A Mass Customization Revolution

Written by Patrick Momany

The Industrial Revolution

The great social and economic changes due torepparttar introduction of machine and power tools and large-scale industrial production began in 1760. Throughrepparttar 133540 first 70 years of this century,repparttar 133541 US wasrepparttar 133542 industrial giant ofrepparttar 133543 world. In 1960repparttar 133544 words "Made in Japan" was thought to be a joke. By 1980, those same words had becomerepparttar 133545 standard for manufacturing. In 1985, U.S. manufacturing was in a deep depression. Products were too costly, of poor quality and not innovative enough.

Now, again, America is ranked No. 1 in manufacturing (World Competitiveness Report, 1996).

Mass customization

America’s No. 1 standing is primarily due torepparttar 133546 manufacturing revolution that has been under way since 1985. This quiet revolution is built onrepparttar 133547 unsurpassed innovative spirit ofrepparttar 133548 American people. Innovation is one ofrepparttar 133549 qualities upon which America is founded. American manufactures arerepparttar 133550 world’s leading innovators. The right combination of technology and people is a good foundation for any company. These technologies are leading to a major new phenomenon: mass customization, which isrepparttar 133551 ability to customize products literally in quantities as small as one, while producing them at mass-production speeds. Mass customization inrepparttar 133552 Information Age is replacingrepparttar 133553 mass-production model ofrepparttar 133554 Industrial Age.

The ultimate outcome will be simultaneous manufacturing. Here, even asrepparttar 133555 customer is givingrepparttar 133556 order,repparttar 133557 product starts to be manufactured. It may seem like a fairy tale, butrepparttar 133558 time is fast approaching when a customer will stand at a retailers fitting room, download their personal measurements into a computer, chooserepparttar 133559 pattern and variety of material wanted for their clothing and before they leaverepparttar 133560 outlet their order is in production. Now that’s a truly empowered customer!

Overrepparttar 133561 past few years, there have been a number of articles written on lasers. Each author lists applications as it relates specifically to their area of expertise. However, what EdgeWISE Tools would like to do in this article is to stimulate you to visualize allrepparttar 133562 different ways you can use a laser to produce a variety of products. Let your imagination go. Don’t fearrepparttar 133563 unknown. Those that can seerepparttar 133564 future haverepparttar 133565 greatest opportunity to succeed beyond their wildest dreams. "Carpe Diem" - seizerepparttar 133566 moment!

Why use a Laser?

In 1985, thermal contact cutting tools were developed for roll feed plotters. The "Hot Tip" becamerepparttar 133567 first large format cutting system introduced torepparttar 133568 sign industry. This process becamerepparttar 133569 corner stone that most plotter manufactures built on. Through evolution,repparttar 133570 cutting hardware has changed and significant strides have been achieved. We have seen progressive steps taken to where technology is today.

Most old manufacturing technology uses contact cutting tools; whererepparttar 133571 tool actually contactsrepparttar 133572 surface, it is meant to cut. The cutting tools must be re-sharpened or replace often and asrepparttar 133573 tool wears outrepparttar 133574 quality is compromised. This antiquated method has become an additional source of income forrepparttar 133575 manufactures because they now get to market one or more consumable tools. Contact manufacturing with all its additional costs can now be replaced with a more economical solution.

The next giant evolutionary leap in cutting manufacturing isrepparttar 133576 replacement of contact cutting tools with non-contact tools. The next logical step is to use laser technology for mass customization. The traditional high cost of laser technology has delayedrepparttar 133577 development ofrepparttar 133578 Roll Feed Laser (RFL). A day is like a year in technological development terms. However, recentlyrepparttar 133579 cost of laser technology has been reduced torepparttar 133580 point where today it has become an affordable means of manufacturing.

Roll Feed Laser

In 1988, research and development began onrepparttar 133581 first Roll Feed Laser system (RFL). This research developed more than just a new product. It developed new concepts in manufacturing and new ways to manufacture. The realization of mass customization is appearing using lasers. The combination of these two things EdgeWISE Tools callsrepparttar 133582 laser manufacturing revolution. This laser manufacturing revolution we are beginning to see is becoming bigger than anyone has yet imaged. There are literally hundreds’, if not thousands’, of markets and industries that have yet to be discovered.

Can you change?

As history has proven, there are always those people that lackrepparttar 133583 foresight and intuition to respond torepparttar 133584 changing trends of time. Ten years ago, in 1986, industry scoffed atrepparttar 133585 idea of a large format, computerized, cutting system becomingrepparttar 133586 main work tool forrepparttar 133587 trade. The resistance to change at that time was severe. Seven years ago most plotter manufactures laughed atrepparttar 133588 idea of a low wattage Roll Feed Laser system and could not seerepparttar 133589 potential for manufacturing one. Look at what is happening today, Since 1990,repparttar 133590 number and diversity of applications for low wattage CO2, Nd:YAG and Diode laser systems have exploded. The CO2 laser market has grown on average of 60% per year. More people are recognizingrepparttar 133591 benefits of using a CO2 laser over other traditional manufacturing tools. Machinery like dies, routers, hot knives, and mechanical engravers are being replaced with affordable low wattage RFL systems. Ink jet printers, in some applications, are losing ground torepparttar 133592 advancing low wattage laser used for marking.

environ energy

Written by environ energy

environ energy has invented a technology that will replace fossil fuel and nuclear

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