High-tech company Rapid Advanced Manufacturing (RAM3D) in New Zealand has opened a new facility in Tauranga’s Tauriko Business Park, with the aim of making metal additive manufacturing more accessible to the Australian and New Zealand markets. RAM has been collaborating with global engineering technologies company Renishaw and, as a result, is using several AM250 metal additive manufacturing systems in its Tauranga facility.
RAM3D was spun out of the research organisation Titanium Industry Development Association (now TiDA) and it has the biggest Australasian centre for 3D metal printing. RAM3D’s new facility allows companies from a range of sectors, including aerospace, defence, consumer and industrial, to explore the benefits of metal additive manufacturing.
RAM3D works with its clients to improve the design of production parts and prototypes. It also uses additive manufacturing to make these parts in a more efficient and cost-effective manner. RAM3D is collaborating with companies as far away as Singapore and the products manufactured at the Tauranga centre are used around the world.
The diversity of the parts RAM3D manufactures ranges from titanium knives used by the Team Emirates America's Cup crew to customised handlebar extensions for the New Zealand Olympics cycling team, as well as titanium lugs for high-end Australian custom bike maker Bastion Cycles.
“The additive manufacturing market is on the rise in New Zealand and Australia,” explained Warwick Downing, Managing Director of Rapid Advanced Manufacturing. “This growth is fuelled by realism, not hype; the enquiries we are getting show a clear understanding of the potential of design for additive manufacturing. This is an encouraging trend. We believe this trend is being driven by industry collaborations that facilitate a better understanding of the technology, such as the one between RAM3D and Renishaw.
“The key to the successful and sustainable implementation of additive manufacturing into the production process is to have a good understanding of the technology and work in partnership with suppliers and clients.”
“RAM3D strongly believes that additive manufacturing is a competitive production technology with an unprecedented potential for industry,” continued Mike Brown, Managing Director of Renishaw Oceania. “The company’s unique combination of skills, facilities and experience make it an industry leader in this part of the world. It is a privilege for Renishaw to collaborate with such a key player in the market to grow the region’s adoption of additive manufacturing.”
RAM3D is planning to continue its growth and accommodate for 20 metal additive manufacturing systems by the end of 2020. The company is keen to work with a wider range of clients from different industries who want to explore the benefits and potential of metal additive manufacturing.
The SMS group has received an an order rom Shandong Iron & Steel SMS group www.sms-group.com for the supply of a continuous caster for ultra-wide slabs. The single-strand caster is designed for an annual production of 1.5 million tons of steel slabs with widths of up to 3,250 millimeters and 150 millimeters thickness. On the caster, structural steel grades as well as micro- and low-alloy steel grades will be produced. Peritectic grades will make up more than 45 percent of the overall production. Commissioning is scheduled for the end of 2018.
In the future, Shandong Steel will measure and align molds and segments using the HD LASr assistant system developed by SMS group. Perfect alignment between molds and segments has a strong influence on slab quality.
Thanks to its three-dimensional laser measuring system and an intuitive operating concept, HD LASr ensures precise and reliable recording as well as a meaningful evaluation of the measured objects.
The molds will be treated with UNIGUARDTM, a plasma-ceramic coating which provides for a mold service life that is four times longer than with conventional coatings.
For this caster, SMS group will supply an HD moldTC (TC – thermocouples). Furthermore, the narrow sides will be equipped with HD moldFO (FO – Fiber Optical sensors) and the Breakout Prevention Assist and Mold Temperature Assist systems.
Breakout Prevention Assist reliably prevents break-outs resulting from stickers in the mold and in this way ensures effective protection and high availability of the plant. Mold Temperature Assist provides two- and three-dimensional information on distribution of the heat dissipation, alignment of the submerged entry nozzle, stirring effect and the contact between strand shell and copper plates.
Additionally, the mold will be equipped with HD moldFO copper plates that detect signals by means of optical fibers. More than 500 measuring points are distributed across the entire height of the mold. Direct visualization of the local strand shell thickness and the respective thickness of the liquid and solid layers of mold powder is only possible using HD moldFO. This provides for a deeper understanding of the solidification process.
