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SC Auto Launches Itself As Asia’s First And Only OEM For Integral Buses

SC Auto Launches Itself As Asia’s First And Only OEM For Integral Buses

SC Auto has launched Asia’s first integral coach named “SC Neustar”, a new generation of buses that delivers a complete transport solution that sets regional benchmarks in terms of higher performance, greater efficiency, and better economy.

The company also strengthened its position as a market leader in the bus manufacturing industry in Asia by transforming its business model from a quality bus body builder to an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM). This a significant step towards achieving the company’s ambitions to build on its capability to design, manufacture, and assemble its own products from start to finish.

S$60 million Investment In SC Auto’s Transformation Journey

Throughout the company’s transformation journey since 2014, SC Auto has invested a total of S$60 million to test and develop innovative automotive technology to build next-generation integral buses and expand on its factory footprint in Singapore and Myanmar, as well as to introduce automation processes to scale-up its overall production capacity.

Mr Tan Siow Chua, Chairman of SC Auto said: “Innovation and passion are at the heart of SC Auto’s ambition to become a global leader in the bus and coach industry. With SC Neustar’s launch, we are set to reach our growth target of S$100 million in annual revenue in four years. As Asia’s first and only integral bus OEM, the launch of SC Neustar demonstrates our unwavering commitment to pioneering new automotive technologies, underpinned by years of experience architecting and manufacturing high quality transportation solutions, and investment in R&D.”

The All-New SC Neustar

Delivering on SC Auto’s brand promise to offer global standards and local support, the SC Neustar is designed with SC Auto’s proprietary Euro 6 chassis technology that has been developed through its R&D capabilities and signature bus bodies. The bus has undergone extensive homologation testing in Europe and is fully certified based on the Euro 6 emission standard, a set of stringent standards adopted by European automotive makers to ensure buses meet exhaust and noise emissions standards to reduce the carbon footprint of vehicles globally.

Fully manufactured and assembled in Singapore, the SC Neustar has an impressive lifespan of up to 20 years, offering better economy through higher uptime and an extended operating life. High performance is assured by the combination of the bus’s unique monocoque chassis construction and specially manufactured drivetrain for higher fuel efficiency, drivability, and passenger comfort.

Lastly, the SC Neustar’s lightweight design and build using ferritic stainless steel superstructures offer better fuel savings and a lower cost of operation compared to conventional designs.

Expanded Factory Footprint To Meet Growing Demand For Manufacturing Integral Buses In Asia

In anticipation of the strong demand for the SC Neustar, SC Auto has doubled the area of its Singapore factory from 100,000 square feet to 200,000 square feet, to provide the additional capacity required for significant business growth over the longer term.

With time to market becoming a major differentiator, the newly expanded factory in Singapore, and SC Auto’s factory located in Yangon which will commence operation early next year, are equipped with state-of-the-art automated systems. These include automatic welding robots, 4.5 axis CNC precision machines, and automatic wire harness manufacturing, yielding improved workflow productivity of up to 40 percent. The new facility is expected to increase SC Auto’s overall production by five times.

Strong Support From Enterprise Singapore

With strong support from Enterprise Singapore and leveraging the government agency’s extensive business networks, SC Auto is well positioned to advance its internationalisation strategy to scale up its business overseas.

Mr Ho Chi Bao, Director for Precision Engineering, Marine and Offshore, and Engineering Services, Enterprise Singapore, said: “SC Auto has constantly challenged itself to adapt to the changing environment. Its transformation from a bus body builder into an Original Equipment Manufacturer and adopting highly automated manufacturing solutions are commendable efforts by a home-grown Singapore company. This sets a good example for the industry and we hope to see more companies innovate and explore new areas to drive their business growth.”


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Delta To Implement CODESYS System Globally Through New Industry Partnership

Delta To Implement CODESYS System Globally Through New Industry Partnership

Taiwanese manufacturer, Delta, has begun a new partnership with 3S-Smart Software Solution GmbH, which is a member of the CODESYS Group. The aforementioned partnership, in which Delta plans to make its future motion control devices programmable with CODESYS, will offer customers across EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa) and Asia the opportunity to simplify the implementation of Delta’s industrial automation hardware in their operations.

