MachineBuilding.net Technical Articles Index
An introduction to tantalum and how to select suppliers
Last month, comic book fans flocked to cinemas as Black Panther hit the screens. Underpinning the film's plot was fictional metal vibranium, which powered the titular hero's kingdom of Wakanda. Interestingly, this metal was, in part, inspired by tantalum. So, what of the marvellous metal's real-life counterpart? Here, Heiko Wildner, refractory metals specialist for materials comparison site Matmatch, examines the value and considerations of using tantalum.
New thinking is breaking the gearbox repair cycle
Failing industrial gearboxes can be a real problem in any industry, but particularly so wherever there is ageing plant, older equipment, arduous applications or harsh environments. One plant manager, at a company producing construction materials, described the job of keeping production going as ‘a real scramble’ every time a gearbox failure occurred.
Miniature motors for medical applications
With DC motors as small 4mm diameter, it is not surprising that 45 per cent of maxon motor's business is from the medical industry. Patrick Vega, Technical Engineer at maxon motor uk, discusses some of the applications in which maxon's motors have featured.
Robot applications for maxon motors and gearheads
Amir Janjua, Technical Engineer, maxon motor UK, discusses which maxon products are best suited to robot applications and why.
Three tips for testing cabling
While we may like to think of the modern world as being wireless, cabling remains an important element in almost all electrical systems. It is therefore essential that engineers know how to test cables effectively to ensure they are fit for purpose. Here, Matt Collins, business development manager at ide Systems, explains what engineers should look for when testing electrical cabling.
Cobots enable cost-competitive onshore operations
The long-standing industrial practice of outsourcing manufacturing operations to low-cost parts of the world to keep manufacturing costs down has recently taken a turn.
Making smarter investments in automation
Highlighted in the Government’s Made Smarter Review, industrial digitalisation technologies (IDTs) are transforming the manufacturing industry — that’s artificial intelligence (AI), 3D printing, intelligent software, virtual reality and cutting-edge robotics. Here, Nigel Smith, managing director at TM Robotics, explains why manufacturers in Britain shouldn’t blindly invest in IDTs and instead, should use Made Smarter to make smarter automation investments.
Using Industry 4:0 to future-proof automation projects
In the UK, there are many companies that specialise in automation projects. Some design and provide the technology, components or sub systems, usually called Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). Others provide the full turnkey applications. Then, there are system integrators that are specialists in crafting solutions, overseeing the engineering of automated systems, ensuring all the elements on a manufacturing and packing line work harmoniously together to optimise productivity, reduce waste and address rising manufacturing labour costs.