SMS group will supply the entire X-Pact® electrical and automation systems for the continuous caster, the technological control systems (Level 1) and the technological process models (Level 2).
Furthermore, the plant will be equipped with Internet of things (Industry 4.0) technologies newly developed by SMS group providing for intelligent processing of plant data and automation of processes. Based on the steel grades to be produced, the X-Pact® TechAssist system automatically selects the optimum technological parameter settings for the metallurgical process.
X-Pact® Process Guidance automatically provides all relevant process information, prompts and operator screens at the right time. All plant control and maintenance functionalities can be performed comfortably at an operator station. X-Pact® Business Intelligence summarizes relevant data from different systems and enables interaction with dynamic applications and dashboards.
The SMS group scope of supply furthermore comprises training of the customer personnel, local manufacturing supervision, installation and installation supervision as well as commissioning supervision.(60 lines of max. 65 characters per line)
Reliable measurement of continuous caster segments and molds using the HD LASr plant assistant system from SMS group. With the HD moldFO from SMS group, among other things the strand shell thickness can be visualized.
U.S. aerospace and defense companies will converge on Geelong and Avalon 2017, the Australian International Aerospace & Defence Exposition, in record numbers this week, looking to build on long-standing bilateral alliances – and a favorable trade and investment economy – to gain a stronger foothold in Australia, one of the fastest growing defense markets in the world, as well as the wider Asia-Pacific region.
More than 80 of America’s leading manufacturers and suppliers, many with proven operating partnerships already in country, are participating in this year’s show, notably: The Boeing Company (Australia is its largest operation outside of the U.S.), Lockheed Martin (more than 800 employees across Australia and New Zealand), Northrop Grumman (aiming to double its Australian footprint in the next three years) and Raytheon (operating locally as Raytheon Australia since 1999).
Collectively, U.S. exhibitors at Avalon represent more than 20 states, including five state economic development groups from Oregon, Maryland, Oklahoma, and a combined New England/New York stand. Oregon arrives on the heels of a nearly $100 million deal that has Perth, Australia-based Orbital UAVE setting up shop in the state to produce engines for Boeing unmanned aerial vehicle subsidiary InSitu. California, the most-represented-state with nearly 20 state-based exhibitors, is also expected to send Eric Eide, Director of International Trade for the Office of the Mayor of Los Angeles, to further interests following the recent opening of Qantas’s US$30 million A380 servicing complex at LAX.
The centerpiece of the American presence at Avalon is the U.S. International Pavilion in Hall 3, organized by Kallman Worldwide Inc., in coordination with numerous U.S. government agencies, including the departments of Commerce, Defense, and State. The Pavilion is a destination for buyers looking for an efficient way to meet leading suppliers, an on-site business center for U.S. exhibitors looking to maximize their exposure and impact at the event, and a networking forum for all to share ideas and insights.
“From publicly traded stalwarts to privately held small-and-medium-sized enterprises, U.S. exhibitors are here because Australia is one of the world’s leading buyers of aerospace and defense equipment, and this event attracts real business prospects and customers,” said Kallman Worldwide President and CEO Tom Kallman. “As the representative of the Australian International Airshow and organizer of the U.S. International Pavilion at Avalon since 2005, our team is proud to work with our counterparts at Industry Defence and Security Australia Ltd. to help exhibitors capitalize on this event and further strengthen our two nations’ bilateral aerospace, defense and economic partnerships.”
In addition to organizing the national Pavilion, Kallman is rolling out its Ask America advocacy campaign inviting show attendees to visit U.S. exhibitors. The Ask America message will be placed prominently on site, integrated into hospitality and VIP events during the show, and promoted in social media.
“The United States is the biggest international exhibitor at Avalon because it’s the world's biggest aerospace and defense supplier, but that’s no guarantee buyers will look to work with U.S. companies over others,” said Kallman. “On behalf of the U.S. International Pavilion, we have a responsibility to advocate not only for our exhibitors, but for our country in this highly competitive global marketplace.
