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Bosch Rexroth, Siemens Joins Sodick, PBA Group In JID’s Advanced Manufacturing Ecosystem

Bosch Rexroth, Siemens Joins Sodick, PBA Group in JID’s Advanced Manufacturing Ecosystem

​Jurong Innovation District (JID) is fast gaining traction as a one-stop advanced manufacturing campus clustering researchers, technology and training providers, and factories of the future. Industry 4.0 champions such as Agency for Science, Technology and Research’s (A*STAR) Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology and National Metrology Centre, Bosch Rexroth, ISDN, Flowserve and Siemens are setting up their facilities in JID, joining A*STAR’s Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre (ARTC), McKinsey Digital Capability Centre, PBA Group, Sodick Singapore Techno Centre and Shimano as part of JID’s Advanced Manufacturing ecosystem.

Masterplanned to house the full manufacturing value chain, advanced manufacturers in JID can leverage on the growing ecosystem of R&D, training and capability development, and technology expertise to collaborate and grow together. For example, Siemens will set up their first-of-its-kind Advance Manufacturing Transformation Centre (AMTC) to support the digitalisation and transformation of manufacturing facilities in ASEAN. The AMTC will showcase state-of-the-art Siemens digital enterprise solutions, such as tools to create digital twin facility models to simulate and evaluate its operations in a real manufacturing environment. AMTC will also house Siemens’ first Additive Manufacturing Experience Centre (AMEC) outside Germany, where companies can experience an end-to-end additive manufacturing production line with Siemens’ technology partners.

“The advanced manufacturing ecosystem in JID is shaping up very well. We are happy to see a campus with a growing ecosystem of researchers, technology and training providers to support the adoption of advanced manufacturing solutions in Singapore. The campus will not only benefit Singapore’s industries, but has the potential to serve the region at a time when technology is transforming the manufacturing sector. We hope the JID community can grow collectively to become leaders in advanced manufacturing,” said Ng Lang, CEO of JTC.

Raimund Klein, Head of Siemens Digital Industries ASEAN, said, “JID presents itself as an attractive location for the setup of Siemens’ first Additive Manufacturing Experience Centre (AMEC) outside of Germany. The anchoring of players in a common space will allow us to better support manufacturing facilities on their journey of adoption, transition and transformation towards advanced manufacturing.”

Bosch Rexroth Regional Training centre in JID will administer a standardised training programme following the AHK (German Chamber of Industry and Commerce) framework, to expose manufacturers with the application of Industry 4.0 technologies and practices. Bosch Rexroth will also collaborate with companies to testbed Industry 4.0 projects at the Centre to support implementation of solutions and develop companies’ expertise in the process.

A key feature of JID that resonates well with global manufacturers is its strong sustainability theme in its development blueprint. Set in a natural environment, the district targets 40% green coverage with parks, lush greenery and biodiversity for the community, while an 11km car-free sky corridor with dedicated lanes for pedestrians, cyclists and autonomous shuttles aims to support a car-lite environment. Its underground logistics network—the first in Singapore—will reduce traffic congestion by moving heavy vehicles underground. The district cooling system and estate operations centre will monitor and minimise energy consumption across the entire District.

The 600-hectare industrial district strategically located along Singapore’s western manufacturing belt is expected to create over 95,000 new jobs.


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Micro Electrical Discharge Technologies

Micro Electrical Discharge Technologies

Micro EDM is an important micro manufacturing process because it is unconstrained by the hardness or material strength of the material being machined. Article by Sodick.

Micro electrical discharge machining is similar with the principals of electrical discharge machining (EDM), a thermal process that uses electrical discharges to erode electrically conductive materials. EDM has a high capability of machining the accurate cavities of dies and mould. It is an effective technique in the production of micro components that are smaller than 100µm.