Andy Liu, General Manager of Delta’s Industrial Automation Business Group (IABG), said, “Our customers asked for CODESYS, and we’re delighted to give it to them. In Europe, many of the top automation players use this software platform because it is outstanding technology. Now, customers across EMEA can have CODESYS in all new Delta motion systems. In addition, we can now also make CODESYS available to the large Delta customer base in Asia. We also hope this partnership will ultimately open new doors to the Asian market for European industrial equipment makers.”

With 69 R&D facilities around the world and dedicated industrial automation R&D facilities in Italy, Germany, the Netherlands and China, Delta operates in close proximity to its European manufacturing customers. The company also has a comprehensive and global support network for its industrial automation hardware platforms and a network that extends throughout Asia, where many of the world’s factories are located.

Dieter Hess, CEO of the CODESYS Group , has said, “We’re very excited to welcome Delta to the CODESYS community, which now includes some 400 hardware manufacturers and over 10,000 developers. Delta is an established name in the world of industrial automation, so this is a significant partnership for both sides. We look forward to working with Delta to help them serve their customers and make the most out of their hardware portfolio.”

Greater Efficiency Through Standardisation

Additional costs are generated when a manufacturer adds a new automation platform. By integrating CODESYS, Delta aims to reduce the amount of engineering costs that this requires. Patrik Hug, Head Of Business Development & Product Management, EMEA at Delta’s IABG, said: “Switching to a different motion platforms or adding a new one means you have to write new code. The goal is to reduce the initial switching time when adding a new platform. By standardizing on CODESYS, we are making it much easier for customers to use Delta automation products. Instead of having different software to program each of their platforms, they will be able to write code on the same platform for all of their Delta products. And the great thing about CODESYS is that you have an entire community of application developers. There is a lot of expertise out there to draw from.”

Delta launched its new CODESYS-enabled scalable IPC, the MH2 Series at SPS IPC Drives 2018. The CODESYS platform integrates the control functions of three major industrial controllers: programmable logic controllers (PLC), human machine interfaces (HMI), and motion control, enhancing the motion control capabilities of the MH2 Series and constructing a high speed, high precision EtherCAT motion control solution with peripheral products. With CODESYS, the MH2 Series provides a user-friendly motion control interface and features strong motion control functions that allow up to 64 axes synchronous control of AC Servo Drives ASDA-A2-E Series, Standard Compact Drives MS300 Series, and Remote I/O Modules R1-EC via EtherCAT.

Delta plans to keep rolling out CODESYS-enabled products in the future and will continue to support its existing motion and automation platforms as well.


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Intel Collaborates With Technion To Develop Isreali AI Centre

Intel Collaborates With Technion To Develop Isreali AI Centre

Technion, Israel’s technological institute, has announced that Intel is collaborating with the institute on its new artificial intelligence (AI) research centre. The announcement was made at the centre’s inauguration attended by Dr. Michael Mayberry, Intel’s Chief Technology Officer, and Dr. Naveen Rao, Intel Corporate Vice President and General Manager of the Artificial Intelligence Products Group.

The centre features Technion’s computer science, electrical engineering, industrial engineering and management departments, among others, all collaborating to drive a closer relationship between academia and industry in the race to AI. Intel, which invested undisclosed funds in the centre, will represent the industry in leading AI-dedicated computing research.

Intel is committed to accelerating the promise of AI across many industries and driving the next wave of computing. Research exploring novel architectural and algorithmic approaches is a critical component of Intel’s overall AI program. The company is working with customers across verticals – including healthcare, autonomous driving, sports/entertainment, government, enterprise, retail and more – to implement AI solutions and demonstrate real value. Along with Technion, Intel is also involved in AI research with other universities and organisations worldwide.

Intel and Technion have enjoyed a strong relationship through the years, as generations of Technion graduates have joined Intel’s development center in Haifa, Israel, as engineers. Intel has also previously collaborated with Technion on AI as part of the Intel Collaborative Research Institute for Computational Intelligence program.


