Jun 19 2018

Jean-Marc Cauzac

Beyond Production – How 3D Printing is Advancing Business Transformation

Additive Manufacturing or 3D Printing refers to the set of processes used for manufacturing physical objects directly from a digital model. It utilizes raw materials added one layer at a time, undergoing various processes to create a finished product without the use of tools and molds. This is distinguished by the following main elements:

  • Deposits – the way in which layers of materials are deposited (e.g.: fusion, sintering, and polymerization)
  • Materials – includes solids (metallic powders, polymers, grains), liquids (photosensitive resin), and semi-finished products (ribbons and wires)

When you compare 3D Printing to conventional manufacturing technologies, this process makes it possible to produce parts of almost any shape, but with a shorter machine and tool line.

How do manufacturers benefit from 3D Printing?

The trend towards mass customization makes 3D printing an attractive option for businesses producing complex small or medium-sized parts. Currently, the most promising industries are aeronautics, space, and medical. More general uses are being developed in transportation, energy, and luxury consumer goods. Invariably, it will be utilized across all industrial sectors.

Economic Benefits

The simplicity of implementing Additive Manufacturing results in an overall reduction in time and costs associated with creating prototypes and small-series parts. Having the ability to produce spare parts on-demand and closer to repair sites also help to optimize the management of inventory stock levels.

The decrease in the number of production steps, coupled with assembly line reductions work to streamline the manufacturing process. Further cost savings are achieved when tooling requirements are reduced, such as the creation of thermal cooling channels when molds are required, for example. These gains help to create a finished product that takes less time to produce, utilizes new materials, and ultimately helps to design new geometries without a significant investment in assets.

Technological Benefits

3D Printing offers flexibility in manufacturing not easily achievable with conventional methods. For example, creating complex shapes such as lattices or other custom objects would normally entail a significant investment in time and costs. 3D Printing allows you to integrate functions, such as producing parts made up of multiple sub-systems, while reducing the number of assembly operations at the same time. Additionally, you can use and add new materials easily and quickly.

Environmental and Societal Benefits

The transition from mass production to mass customization allows manufacturers to implement flexible practices and improve their production capabilities. When you compare this to the Subtractive Manufacturing process where objects are constructed by subtracting (or cutting) unnecessary materials off a solid block, Additive Manufacturing adds (or deposits) only the amount of material necessary to construct that object. This reduces the consumption of raw materials, resulting in a more streamlined and localized production line and reduces the consumption of energy for lower carbon emissions. Moreover, you have the opportunity to better incorporate ideas from your user community, encouraging open innovation similar to what is seen in open-source software communities.

Ultimately, the benefits of 3D Printing go beyond economic, technological, environmental, and societal factors. Imagine having the ability to work with a network of suppliers and/or distributors to pool production resources and optimize material costs. Rapid prototyping can accelerate innovation and help businesses evolve towards a more service-oriented, collaborative approach. One in which the customer becomes a closely involved partner rather than just a number.

This article was written in collaboration with the Alliance Industrie du Futur.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.apriso.com/blog/2018/06/beyond-production-how-3d-printing-is-advancing-business-transformation/

Jun 06 2018

The 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace – The Amazon of Manufacturing

Ask any engineer or designer about creating the next new thing, engineering it, and prototyping it, and they will tell you countless stories of trial and error before they succeeded making their ideas a reality. In the past decade,  the internet has become an integral part of the design process and when it comes to finding the right commercial component for your design or selecting a trusted manufacturer to bring your ideas designed in SOLIDWORKS to life, the amount of content and service providers is endless. Finding what you need can be cumbersome and time-consuming.

We launched a new service to address this very need, and more: the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace.

Our ambition is nothing shy of transforming the industrial world similar to the way companies like Amazon transformed the retail sector. 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace is an online e-commerce platform providing businesses worldwide with on-demand manufacturing and intelligent part sourcing capabilities. It is a global ecosystem of qualified industrial service providers powered by the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, and it connects designers and engineers with digital design, engineering and manufacturing service providers worldwide, streamlining interactions and collaboration and increasing productivity.

The 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace provides two services: Make and PartSupply, and you can access them directly from within SOLIDWORKS.

Marketplace Make is the most seamless way to get your parts made and collaborate with leading digital manufacturers online worldwide across all manufacturing processes: 3D Printing, CNC Machining, Injection Molding, Sheet Metal and more. Offered in two service tiers, Make Community and Make Enterprise, it features 50 qualified digital manufacturers with over 500 different machines to make anything.

