is a type of nonclassical computing that is based on the quantum state of subatomic particles. Classic computers operate using binary bits where the bit is either 0 or 1, true or false, positive or negative. However, in QC, the bit is referred to as a quantum bit or qubit. Unlike the strictly binary bits of classic computing, qubits can represent 1 or 0 or a superposition of both partly 0 and partly 1 at the same time.

Superposition is what gives quantum computers speed and parallelism, meaning that these computers could theoretically work on millions of computations at once. Further, qubits can be linked with other qubits in a process called entanglement. When combined with superposition, quantum computers could process a massive number of possible outcomes at the same time.

“Today’s data scientists, focused on machine learning (ML), artificial intelligence (AI) and data and analytics, simply cannot address some difficult and complex problems because of the compute limitations of classic computer architectures. Some of these problems could take today’s fastest supercomputers months or even years to run through a series of permutations, making it impractical to attempt,” said Mr. Plummer. “Quantum computers have the potential to run massive amounts of calculations in parallel in seconds. This potential for compute acceleration, as well as the ability to address difficult and complex problems, is what is driving so much interest from CEOs and CIOs in a variety of industries. But we must always be conscious of the hype surrounding the quantum computing model. QC is good for a specific set of problem solutions, not all general-purpose computing.”

Real-Time Language Translation

Real-time language translation could, in effect, fundamentally change communication across the globe. Devices such as translation earbuds and voice and text translation services can perform translation in real-time, breaking down language barriers with friends, family, clients and colleagues. This technology could not only disrupt intercultural language barriers, but also language translators as this role may no longer be needed.

“To prepare for this disruption, CIOs should equip employees in international jobs with experimental real-time translators to pilot streamlined communication,” said Mr. Plummer. “This will help establish multilingual disciplines to help employees work more effectively across languages.”


Nanotechnology is science, engineering and technology conducted at the nanoscale — 1 to 100 nanometers. The implications of this technology is that the creation of solutions involve individual atoms and molecules. Nanotech is used to create new effects in materials science, such as self-healing materials. Applications in medicine, electronics, security and manufacturing herald a world of small solutions that fill in the gaps in the macroverse in which we live.

“Nanotechnology is rapidly becoming as common a concept as many others, and yet still remains sparsely understood in its impact to the world at large,” said Mr. Plummer. “When we consider applications that begin to allow things like 3D printing at nanoscale, then it becomes possible to advance the cause of printed organic materials and even human tissue that is generated from individual stem cells. 3D bioprinting has shown promise and nanotech is helping deliver on it.”

Swarm Intelligence

Digital business will stretch conventional management methods past the breaking point. The enterprise will need to make decisions in real time about unpredictable events, based on information from many different sources (such as Internet of Things [IoT] devices) beyond the organization’s control. Humans move too slowly, stand-alone smart machines cost too much, and hyperscale architectures cannot deal with the variability. Swarm intelligence could tackle the mission at a low cost.

Swarm intelligence is the collective behavior of decentralised, self-organised systems, natural or artificial. A swarm consists of small computing elements (either physical entities or software agents) that follow simple rules for coordinating their activities. Such elements can be replicated quickly and inexpensively. Thus, a swarm can be scaled up and down easily as needs change. CIOs should start exploring the concept to scale management, especially in digital business scenarios.

Human-Machine Interfaces

Human-machine interface (HMI) offers solutions providers the opportunity to differentiate with innovative, multimodal experiences. In addition, people living with disabilities benefit from HMIs that are being adapted to their needs, including some already in use within organizations of all types. Technology will give some of these people “superabilities,” spurring people without disabilities to also employ the technology to keep up.

For example, electromyography (EMG) wearables allow current users who would be unable to do so otherwise to use smartphones and computers through the use of sensors that measure muscle activity. Muscular contraction generates electrical signals that can be measured from the skin surface. Sensors may be placed on a single part or multiple parts of the body, as appropriate to the individual. The gestures are in turn interpreted by a HMI linked to another device, such as a PC or smartphone. Wearable devices using myoelectric signals have already hit the consumer market and will continue migrating to devices intended for people with disabilities.