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Applied Materials And NUS Launch Advanced Materials Corporate Lab

Applied Materials And NUS launch Advanced Materials Corporate Lab

Applied Materials, Inc. and the National University of Singapore (NUS) have jointly launched the Applied Materials-NUS Advanced Materials Corporate Lab. This is Applied Materials’ first research laboratory jointly set up with a university in Singapore and its establishment is supported by the National Research Foundation Singapore (NRF). Mr Heng Swee Keat, Minister for Finance and Chairman of the NRF, was the Guest-of-Honour at the launch ceremony held at NUS.

The lab combines Applied Materials’ leading expertise in materials engineering and semiconductor technologies with NUS’ world-class and multi-disciplinary R&D capabilities that span across applied chemistry, materials science and microelectronics process engineering. The goal of the collaboration is to accelerate the discovery and commercialisation of new materials for manufacturing next-generation semiconductors. Moore’s Law scaling, the main driver of semiconductor improvements for the past 50 years, is becoming challenged as emerging applications based on A.I. and big data require orders of magnitude improvements in chip performance and efficiency. Thus, materials innovation will have an increasingly important role in achieving these improvements and continuing to advance the industry roadmap.

The Applied Materials-NUS collaboration will focus on R&D in advanced materials engineering with the intent to create innovations that can be quickly transferred into commercial applications. NUS has invested in basic research in advanced materials for more than 20 years, and the collaboration with Applied Materials will tap into the deep scientific knowledge that it has built up in this field.  The parties have identified new materials R&D and processing techniques with a focus on deposition and etching as two key research areas that will help pioneer innovative semiconductor structures and devices.

“Materials engineering has helped enable major advancements in semiconductors for decades, but never before has the need for new materials been greater than it is today,” said Dr. Prabu Raja, Senior Vice President of the Semiconductor Products Group at Applied Materials. “We are excited to launch the Applied Materials-NUS Advanced Materials Corporate Lab and look forward to a successful industry-academia collaboration. NUS and its focus on high-impact, multi-disciplinary science and engineering research make it a great institution to work with on new materials for next-generation semiconductors.”

Over 50 researchers, engineers and doctoral students are expected to be trained at the lab. Professor Aaron Thean from the NUS Faculty of Engineering and Professor Richard Wong from the NUS Faculty of Science will co-lead the lab with Applied Materials to steer greater teamwork and exchange between industry and academia. Applied Materials is also sponsoring S$1.5 million in scholarships for doctoral students at the lab to further help grow the pool of highly skilled talent to support the growth of Singapore’s semiconductor industry.

NUS President Professor Tan Eng Chye said, “NUS is honoured and privileged to be Applied Materials’ partner for its first university-based research laboratory in Singapore. The Applied Materials-NUS Advanced Materials Corporate Lab will draw on the complementary strengths of both organisations to address complex industry challenges. Successful projects completed under this Corporate Lab could potentially increase microelectronics-related activities in Singapore, and this in turn, could generate significant economic benefits for the country.”

“We are also deeply appreciative of the generous scholarships supported by Applied Materials, which will attract more talented students to pursue doctoral training in advanced materials and engineering. These young talents will further strengthen Singapore’s position as a leading hub for advanced electronics,” Prof Tan added.

The NRF facilitates the setting up of corporate labs via public-private partnerships. The Applied Materials-NUS Advanced Materials Corporate Lab is the 14th supported by the NRF and the fifth lab in NUS.

NRF CEO Professor Low Teck Seng said, “The semiconductor industry is highly competitive and manufacturers need to constantly innovate and upgrade their technology to stay relevant. Investing in R&D is therefore crucial for Singapore’s continued growth in the sector. The partnership between Applied Materials and NUS will introduce next-generation materials for manufacturing advanced semiconductors here. This is part of our strategy to strengthen innovation in the sector to meet the demands of the market through better products and training of our researchers.”

For more information about the Applied Materials-NUS Advanced Materials Corporate Lab, click here.


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ABB To Build Highly Advanced Robotics Factory In China

ABB To Build Highly Advanced Robotics Factory In China

ABB has announced a major, new US$150 million investment in Shanghai, China where the company will build an advanced, automated and flexible robotics factory that is expected to be operational by 2020. A cutting-edge center where robots make robots, the new Kangqiao manufacturing center will be located close to ABB’s expansive China robotics campus and aims to combine the company’s connected digital technologies, including ABB Ability solutions, collaborative robotics and innovative artificial intelligence research to create a “factory of the future.”

