Feb 21, 2018 - An auction of heavy machinery at Dubbo has pulled in strong interest and contributed to the local economy, organisers say. Prospective buyers from as far away as Western Australia and New Zealand swelled onsite registrations at the Ritchie Bros. Ag Week auction on Tuesday to 399 people.
Feb 10, 2018 - Haas Automation Inc. has reported that its annual sales in 2017 exceeded 13,500 units for the first time in company history—an increase of nearly 30 percent over 2016.
“It was an incredible year,” said Scott Gasich, vice president of sales and marketing. “Haas Automation performed strongly on all continents, with substantial growth in all markets – especially international markets, which accounted for 55 percent of our sales. Most notably, we enjoyed 41 percent sales increase in mainland Europe, with more than 3500 new Haas CNC machine tools sold in 2017.”
Gasich added that the company is expecting 2018 to be even better, thanks to launch of several new products and updates to existing machines. “In 2018, you will see a Haas UMC-1000 5-axis universal machining center with larger travels; major updates to our turning center line, including an all-new control; a renewed Haas EC-400 horizontal machining center with pallet system; a new 5-axis gantry mill for large parts; a few new tilting two-axis rotary tables; updates to our Drill/Tap/Mill Series machines; and new sidemount tool changers, with up to 100 tools on selected machines,” he said.
The company plans to sell more than 15,500 machines in 2018. “We are targeting continued growth in all markets, and expect to increase our export percentage to 60 percent,” said Gasich. “Our production facility in Oxnard is currently building at a rate to produce more than 15,000 machines this year, and we will continue increasing this output throughout 2018 to meet the growing demands for our products.”
Haas products are distributed worldwide through a global network of Haas Factory Outlets. Currently, there are more than 170 of these outlets in more than 50 countries worldwide.
The acquisition of a computer vision startup speeds the company’s goal of helping farmers grow enough food for an exploding global population.
On a block in San Francisco’s SoMa district, near LinkedIn’s headquarters and dozens of startups, a 180-year-old company best-known for making tractors has a gleaming new Silicon Valley office. But inside, instead of building the latest app, John Deere is focused on how to use artificial intelligence to make farming equipment that can meet modern sustainability and food production challenges.
John Deere Labs, which opened its doors in the spring, made its first major deal on September 6. The company spent $305 million to acquire Blue River Technology, a startup with computer vision and machine learning technology that can identify weeds–making it possible to spray herbicides only where they’re needed. The technology reduces chemical use by about 95%, while also improving yield.
“What Blue River Technology allows us to do is move to the plant level, and start managing at that plant level.” [Photo: courtesy Deere & Company]It’s one step in John Deere’s embrace of “precision agriculture,” the use of technology to target crops and soil for optimum productivity and health. The manufacturer began incorporating aspects of precision agriculture more than two decades ago, building self-driving technology into tractors long before it started showing up in cars. But advances in AI mean that farm equipment can change more significantly now.
“What Blue River Technology allows us to do is move to the plant level, and start managing at that plant level,” says Alex Purdy, director of John Deere Labs. “That’s going to have transformative power in agriculture both in terms of yield but also in terms of cost for growers.”
Rheinmetall announced today that it is integrating its operations in Australia and New Zealand into a single operational unit. Gary Stewart has been appointed as the Managing Director to lead this newly integrated Rheinmetall Defence Australia (RDA) business.
The integrated business will include the existing operations of Rheinmetall Defence Australia, Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia, Rheinmetall Electronic Solutions Australia and Logistic Solutions Australia.
From now on, all businesses approaching the Australian and New Zealand governments under the name “Rheinmetall” will be unified within the framework of the new Rheinmetall Defence Australia organization.
Mr Stewart moves into the role after more than twelve months as chief operations officer at RDA, reporting to Andrew Fletcher. Mr Fletcher has stepped down after two and a half years spent establishing the company’s local footprint.
“The timing is right to pass the baton to Gary, as the company moves from an establishment phase to one of consolidation and growth,” Mr Fletcher said.
Mr Stewart has significant defence and industry experience that includes senior management positions at General Dynamics Land Systems in Canada and Australia, as well as delivering project management and systems engineering expertise to a range of Australian programs. Prior to his work in industry, Mr Stewart served for over a decade as an engineering officer in the Royal Australian Air Force.