“We invite every Avalon 2017 visitor to ask America because we are listening,” he said. “Whether as manufacturing, supply chain or service partners, the United States is committed to our trade and investment partnerships in Australia, we bring smart ideas to the table, and we have the best-skilled workforce – here and in the States – ready to do the job.”
| A Kallman Worldwide release | February 28, 2017 ||
SCHAUMBURG, IL (February 2017) - HEIDENHAIN's popular TNC 640 mill-turn control is now available with an exciting new option, a 3D Probing cycle, called Cycle 444. Already equipped with both manual and automatic probing cycles for datum setting, workpiece alignment and inspection, the TNC 640 offers this additional 3D probing cycle to meet manufacturers' increased requirements for automation and advanced probing routines that inspect free form surfaces where measurement positions are often difficult to capture.
Cycle 444 checks one specific point on the surface of each workpiece. The contact point is determined by a vector that is normal to the 3D surface. The measurement cycle enables the measurement of 3D shapes such as free form surfaces of a mold part, and based on a defined tolerance range along the vector, checks the determined measured values. It is advisable to determine the normal vector with the help of a CAD/CAM system.
As with all HEIDENHAIN control cycles for automatic probing, a parameter is given for classifying a part as Good/Rework/Scrap. Additionally, the TNC outputs a log file with documented positions and deviations.
If option 92 "3D-ToolComp" is active on the TNC 640, a touch probe can be recalibrated using a calibration ball, and the system accuracy for measurements can be improved in this way. The key here is that the touch probe is re-calibrated for various contact points along the ball-tip of the touch probe styli. In that way, repeatability is increased for the vectors formed by the contacts points and the spheres' centers.
HEIDENHAIN also offers touch probes. The TS 460 is a universal touch probe with optical trigger mechanism for higher repeatability and also features a collision-adapter.
HEIDENHAIN CORPORATION is the North American subsidiary of DR. JOHANNES HEIDENHAIN GmbH, a leading international manufacturer of precision measurement and control equipment. Our product line includes linear scales, rotary and angular encoders, digital readouts, digital length gauges, CNC controls, and machine inspection equipment.
Tetra Pak building $25m Thai packaging plant forseeing a 30% jump in Asia-Pacific demand for beverage caps, lids
SINGAPORE -- European food-processing and packaging company Tetra Pak announced it will invest 24 million euros ($25 million) to build a plant to produce caps and lids for beverage products in Thailand. The company said it aims to tap growing demand for such packaging in the Asia-Pacific region.
The facility will produce caps and lids for dairy, juice and other beverage products, mainly for customers in Asia, Australia and New Zealand. Production capacity will be more than 3 billion units per year.
The factory is expected to open in early 2018 and will be located in the same compound as Tetra Pak's existing Straws and Strips plant in the eastern province of Rayong.
Michael Zacka, Tetra Pak's regional vice president for South Asia, East Asia and Oceania, said in a statement that customers are "increasingly looking for packaging that is functional and convenient." He added that the company's growth outlook for the region is "extremely positive" and that the plant will help "open many new opportunities."
Tetra Pak expects demand for packaging with caps or lids in the region to grow by more than 30% between 2015 and 2018. In November, it announced a 100 million euro investment in a new Vietnamese packaging plant to expand its manufacturing footprint in the region. The same month, it also signed a deal with Dubai-based Binghatti Holding to receive approximately $6.8 million in financing to develop packaging and filling lines at an Abu Dhabi factory.
Mondelez International, the US company that returned US$1.1 billion to shareholders last year, is to close its Cadbury factory at the end of 2018, moving production to Australia and eliminating 350 jobs to cut costs.
The decision will end more than 80 years of production in Dunedin, where the Cadbury factory is a popular tourist attraction and can send the aroma of chocolate wafting over nearby suburbs. The first redundancies would be made before the end of this year, with about 100 people kept on in the business until early 2018, it said.
Mondelez vice president for Australia, New Zealand and Japan Amanda Banfield said the company was "focused on becoming globally cost-competitive through increased production and investment in larger sites while reducing costs, which allows us to fuel the growth in our brands".
She said the factory's distance from its main market of Australia, "low volume and complex product portfolio, make it an expensive place to manufacture our products". The Dunedin factory exports 70 percent of production, mainly to Australia.
Cadbury has lost supermarket shelf space in New Zealand to local brands including J.H. Whittaker & Sons, the nation's second-largest chocolate brand behind Cadbury. It has also battled to retain consumer loyalty after missteps including replacing some of the cocoa butter in its bars with palm oil, a move it reversed after complaints about the taste and the source of the oil.