In 2017, one of every three robots sold in the world went to China, which purchased nearly 138,000 units and is recognised as the world’s largest robotics market. ABB’s CEO, Ulrich Spiesshofer, and the Mayor of Shanghai, Ying Yong, have also signed a comprehensive strategic cooperation agreement focused on supporting industry, energy, transport and infrastructure developments in the region, as well as to support the “Made in Shanghai” manufacturing initiative.

“China’s commitment to transform its manufacturing is a torchlight for the rest of the world,” said Spiesshofer. “Its strategic embrace of the latest technologies for artificial intelligence, advanced robotics and cloud-based computing present a playbook for every country that wishes to have a globally competitive manufacturing base. Shanghai has become a vital center for advanced technology leadership – for ABB and the world. We look forward to working with Shanghai Mayor Ying Yong, other community leaders and our customers as we launch this major expansion of ABB’s substantial presence in China, building on our journey to become China’s leading Robotics manufacturer that started in Shanghai over two decades ago.”

Leading The Way With a Digital Factory Of The Future – Tailored Solutions And Better Performance

The new Shanghai factory will feature a number of machine learning, digital and collaborative solutions to make it the most advanced, automated and flexible factory in the robotics industry, while an onsite R&D centre will help accelerate innovations in artificial intelligence. Using a new, global design approach that ABB announced earlier this year, the factory will be able to dramatically increase both the breadth (type of robots) and depth (variants of each type) of robots that can be made onsite, allowing for an enhanced and accelerated customisation process to meet the needs of customers.

ABB will also be able to combine this expanded portfolio of robotics into an almost limitless number of tailored solutions. “The concept behind this factory is the same advice we give our customers every day: invest in automation solutions that provide flexibility and agility to grow in whichever direction the market goes,” said Sami Atiya, President of ABB’s Robotics and Motion division. “ABB is proud to help our customers in China and around the world with solutions that take full advantage of the latest technologies to meet the challenges of mass customisation, faster cycles and constant change which have become the new normal – even in our own factories.”

The entire Shanghai factory will be modeled as a digital twin, which will provide intuitively tailored dashboards for management, engineers, operators and maintenance experts to make the best decisions. This includes gathering and analysing intelligence on the health and performance of robots within the factory to ensure early identification of potential anomalies. In addition to avoiding costly downtime, ABB Ability offers advanced digital solutions that can improve performance, reliability and energy usage, as well as provide access to cloud platforms, such as the Microsoft Azure enterprise cloud, which is also the first international public cloud service operated in China.

An Innovative Design That Makes Better Use Of Manufacturing Space

The new factory will have an innovative, flexible floorplan based on interlinked islands of automation rather than fixed assembly lines. The company’s logistics automation solutions will a;so be used throughout the plant, including automatic guided vehicles that can autonomously follow robots as they move through production, supplying them with parts from localised stations. This will allow production to adapt and scale efficiently to changes in China’s robot market without additional capacity expansions.

Per Vegard Nerseth, Managing Director of ABB’s Robotics business, said “There’s a large shift away from looking at factory size and CAPEX investments as the way to meet future demand. The concept behind our new factory is to make the smartest and most flexible use of every metre of production. That comes from combining agile automation solutions with the great capabilities of our people.”

To aid the move to mass customisation in manufacturing and to ensure the highest levels of productivity and flexibility, the new Shanghai factory will make extensive use of ABB’s SafeMove2 software, which allows people and robots to work safely in close proximity. In addition, the company’s YuMi robots will allow for close collaboration on many of the small parts assembly tasks needed to manufacture an ABB robot.

ABB was an early entrant in the China robotics market and the first global robot supplier in the country to have a complete local value chain, including R&D, manufacturing, system integration and service. Through close customer collaborations, ABB has helped introduce many “firsts” to local manufacturing including:

China’s first automotive press, welding and painting lines; the first assembly line for mobile phones; and the first automated press line for white goods.