“From today, Rheinmetall Defence Australia will consolidate its businesses in Australia and New Zealand as one operational unit in the form of Rheinmetall Defence Australia,” Mr Stewart said.
“I am proud to lead the company into this exciting phase where it operates as a regional hub for Rheinmetall, presenting one face to its customers and building on the significant progress we have made over the last 40 years.”
Mr Fletcher’s professional association with Rheinmetall continues through his appointment as a non‐executive director of the Rheinmetall Defence Australia Supervisory Board alongside the Hon. Robert Hill AC and Lt. General John Caligari AO, DSC (retired).
Mr Stewart also announced new appointments across Rheinmetall’s Electronics, Vehicle Systems and Weapons and Munitions businesses in Australia and New Zealand.
Terry Nichols has been appointed General Manager of Rheinmetall’s local electronics systems business as part of Rheinmetall Defence Australia. He joins the company from Boeing Defence Australia where he was most recently the Director of Program Management.
“I welcome Terry’s appointment to lead the Rheinmetall Electronics business in Australia. This is an exciting appointment and we are anticipating significant developments in this business in the coming years,” Mr Stewart said.
Marco Van Lieshout, who has been successfully leading Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles in Australia, will expand his responsibility as part of Rheinmetall Defence Australia to also include tactical vehicles and other products from the Rheinmetall Vehicle Systems Division.
Rod West steps into a new role and will lead the growth of Rheinmetall Weapons and Ammunition business in Australia and New Zealand as part of Rheinmetall Defence Australia.
At the Oil & Gas Asia trade show, Schwarze-Robitec will present its high-quality tube and pipe bending machines for the offshore industry.
This long-established company from Germany places the efficiency and profitability of tube bending and pipe bending at the center of its trade show presence. In Hall 9, Booth 9077, the internationally very knowledgeable company experts will answer all questions on this subject.
Schwarze-Robitec is the world's leading producer of tube-bending machines and is a strong global player in the important Asian market.
For the second time, the company, which was founded in 1903, takes part in the largest trade fair for the oil and gas industry in Asia. At the Kuala Lumpur Convention Center in Malaysia, trade visitors at the Schwarze-Robitec booth will receive information on the "Made in Germany" special solutions, tailored to the complex needs of the offshore industry. Furthermore, the company will present the numerous advantages of bent tube systems compared to welded solutions at its booth in the "German Pavilion" of the trade fair. These advantages mean considerable time and cost savings that can be achieved during production. Due to the high-quality processing obtained with Schwarze-Robitec bending machines, the tubes and pipes also exhibit a particularly high wear resistance and dimensional stability.
Interested visitors receive detailed advice on all questions concerning tube and pipe bending processes for the oil and offshore industry. Schwarze-Robitec experts will be happy to assist you.
A worker checks on an i5 series model at the factory of Shenyang Machine Tool Company in Shenyang, Northeast China's Liaoning province, Jan 11, 2016. [Photo by Dai Tian/chinadaily.com.cn]
The company had everything an employee could wish for: A generous pay package, job security, excellent perks and a brand name that made it easy to get girlfriends.
The life at Shenyang Machine Tool Company (SMTCL), the country's biggest manufacturer of numerical controlled machine tools and machinery equipment, is a bit different now.
The Shenyang-based company in Northeast China's Liaoning province has gone through many twists and turns: From the first company in the nation to produce machine tool to becoming the number one machine-tool maker by sales in the world by 2011 to drop in sales.
Whereonce SMTCL, just like rest of the Northeast,grew at an astonishing pace, its bottom line took a hit with the development of market economy and China opening itself up to foreign investment and technologies.
A study by Lu Feng, professor at the School of Government, Peking University, said the number of employees dropped from 27,000 to 11,000 without any new workers joining between 1993 and 2002, according to a report carried earlier by China Daily.The labor force now stands at 14,000.
After the central government launched a major push to revitalize the Northeast, SMTC's sales revenue reached 18 billion yuan ($2.7 billion) in 2011. It topped the global industry in revenue for three straight years.