Nasdaq-listed Mondelez reported global sales US$25.9 billion in 2016, a year in which it returned US$800 million to shareholders by repurchasing stock and paid about US$300 million in cash dividends. It has forecast organic net revenue growth of 1 percent for 2017 after a 0.6 percent gain in 2016. Net earnings last year fell 77 percent to US$1.66 billion.
Mondelez shares last traded at US$45.37 and have gained about 16 percent in the past 12 months.
The company said it was considering making an investment in 'Cadbury World' in Dunedin and about the future use of the factory site. A final decision on a proposed redevelopment would be made by April, it said in a statement.
Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei, a Dunedin resident, sought to make election-year capital out of the announcement, saying the Cadbury factory "has survived major economic ups and downs for more than a hundred years, but it hasn’t been able to survive a National government’s inaction on manufacturing".
“If elected to government in September, we will establish a Minister for Manufacturing in Cabinet, to better represent the interests of manufacturers and ensure they thrive," she said, calling the closure "a tragedy for Dunedin".
Local Labour MPs David Clark and Clare Curran said the closure was "a devastating blow for Dunedin".
Following the announcement of Managing Director, Michael Brockhoff's retirement from MaxiTRANS, the trailer builder has appointed Dean Jenkins as his replacement, effective 1 March.
According to MaxiTRANS, Jenkins (pictured) brings two decades of industry experience to the role, most recently as COO and Executive Director of leading engineering business, Weir Group.
Chairman of MaxiTRANS, Robert Wylie, said the Board was delighted to appoint a senior international executive of Jenkins' calibre and experience to the role.
"Dean has over 20 years' executive experience in managing transport and manufacturing businesses. He has a strong track record of successfully leading large, complex and truly global companies, driving change and improvement throughout his career," Wylie said.
"This in-depth international transport and engineering experience and leadership capability means he is ideally suited to build MaxiTRANS' next phase of development to generate superior value for shareholders."
Previous to his role at Weir Group, Jenkins also was CEO of UGL Rail, Australia's largest supplier and maintainer of rolling stock with operations in Hong Kong, New Zealand and supply chain in China.
He also spent 11 years in senior leadership roles with Qantas, including the position of Group General Manager/Head of Engineering, Material and Logistics.
Jenkins said he was delighted to have been appointed to the position of Managing Director of MaxiTRANS.
"I am excited about the prospect of leading MaxiTRANS and working with the Board and the leadership team to build the company's competitive position. The company has strong brands and enduring customer relationships which provide a strong platform to generate growth opportunities right across the business," Jenkins said.
SkyNews reports that The McLaren group's sports car arm will repatriate production and development of its chassis in a move creating at least 200 jobs.
McClaren has agreed a £50m deal to build a new production and research facility for its carbon fibre sports car chassis in the UK.
McLaren Automotive, a sister firm of the wider group which includes the Formula One racing team, is bringing the work back to the country from overseas in a move creating 200 jobs.
The roles would comprise mainly production staff, with 50 support workers.
The factory is to be housed next to the University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) under a partnership arrangement, which includes a training programme for McLaren apprentices.
Full production is due to be reached by 2020.
Mike Flewitt, McLaren Automotive's chief executive, said: "In 1981, McLaren was the first company to recognise the exceptional properties of carbon fibre, and we have designed the highly technical material to be at the heart of every McLaren road and racing car ever since.
"The now-iconic McLaren F1 was the world's first road car to be built with a carbon fibre chassis and every car built more recently by McLaren Automotive has the same.
"Creating a facility where we can manufacture our own carbon fibre chassis structures is therefore a logical next step."
He added: "At the AMRC, we will have access to some of the world's finest composites and materials research capabilities, and I look forward to building a world-class facility and talented team at the new McLaren Composites Technology Centre."
In the highly competitive world of fabricated structural steel, some local producers and advocates now actively promote reducing the labour component by rationalising building design to enable them to reduce their price and deliver simplicity, says Challenge Steel chief executive Suresh Nagaiya.