“2018 marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening- up policy,” said Dr. Chunyuan Gu, Chairman of ABB China and President, AMEA region. “ABB was an early arriver in China and we now have a fully localised value chain, supported by China’s remarkable economic and social development. As the market leader in China’s robotics industry, we are glad to build on this success and continue our investment momentum.”

The new Shanghai factory – with a comprehensive R&D centre onsite – will become a key part of ABB’s global robotics supply system, together with the company’s recently upgraded factory in Västerås, Sweden and its factory in Auburn Hills, Michigan, where ABB remains the only global robot supplier with a US manufacturing footprint.


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EuroBLECH 2018 Launches In Hannover

EuroBLECH 2018 Launches In Hannover

GERMANY: EuroBLECH 2018, the 25th International Sheet Metal Working Technology Exhibition, has opened its doors at the Hannover Exhibition Centre in Germany. Until Friday, the 26th October 2018, a total of 1,507 exhibitors from 40 countries will present the latest technologies along the entire sheet metal processing chain. With a net exhibition space of 89,875 square metres, this year’s EuroBLECH has further grown in exhibition space by 2,000 square metres, compared to the last event in 2016.

This year, 58% of exhibitors at EuroBLECH come from outside Germany. The percentage of international exhibiting companies has thus increased by a further 4% with the biggest exhibitor countries coming from Germany, Italy, China, Turkey, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Denmark, the USA and Austria.

For this year’s 25th edition of EuroBLECH, the main topics are Industry 4.0, big data and digitalisation. These new trends and developments offer advantages in terms of new business approaches, streamlining and simplifying processes as well as the improvement of productivity and efficiency. Therefore, the organisers, Mack Brooks Exhibitions, have chosen the motto ‘Step into the digital reality’ as the overall theme of EuroBLECH 2018. Visitors can expect the most comprehensive technology range in terms of industrial digitalisation of sheet metal working at the show this year.

EuroBLECH will also present the entire sheet metal working technology chain, ranging from high tech systems to conventional machinery. This covers sheet metal, semi-finished and finished products, handling, separation, forming, flexible sheet metal working, joining, welding and surface treatment, processing of hybrid structures, tools, additive manufacturing, quality control, CAD/CAM/CIM systems and R&D. The show attracts sheet metal working specialists at all management levels in small and medium-sized companies as well as in large enterprises. Visitors include design engineers, production managers, quality managers, buyers, manufacturers, technical directors and experts from associations and R&D.

EuroBLECH Awards Ceremony

The winners of the EuroBLECH Online Competition ‘Step into the digital reality’ will receive their prizes at the official awards ceremony. The ceremony will take place on Wednesday 24th October 2018, at 14.00 hrs, in Hall 16, Stand C51. Prizes will be awarded in the following three categories: Digital Transformation, Best Start-Up and E-Mobility.

More information on EuroBLECH can be found at:


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South Korea Boosts R&D Investment For Industry 4.0 Technologies

South Korea Boosts R&D Investment For Industry 4.0 Technologies

South Korea: South Korea is set to ramp up its investment in research and development (R&D) for technologies that can facilitate acceleration of the fourth industrial revolution—like self-driven car and Internet of Things (IoT) platforms.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy had announced an increased in R&D spending on five burgeoning industries—autonomous car, biohealth, IoT-fitted electronics, renewable energy, and semiconductor and display—to 50 percent of the nation’s total R&D budget by 2022 from the current 30 percent.

This year, the government has allocated approximately 900 billion won (about US$844 million) to the above five sectors out of its total 3.16 trillion won R&D budget.

Correspondingly, the ministry is seeking to cultivate development of original technologies, related core technologies, and the growth of new industries using these new technologies via efficient commercialisation.

Private firms will also be supported in adopting technologies developed by external talents. Along with this revision, companies are required to foot only 30 percent of the total cost in cash while acquiring technologies from external sources—with the rest in non-cash asset. Currently, businesses have to pay about 50 percent of such costs in cash.

A new review system will also be implemented by the ministry—run by a group of industry professionals—to assess the feasibility of innovative technologies and development proposals.

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