Make Community is a public service accessible to anyone who needs parts made. Make Enterprise offers the same capabilities plus it enables purchasing teams to configure manufacturing providers taking established agreements and pricing into account as well as allows the inclusion of providers not publicly listed on the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace.

Marketplace PartSupply is the most comprehensive and intelligent online 3D components catalog. With over 600 suppliers, all of which are trusted and recognized experts in their domains, it places over 30 million parts at the fingertips of every SOLIDWORKS user worldwide. It’s never been easier to find parts, compare them or search for parts using a geometric signature of a CAD Model. The best part is, with the integration into SOLIDWORKS Desktop, once the right component is found, one can simply drag and drop it in SOLIDWORKS.

The 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace is a game changer. It allows engineers to iterate and collaborate on design and manufacturing specifications, compare quotes from several service providers and pick the best option. It reduces risk and errors by ensuring that a part or product can be manufactured, while managing all aspects of transactions between buyers and sellers and providing full traceability. The 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace is pioneering a new way of doing business, driving innovation and introducing value in the industrial world.

I recently had the opportunity to talk with a few SOLIDWORKS customers about their experiences with the Marketplace. Take a look at what they have to say, and then visit the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace | Make and 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace | PartSupply services to see for yourself!

This post originally appeared on the SOLIDWORKS blog

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.apriso.com/blog/2018/06/the-3dexperience-marketplace-the-amazon-of-manufacturing/

May 30 2018

The Importance of the Digital Twin

The creation of a digital representation of products is a by-product of digital manufacturing and the digital thread, the essence of which is to maintain and re-use digital information developed during the design and manufacturing of a product throughout the life of that product. That digital product information is often called a digital twin.

The so-called digital twin is an accumulation of data that is established during the design and manufacturing process but continues to grow through the life of the product. Once the product is sold and put into service in the field, its life history including condition data, sensor readings, operating history records, as-built and as-maintained (as-is) configuration states, serialized part inventory, software versions, and more provide service and maintenance functions with a complete picture of the product.

The digital twin allows the service function to analyze the product’s current status and performance for scheduling preventive and predictive maintenance activities including calibration and tooling management. In conjunction with a maintenance management software system, digital twin information can be used to manage repair parts inventories and have the parts most likely to be needed at the right place (on the repair truck or on-site at the equipment location) when the service techs arrive to complete the repair, upgrade, or maintenance. With enough examples in the database, engineering can assess performance of a particular family of equipment and its component parts for product improvement studies.

The basic idea behind the digital twin is not new. Ever since CAD/CAM started building digital models of product physical characteristics and attributes, there has been a sense that this data could prove useful downstream, especially after delivery, if performance and service information could be combined with the original design data to enhance support and feed future design decisions. In some markets, like aerospace and defense, configuration history (provenance) and service records are a primary concern and could benefit from having the data from the full lifecycle combined into one single product digital twin. But technology was an impediment to accomplishing this objective – it wasn’t easy to pass this data between systems and make use of it with different software on different platforms.

Those technology issues have pretty much disappeared in recent years. In addition, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is bringing a veritable ocean of data from installed sensors monitoring the usage, performance, and quality that can be added to the digital twin, making it an increasingly accurate and complete view of the product as it exists in the field.

NASA played a role in proving the need for and utility of the digital twin. Spacecraft are generally inaccessible so gathering sensor information through telemetry is just about the only way they are able to monitor performance and complete any tuning or adjustments that may be required. When manned missions encounter problems, simulators and digital twin databases can help pinpoint the problem, devise possible fixes, and test out repair actions on the ground before asking the astronauts perform risky repairs in space.

The digital twin has proven to be very useful and valuable for all kinds of machinery and equipment products by improving maintenance operations, providing better support for equipment in the field, caving money, reducing breakdowns and extending equipment durability. As IIoT data proliferates, the digital twin will become more complete, more detailed, and even more useful in getting the most out of equipment and maintenance investments while spurring improved product design and support.

