What sounded like science fiction just a short time ago is now digital reality in Australasia in the new predictive maintenance solutions presented at this year’s IMVAC conference on the Gold Coast from August 6-9. The International Machine Vibration Analysis and Condition Monitoring (IMVAC) professional development conference heard presentations from technology leaders such as the global Schaeffler Group, highlighting advances in its industry 4.0 “Smart Factory” automation and data exchange technologies. Schaeffler’s latest predictive maintenance solutions enable machinery operators to look ever more clearly into the future – they provide machine operators with vital information about the future condition of their machines. Predictive maintenance allows not only the capacity utilisation of factories, mines, utilities and processing plants to be optimised, but also makes it possible to plan maintenance intervals at precisely the right time for optimised “Total Cost of Ownership” calculations. An important prerequisite for predictive maintenance is automated rolling bearing diagnostics, a function that is used in motor gearbox units, for example. These units are used not only in machine tools but also in belt conveyors, presses, and steel mill rollers, for example. Schaeffler BEARINX software is one of the leading programs for performing rolling bearing calculations. It enables rolling bearing supports to be analysed in detail – from single bearings to complex gear systems and linear guide systems. All calculations are performed in a consistent calculation model. Even for complex gears, the contact pressure on each rolling element is considered in the calculation. Because machine drives are operated virtually without interruption, they require intensive maintenance to prevent production downtimes. Therefore, it is important for operators to know the condition of the drive components at all times, and why the bearings are becoming particularly important as a central machine element. The latest generation of the FAG SmartCheck diagnostic system […]
A team of RMIT University researchers led by Professor Milan Brandt are using laser metal deposition technology to build and repair defence aircraft parts in a two-year collaboration with RUAG Australia and the Innovative Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre (IMCRC). The technology feeds metal powder into a laser beam, which when scanned across a surface adds new material in a precise, web-like formation. The metallurgical bond created has mechanical properties similar, or in some cases superior, to those of the original material. “It’s basically a very high-tech welding process where we make or rebuild metal parts layer by layer,” explains Brandt, who says the concept is proven and prospects for its successful development are extremely positive. Head of Research and Technology at RUAG Australia, Neil Matthews, says that by enabling onsite repair and production of parts, the technology could completely transform the concept of warehousing and transporting for defence and other industries. Currently, replacement parts typically need to be transported from local or overseas storage and suppliers. “Instead of waiting for spare parts to arrive from a warehouse, an effective solution will now be on-site,” says Matthews. “For defence forces this means less downtime for repairs and a dramatic increase in the availability and readiness of aircraft.” The technology will apply to existing legacy aircraft as well as the new F35 fleet. The technology is also being adopted in RUAG’s recently established robotic laser additive manufacturing cell. A move to locally printed components could mean big savings on maintenance and spare part purchasing, scrap metal management, warehousing and shipping costs. An independent review, commissioned by BAE Systems, estimated the cost of replacing damaged aircraft components to be more than $230 million a year for the Australian Air Force. CEO and Managing Director of the IMCRC, David Chuter, believes application of this technology […]
Adele Rose – 3R Chief Executive Mention the term ‘product stewardship’ to the first person you bump into on the street and chances are you will be met with a blank look. Suggest that manufacturers and retailers should take responsibility for the products they make and sell throughout the lifetime of those products (the definition of product stewardship), and the blank look will probably turn into a puzzled one. Fast-forward to the year 2050 and this will be a different story. The terms ‘sustainably produced’, ‘fair trade’, ‘organically grown’ and the like were little known or not even coined 20 or 30 years ago but are now part of everyday life. In the same way talking about product stewardship will certainly be common place 32 years from now. The reason for this is product stewardship is a cornerstone of the circular economy – another little-known phrase which will certainly become common place long before 2050. The circular economy is the economy of the future, and ironically also one from the past. Circular principals In generations past there was a far higher value placed on things. When your TV broke you didn’t immediately throw it away, you had it repaired if possible. Things like children’s toys were more durable and weren’t bought on mass. We generally had less stuff, and the stuff we had lasted longer, was repaired and reused. Simply getting rid of something and buying new wasn’t the knee-jerk reaction it is today. Moving to a circular economy isn’t about nostalgia or an ideologically nice thing to do. It’s also not because it’s the environmentally responsible thing to do, but rather because the linear economy and its basis of infinite growth from finite resources is intrinsically flawed and cannot survive. We cannot survive it. In a future in which […]