The main differences between micro EDM and conventional EDM are the size of the electrode used, the power supply (current and voltage), and the resolution of the X-, Y- and Z- axes movement. Micro EDM is a process based on thermoelectric energy between workpiece and electrode. In micro EDM, the pulse generator produces very small pulses within a pulse duration of a few microseconds or nanoseconds. Therefore, micro EDM utilizes low discharge energies to remove small volumes of material.

Micro EDM is an important micro manufacturing process because it is unconstrained by the hardness or material strength of the material being machined. It has a wide implementation because there is no direct contact between the electrode and machined component; hence, no contact forces are induced during the machining process. Which is why it is highly suitable for machining all types of conductive metals and semiconductors.

One example is Sodick’s AP30L linear motor-driven die-sinker EDM, which features ultra-precision machining and achieves high speed and quality surface finish by adopting the stable EDM system Arc-less 4. This series has been developed for the purpose of improving the machining accuracy and productivity of small and miniaturized high precision moulds, such as components for electronic equipment, automobiles, and digital consumer electronics, among others. Various advanced technologies are implemented in this machine in order to achieve ultra-high precision machining in the range of 1μm.

Temperature Control

In micro EDM, changes in temperature impact the machining of high precision parts. Sodick’s AP30L will collectively manage all the ambient temperature changes and internal heat generation through the overall temperature control. It is capable of optimum high rigidity mechanical structure by CAE analysis, and built with a fully separate heat source structure integrated with ceramic components and machining-fluid for temperature control. This is the upgraded model of the die-sinker EDM, featuring a newly designed main body, tank, electric discharge power supply and NC unit. The comprehensive temperature control minimizes the effects from the temperature change in the installation environment and the heat generated during high-speed drive, which used to be an issue in high-precision machining.

In order to maintain extremely accurate positioning of the X, Y and Z axis, the machine is installed with Sodick’s in-house developed linear motor, which features high-speed axis motion and quick response, made possible by its ball screw-less design. Conventional drive systems use ball screws to convert the rotational motion of the motor into the linear motion of the axis stroke, leading to the unavoidable deterioration of the high-speed servo motors due to back-lash and mechanical lost motion. However, linear motors directly provide motion to each axis without converting rotational movements of the motor to linear motion. To achieve maximum performance with a linear motor, the K-SMC motor controller is also developed in-house, utilizing Sodick’s control know-how. The feedback from the spark gap is directly fed to the K-SMC board, allowing for instantaneous adaptation of the sparking conditions.

The machine is equipped with a newly developed carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) compact symmetrical head to achieve low weight and high rigidity. In addition to the fully separate heat source and precise cooling mechanism, a newly developed precise thermal displacement compensation system makes it possible to perform high-precision machining. The system also incorporates artificial intelligence (AI) technologies.

The system’s LP4 power supply NC unit, developed and manufactured in-house, has new discharge circuits and control that significantly improve machining speeds for all processes, from rough machining to finishing. The new Arc-less 4 EDM system offers stable, high-precision machining for all types of materials. The discharge state can be maintained steadily; but speeding up is possible. In addition, it realizes suppression of electrode consumption, achieves a wide variety of processed surface quality ranging from satin finish to mirror finish, and improves the overall performance of electric discharge machining.


Read more:

EDM: Past, Present and Future

Adapting Cutting Tools To Changing Trends

Hwacheon on VMCs vs. HMCs

3D Systems And GF Machining Solutions Expand Partnership



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Sodick: UH Series CNC High Speed VMC

Sodick: UH Series CNC High Speed VMC

Sodick’s CNC High Speed Vertical Machining Centres (VMCs) feature linear motor drives on the X, Y and Z axes. They’re designed and engineered for prime speed exactitude edge and have unmatched accuracy.

The advantage of high-speed edge machining is that the top quality machining of sophisticated minute and little shapes. This machining method is wide used for low professional lupus multi-core connectors that are engineered into communication devices with slim pitches for compact transportable phones together with sensible phones, and mold elements for moulding little optical components that need high accuracy and top quality surface finishes wherever it’s troublesome to use polish machining.

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