This fast-paced expansion, however, came at a price. SMTCL, famous for producing precision tools, began making mid- and low-end products that generated little revenue.
It knew it had to chart a new course to maintain its dominant position – and so it got down to work. It carried out massive restructuring in all areas – organizational, operational and technological, brought in experts from abroad, turned focus on innovation and started thinking out of the box.
The world's first integrated smart machine toolmaker, i5M8, manufactured by the company is a good example of its innovative approach. First launched in 2007, the i5 series broke the dominance of foreign companies and showed that Chinese firms were also capable of producing numerical controlled machine tools.
That was just a first step. In a move that was a complete break from its past practice, SMTCL decided to rent out the tool instead of just selling it. Any firm that wanted to use it could simply rent it. This step proved an ideal match for the country's entrepreneurship drive, as the company saw 17,000 lease orders by the end of last year.
With this decision, the decades-old company successfully transitioned from manufacturing to becoming a service provider. To complete the cycle, SMTCL then launched its own leasing unit to provide intelligent machine tools for use by other entities.
Only time will tell how successful the company will be in turning around its fortune, but it's a good start.
Schaeffler and DMG MORI are continuing their successful cooperation, expanding it to include the development of additive manufacturing processes for rolling bearing components. Both companies signed a cooperation agreement at the JIMTOF in Japan. In addition, the marketing partnership that began in 2016 has been extended. Schaeffler thus remains DMG MORI’s marketing partner worldwide for rolling bearings and linear technology.
DMG MORI, the world’s leading manufacturer of machine tools, and Schaeffler Technologies AG & Co. KG, system supplier for rolling bearings, linear guides and drive technology, have signed a cooperation agreement at the JIMTOF in Japan that has the objective of jointly pursuing development work in the field of additive manufacturing of rolling bearings. Additive manufacturing is a strategic focus in Schaeffler’s development roadmap.
“Both partners complement each other perfectly to drive the future of machine tools as well as the continuing development of rolling bearing technology. Our joint “Machine Tool 4.0” development project has already demonstrated this with great success. Our cooperation in additive manufacturing means another very important strategic area for the future,” said Dr. Stefan Spindler, CEO Industrial of Schaeffler AG.
Laser deposition welding for the manufacture of rolling bearing componentsThe basis for the joint development work will be a Lasertec 65 3D made by DMG MORI, a five-axis machining center including a laser metal deposition welding unit, that will be used at Schaeffler. The goal is to develop the additive manufacturing technology of what is called laser metal deposition welding so that it can be used for the flexible manufacture of rolling bearing components for prototypes and for small batch sizes. The focus here is on process issues as well as on the materials used and their suitability for the process. In laser metal deposition welding, a material is simultaneously melted and applied to a surface. In this case, the material is metal powder. The heat source is a high-performance laser. This additive manufacturing process is combined with conventional five-axis machining in the hybrid facilities developed by DMG MORI so that the resulting components can be finished immediately afterwards.
Continuing premium partnership in marketingBoth companies also extended their marketing partnership, which began this year, to 2017 at the JIMTOF. As part of this cooperation, Schaeffler is DMG MORI’s marketing partner worldwide for bearings and linear guides. As early as 2016, Schaeffler participated successfully in in-house exhibitions, technology symposia and training courses held by DMG MORI. This cooperation is expected to increase even more next year. The operators of machine tools in particular will benefit from the cooperation in two ways. Firstly, it will help to demonstrate bearings, linear technology and direct drive technology as well as new ideas in sensor systems and linking components. Secondly, it will help to show how these can be used for predictive maintenance, increasing efficiency and process optimization.
Added value through digitalization: “Machine Tool 4.0” innovation projectAt the JIMTOF in Tokyo, Schaeffler and DMG MORI presented the “Machine Tool 4.0” innovation project jointly with other partners. The project links existing technology with new digitalized components from sensors to the cloud. Two prototypes were set up based on the fourth-generation DMC 80 FD duoBLOCK® universal milling and turning machining center. Additional sensors for measuring vibrations, forces, temperatures and pressure have been integrated in nearly all bearing positions relevant for the machining process in the prototypes of the innovation project in order to obtain optimum information about the machine condition.