This post originally appeared on Navigate the Future, the Dassault Systemes North America blog30

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.apriso.com/blog/2018/05/the-importance-of-the-digital-twin/

May 23 2018

ULTRA-EFFICIENT RETAIL – Tech partnership blurs lines between physical and virtual stores

A groundbreaking partnership among SES-imagotag, Atos and Dassault Systèmes is delivering seamless connections between the virtual and physical store. By combining electronic shelf labels with digital services on the 3DEXPERIENCE business solutions platform, the partnership enables services such as ‘click and collect,’ which permits customers to purchase products online and then pick them up at the retailer’s nearest physical store. Compass asked Guillaume Portier, vice president of marketing at SES-imagotag, about the project.

Guillaume Portier is vice president of marketing at SES-imagotag, which specializes in providing electronic shelf labels for retail. He has been in the role for nearly five years, overseeing the launch of many innovative solutions for the retail industry.

COMPASS: What key challenges do CPG and retail companies face when it comes to optimizing brands and categories?

GUILLAUME PORTIER: Retailers need to optimize efficiency and enable a consistent experience for shoppers across all channels. Services such as click and collect now represent more than 10% of total turnover for food retailers in France. Retailers need to make sure their staff can quickly locate the products customers have ordered. Often, trainee staff or interns will do the picking. With thousands of stock-keeping units in the store, they can’t know exactly where every item is located. That presents a challenge, as a misplaced item can mean a missed sale.

In addition, retailers need to ensure they are compliant with agreements on how and where they display the brands they sell. To be productive and effective, traditional retailers and stores need to evolve and capitalize on the digital possibilities.

What is the background of the Virtual Store project among SES-imagotag, Atos and Dassault Systèmes?

GP: There are some great synergies between the partners in the project. Our vision was to combine our knowledge and capabilities to create a virtual 3D replica of the store that provides real-time information on every product. This is done using electronic shelf labels (ESLs) and 3D models to connect the physical store to a virtual model.

We first tested the concept three years ago in a small store in France, and today it is also live in a superstore near Paris. The project is initially focused on optimizing the supply chain and helping the superstore to locate every product it has in stock so it can ensure efficient click-and-collect services.

Read the rest of this story here, on COMPASS, the 3DEXPERIENCE Magazine

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.apriso.com/blog/2018/05/ultra-efficient-retail-tech-partnership-blurs-lines-between-physical-and-virtual-stores/

May 16 2018

How Can We Make Manufacturing Smarter?

Engineering.com’s Ian Wright interviews Eric Green, Vice President of DELMIA User Experience and Advocacy on manufacturing’s transition from supply chains to value networks. 

In days past, the majority of gains in manufacturing efficiency were won on the shop floor. Nowadays, optimizing a production line is a much more abstract affair. Manufacturers have access to more data and more powerful analytics than ever before—tools that can unlock whole new levels of efficiency, but only if you know how to use them.

Of course, our digital age has impacted the demand side of the equation as much as it has supply. “The days of being able to produce to-stock are gone for many items,” said Eric Green, Vice President DELMIA User Experience and Advocacy, Dassault Systèmes. “The paradigm has shifted so that it’s an almost continuous iteration of understanding what consumers want and how manufacturers can support that, which is putting strain and pressure on manufacturing systems.”

A big part of this paradigm shift is the transition from supply chains to value networks. Green described the difference between the two this way:

“Value networks are collaborative, as opposed to just responding to requirements. If we look at where companies are investing and focusing in manufacturing today, what we’re seeing is that they’re looking at how they can use their capabilities to invent new business models or transform existing models.”

4 Examples on the Cutting Edge of Manufacturing

Green cited several examples of companies that are setting themselves apart in this way.
“What Tesla has been able to do is not only provide a product that’s transforming the automotive industry, but they’re also transforming their manufacturing processes, which enables them to do things differently to bring their products to market,” he said.

Another example Green cited of a company transforming existing business models is CadMakers. Although it operates in the construction industry—with a focus on managing projects—the company is unique in its application of manufacturing practices to construction.

“CadMakers looked at what’s required to support the manufacture of a product, and used our solution to take those practices and apply them to the commercial industry for construction,” Green said. “That’s enabled them to define new processes and have a positive impact on the efficiency of construction projects.”

Green pointed out that despite their relatively small size and market share, Tesla and CadMakers are having disruptive effects on their respective industries.

“Automotive OEMs are now focusing on electric vehicles, and companies in the construction industry have seen what CadMakers has done and are starting to adopt this new paradigm,” he said.

Read the rest of this story here, on Engineering.com

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.apriso.com/blog/2018/05/how-can-we-make-manufacturing-smarter/

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