Learning: Fluid power, robotics for plastics, machine tools

Multi-media learning opportunities include tutorials on fluid power, robotics for plastics manufacturing, and a youtube.com teaser for a Siemens IMTS release targeting higher machine tool efficiency. Link to podcasts, Webcasts, and video offerings.


Milwaukee, WI, Ann Arbor, MI, and Elk Grove Village, IL – Multi-media learning opportunities include two half-hour documentaries on fluid power, plus a comprehensive robotics for plastics manufacturing tutorial. Also there’s an invitation to visit youtube.com for a teaser at something Siemens will release at IMTS that could increase machine toolefficiency. Control Engineering has podcast, Webcast, and video offerings as well. See links below.
Fluid power documentaries
Two documentaries, produced by the Minnesota Channel of Twin Cities Public Television in cooperation with the National Fluid Power Association (NFPA) and the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP) offer a glimpse into real-world applications of fluid power.
Discovering Fluid Power and Fluid Power: A Force for Change are 30-minute explorations of the fluid power industry. "Discovering Fluid Power" offers an overview and an in-depth introduction to fluid power technology. "Fluid Power: A Force for Change" emphasizes research in fluid power and the promise it holds for young engineers looking for exciting, socially-responsible careers.
The programs are national and international in scope, with examples and clips from fluid power applications worldwide. They are relevant to any community with students, budding scientists, or viewers interested in learning about new hydraulic and pneumatic research and its effects.
- Discovering Fluid Power video .
- Fluid Power: A Force for Change .
Related Control Engineering

tutorial on hydraulic cylinder anatomy, with cut-away graphic

Robotic integration, investment decisions for plastic manufacturing
Robotics is the topic of the day in a slide show, a comprehensive tutorial provides insight into why, when, and how to use robotics in plastic manufacturing . Tips are offered for robot integration and motion control, investment considerations, and questions to ask when developing a plastics request for quote (RFQ).
The 41-page tutorial presented by the Robotics Industries Association (RIA) covers:
• Robotic misconceptions;
• When to incorporate robotics;
• Robotic plastics opportunity;
• Robotics for plastics: features and benefits;
• Application examples;
• Getting started: How to develop an RFQ; and
• Vendor list and additional resources.
Among robotic misconceptions, RIA says, are myths that robotics technology is complex, that highly skilled operators and support personnel are necessary, that solutions are unreliable and expensive.
RIA explains that robotics is a solution to operator ergonomics and safety concerns, to reduce labor costs, to increase throughput, to improve product/process quality and consistency, when part/product requires secondary operations, and when complex parts are involved.
Process and quality benefits of robotics over traditional manufacturing automation include process flexibility, large spherical working envelopes, high-speed precise motion, ability to work between two presses simultaneously, optimum part handling, minimal product damage, minimal failure opportunities, minimal operator intervention, and minimal product or part changeover, RIA says. Robotics can be configured to optimize the automation and manufacturing process. Automatic tool changers are available for all ranges of robots and payloads. Developing an RFQ walks readers through the process, and the RIA tutorial concludes with a variety of application examples.
Sneaky preview video for an IMTS Siemens machine tool introduction
Siemens Energy & Automation Machine Tool Business Unit did a fun video with some clues about what's coming at IMTS. Shhhh. Siemens machine tool people suggest that there's something BIG in the works, and a video posted on YouTube gives some clues.
A Siemens representative says, "As part of our overall push to court the job shop segment of the machine tool market, we're looking to use this video and other promotional activity (win a Harley at IMTS, for example) to engage the machine shop owners and operators in the process."
Are you interested? If so, take a look at the " CNC EyeTeam Investigation ," hinting at greater CNC productivity by cracking the G code .
Related: Also read from Control Engineering ,

CNC Programming

Webcasts, podcasts, videos on

Along with other topics, Control Engineering offers automation podcasts , process control webcasts , and motion control videos .
Semiconductor International videos include perspective on longevity of CMOS, nanotechnology, and surface preparation at nanoscales from Semicon West .

Read more on filling the automation skills gap .

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