Anders Micski, Manager of Grades and Technology for Business Unit solid round tools (SRT) at Sandvik Coromant, explains how an advanced tool coating can support more sustainable machining.
Research by Schneider Electric and Omdia found 49% of manufacturing companies expect improved performance and cost savings when investing in sustainability. While the conversation around manufacturing sustainability usually focuses on Industry 4.0 solutions, companies must not overlook the significant role that machine tools like coated solid carbide end mills play.
Machine shops now realise that a proper sustainability strategy differentiates success and failure — especially in light of today’s continuing supply chain challenges, and shortages both of materials, knowledge and skills. However, roadblocks stand in the way of manufacturing becoming more sustainable.
Almost a third of manufacturing leaders surveyed by Schneider Electric and Omdia said their organisations legacy assets and infrastructure are an obstacle to becoming greener. 27% identified cost or budget is a key roadblock, and 19% cited culture change as a challenge, or the risk of changing their existing processes.
Manufacturers should consider the significant advantages of better machine tools on production sustainability. Longer tool life can certainly support sustainable machining and ties into a number of other advantages, including reducing the number of tools required in a production run and reducing the need for costly tool replacements.
Another advantage of longer-lasting tools is the ability to produce more versatile products for two reasons. First, a tool with a longer lifespan can be used for a greater number of production cycles before it needs to be replaced or serviced. Second, with longer tool life, the tool maintains its precision and performance over an extended period, which results in improved quality and consistency of the products being produced.
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