A South Australian university has recruited a leading quantum physics expert in a bid to win the race to build the world’s first quantum battery. Dr James Quach has joined the University of Adelaide’s School of Physical Sciences for four years under a Ramsay Fellowship. He will work within the Precision Measurement Group in the University’s Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing (IPAS). The new super battery, with the potential for instantaneous charging, could replace conventional batteries in small electronic devices such as a watch, phone, iPad or computer or any other product that relies on stored energy. Eventually it is hoped larger quantum batteries could provide opportunities for the renewable energy sector. Dr Quach, who has previously been a researcher at the University of Melbourne and the ICFO Institute of Photonic Sciences in Barcelona, said that unlike ordinary batteries, quantum batteries would theoretically charge faster the more you have of them. Dr James Quach will work under a Ramsay Fellowship to develop a quantum battery. “If one quantum battery takes one hour to charge, then two would take 30 minutes, three would take 20 minutes, and so on. If you had 10,000 batteries, they would all charge in less than a second,” he said. This is possible thanks to a feature of quantum mechanics known as entanglement. “Quantum mechanics deals with interactions at the very smallest of scales, at the levels of atoms and molecules – at this level you get very special properties that violate the conventional laws of physics,” said Dr Quach. “One of those properties is ‘entanglement’. When two objects are entangled it means that their individual properties are always shared – they somehow lose their sense of individuality. “It’s because of entanglement that it becomes possible to speed up the battery charging process.” South Australia is a global renewable energy […]
TEPCO Ventures, Inc., Zenrin Co., Ltd. and Rakuten, Inc. have begun examining the utilisation of “drone highways,” or the airspace above infrastructure such as power transmission lines, for drone logistics. The three companies also announced that they have safely carried out the world’s first demonstration test utilising a drone highway. TEPCO Ventures, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, Inc., and map publisher Zenrin formed an alliance on March 29, 2017 to confirm the use of drone highways for safe drone-based deliveries. The concept, which is attracting increasing interest, is a focus of the “2018 Roadmap for the Industrial Revolution of the Sky,” which was approved by the Public-Private Conference on Infrastructure Creation for Drones in Japan in June 2018. To develop a drone highway, TEPCO and Zenrin have been studying how to combine data on TEPCO’s infrastructure, such as transmission lines and towers, substations and utility poles, with Zenrin’s three-dimensional maps of the sky, which are currently under development. Going forward, several test courses will be set up in eastern Japan’s Kanto Region during 2018 to demonstrate the practical use of drone highways. Internet services company Rakuten, which has been operating a drone-based delivery service called “Rakuten Drone,” has joined the initiative. The first demonstration test, conducted in Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture, successfully achieved the world’s first drone-based delivery using a power line route for the flight path.
The inventors of the world’s first biodegradable single use nitrile glove now bring you a new addition to their biodegradable hand protection range: Showa 707HVO – a chemical resistant glove engineered with revolutionary Eco Best Technology (EBT), in high-visibility orange. Investing in tomorrow Showa, which translates to “finding a balance between different elements” in Japanese, has paved the way in biodegradable innovation within the PPE glove market. Driven by the desire to make a positive impact on the planet, a large proportion of research is devoted to biodegradable products and to developing fibers that have no impact on the environment. In 2012, Showa’s Research & Development reached a major breakthrough with the invention of the world’s first biodegradable single-use nitrile glove. Showa 707HVO blends the best of single use and chemical resistant technology to deliver optimum fit, feel and comfort while protecting against chemicals. The 0.23mm thick unsupported, unlined biodegradable nitrile complies with EN ISO 374-1 (JKOPT) and 374-5, and is impermeable to protect against oils, hydrocarbons, grease, chemicals and abrasions. The 305mm long glove is chlorinated for easy donning and doffing, with a rolled cuff to prevent dirt from entering the glove. Typically to Showa, the gloves are manufactured using a unique hand former, allowing for a lightweight protection that fits like a second skin. The bisque finish on palm and fingers offers long-lasting grip and excellent tactility. Its fluorescent orange colour makes it highly visible and an excellent choice for food, janitorial or sanitation environments, or to separate applications on processing floors.