Software Distribution Revolution

Software procurement and acquisition is undergoing a fundamental shift. The way in which software is located, bought and updated is now in the province of the software distribution marketplace. With the continued growth of cloud platforms from Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft, Google, IBM and others, as well as the ever-increasing introduction of cloud-oriented products and services, the role of marketplaces for selling and buying is gathering steam. The cloud platform providers realise (to varying degrees) that they must remove as much friction as possible in the buying and owning processes for both their own offerings and the offerings of their independent software vendors (ISVs) (i.e., partners). ISVs or cloud technology service providers (TSPs) recognise the need to reach large and increasingly diverse buying audiences.

“Establishing one’s own marketplace or participating as a provider in a third-party marketplace is a route to market that is becoming increasingly popular. Distributors and other third parties also see the opportunity to create strong ecosystems (and customer bases) while driving efficiencies for partners and technology service providers,” said Mr. Plummer.

Smartphone Disintermediation

The use of other devices, such as virtual personal assistants (VPAs), smartwatches and other wearables, may mean a shift in how people continue to use the smartphone.

“Smartphones are, today, critical for connections and media consumption. However, over time they will become less visible as they stay in pockets and backpacks. Instead, consumers will use a combination of voice-input and VPA technologies and other wearable devices to navigate a store or public space such as an airport or stadium without walking down the street with their eyes glued to a smartphone screen,” said Mr. Plummer.

CIOs and IT leaders should use wearability of a technology as a guiding principle and investigate and pilot wearable solutions to improve worker effectiveness, increase safety, enhance customer experiences and improve employee satisfaction.


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EuroBLECH 2018: Bystronic Displays “World Class Manufacturing” Innovations

EuroBLECH 2018: Bystronic Displays “World Class Manufacturing” Innovations

In time for EuroBLECH 2018, Bystronic is systematically driving forward the vision of “World Class Manufacturing”. This is based on a comprehensive range of new products and services with which Bystronic is gearing its users’ process landscape towards networked production. “We accompany our customers step by step on the path to the smart factory,” explained Bystronic CEO Alex Waser.

With “World Class Manufacturing”, Bystronic has described the matching supporting programme as one that features innovative solutions that go far beyond the conventional idea of a machine tool. It’s about fusing the individual processes relating to laser cutting and bending into a network of intelligent components, said Mr. Waser. Users can thus achieve a higher degree of flexibility and transparency in their production environment. Both are important prerequisites in order to manufacture products faster, more cost-effectively, and more intelligently than ever before.

In future, thanks to new software solutions, users will be able to create quotes more rapidly, plan their production processes in an efficient manner, and make the best possible use of their resources. Live monitoring systems represent an additional building block. They provide users with real-time information about the running processing steps from their production environment. All this will result in the optimisation of costs and processes. And this in turn, is the prerequisite for growth and sustainable competitive success.

With flexible system solutions, Bystronic is expanding the rules of the game in the field of sheet metal processing. Until now, there was always a trade-off between fast and versatile. In future, users will be able to produce small series or individual mass-produced products at conditions similar to a standardised high-volume series.  As commented by Mr. Waser, “With the new generation of our cutting and bending systems, users can adapt their processes much more easily and thus respond more quickly to their customers’ requirements.”

The integrated automation of production steps is another key success factor. To achieve this, Bystronic uses modular solutions for the material handling in the field of laser cutting. Automation systems that grow with the customers’ requirements and with increasing laser output. In the field of bending, the company is driving forward the development of flexible automation modules that enable fast transitions between automated and manual manufacturing.

Service remains another key issue for Bystronic. Within the networked production environment, network steps are interdependent. This makes process reliability and the preventive maintenance of all integrated systems more critical than ever before. New service solutions help users increase the efficiency and process quality of their production.

Learn more by visiting Bystronic at EuroBLECH 2018 from October 23 to 26, 2018 in Hanover, Germany. Hall 12, Booth B66.


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