“However, Challenge Steel achieves its competitiveness by dealing with one of China’s largest and highly renowned steel producers. Therefore, we can deliver both design complexity or simplicity cost-effectively for the likes of signature buildings.
“The fact that Challenge Steel is now involved in some major rebuilds in Christchurch post its devastating earthquakes shows the level of assurance, absolute quality, and sheer cost-effectiveness we’re able to deliver,” says Mr Nagaiya.
“Thankfully in New Zealand we’re seeing more and more award-winning design in significant public and private buildings. What’s more, steel is now often a very visible component of a building’s celebrated architecture and aesthetics.”
Mr Nagaiya also notes that renowned engineer Dr Peter Johnstone, who’s been in the media a lot following recent earthquakes, advocates that steel not concrete should increasingly be the lead design component in large New Zealand buildings.
Challenge Steel has quickly risen to become one of New Zealand’s largest importers of fabricated structural steel. The CEO says its business continues to grow as public entities and private developments up and down the country demand even more confidence and integrity around quality assurance.
“Challenge Steel is fast getting recognised for establishing a whole new benchmark when it comes to quality assurance and comprehensive product testing, making the likes of developers, procurement and project managers very receptive to our arrival into the local marketplace.
“People are increasingly cognisant of any potential issues and simply can’t afford to procure products that could erode public or consumer confidence in their structures. They naturally want the highest of assurance and we can categorically deliver.”
In recent months Suresh Nagaiya along with Challenge Steel founder and chairman Bert Govan have made trips to China with clients, contractors and prominent engineers showing them the exhaustive processes in action and providing confidence in the product and systems in place.
“We take clients and construction industry experts over to China and they are blown away. They soon see the quality of product being turned out, the robust testing and certification process, and the fact that each steel product is stamped with a unique code to ensure complete traceability. They also see Southern QA’s people on the ground at the fabrication factory. They come back to New Zealand with all the confidence they needed,” he says.
Challenge Steel had its genesis in the Christchurch earthquakes. Its supplier is the Shangdong Iron & Steel Group (Shan Steel) – a wholly state-owned steel conglomerate and one of China’s largest steel makers.
Mr Nagaiya says the motivation of Challenge Steel was to challenge and change New Zealand’s traditional procurement model. They wanted to introduce a lower price threshold into the local steel market and to positively impact on the high construction costs that were negatively impacting on the likes of housing affordability.
“We developed a world-class model over three years that delivers best practice at every step, and we’ve partnered with an array of expert individuals and world-class organisations. As well as manufacturer tests, our products are independently checked both in China and New Zealand, and then potentially by our own city councils. It’s very rigorous.”
Another factor inspiring confidence are Challenge Steel’s key leaders. Last year Tony Sewell and Geoff Cranko joined the board as its two new independent directors.
Mr Sewell is also the current chairman of Business New Zealand, and the former long-time chief executive of Ngai Tahu Property Limited. Geoff Cranko is also the Group Managing Partner of Strategy Design & Advertising and a former CEO of SGS.
Chief executive Suresh Nagaiya is a University of Auckland civil engineering graduate and IPENZ member. As a part-owner of central Auckland project management company, N-Compass, he also brings considerable senior project management experience.
“Challenge Steel is living proof you can deliver both competition and quality into the local steel market. It’s a proposition that’s really resonating and we’re now helping to lift local confidence in imported fabricated structural steel,” says Mr Nagaiya.
Load handling equipment provider, Kalmar, will soon deliver two new container straddle carrier models to New Zealand shipping company, Port Otago.
According to Port Otago, the two Kalmar straddle carriers will include its ESC350 and ESC450 models. “Improved economy, performance, reliability, and safety are key facets of this purchasing decision, and the Port welcomes any developments in Straddle Carrier design that reflect genuine safety improvements,” said Bob Smillie, Maintenance Manager, Port Otago.
“The Port is currently conducting a detailed analysis of Kalmar’s HSC350 Hybrid, a design that is expected to be a leading contender for future Straddle Carrier replacement decisions.
“Port Otago Ltd operates in a pristine area of New Zealand, taking pride in environmental conservation while undertaking their operations. Kalmar therefore focuses on providing solutions to support their operations while maintaining environmental sustainability.”