23 January 2017
MECSPE 2017: the future of mechanical processing in the digital factory: technologies, materials and innovative processes
Cost reduction up to 15% and an equivalent increase in revenue: according to the latest edition of the MECSPE Observatory this is what the majority of Italian mechanical and sub-supply businesses expect from digitalisation, which is increasingly, closely affecting manufacturing industry and factories that are in the process of becoming intelligent. A process that they are willing to invest part of their turnover in: almost four out of ten (37.1%) would dedicate over 10% of their revenue to this transformation. The greatest benefits would go to IT security, which will be implemented in over half of the companies (54.9%) by the end of this year, followed by mechatronics (39.1%), cloud computing (33.8%) and the internet of things (30.8%).
Having stayed one step ahead of technological trends for the last three editions, MECSPE places the “Digital factory 4.0” at the centre of the event where, through a concrete and pragmatic approach, it will be possible to get hands on with the state of the art of the new “manufacturing made in Italy”, admiring how an ever-more efficient and interconnected manufacturing industry is developed from the integration of enabling technologies. To do so, this year MECSPE will dedicate an entire pavilion (Pav.4) to the 4.0 themes, dedicating a series of initiatives to them, illustrating their applicational versatility and potential. The “CONNECTED MANUFACTURING PROCESS” initiative will be an example of this, where a closed loop machining cell will be on show, illustrating how machine tools are made “intelligent” through the Internet of Things and the integration of measuring and control systems, running monitoring activities on the operating function and job management, while also providing information on how to streamline company costs.
The themes of industry 4.0 will also be the focus of the Motorsport Area which – also housed in the pavilion dedicated to the initiatives of the Digital factory – will show the most innovative technologies for precision machining in the field of milling and turning applied to the flagship sector of the Emilia-Romagna region hosting the event. In addition to the workshop section, the area will also feature several competition vehicles and their performance details, as well as a driving simulator with the use of the “Oculus Rift” Virtual Reality by the UNIPR RACING team of the University of Parma, which will allow visitors to fully immerse themselves in the racing circuit.
Motorsport will also be the protagonist of the Excellence Square of Magnesium and its Alloys, which, by showcasing mechanical and metallurgical details, will illustrate the potential of magnesium alloys and the design, transformation and finish technologies that have been used over the past hundred years by the most famous figures in the world of competitive motorsports. To discuss the usefulness of these experiences with regard to future ECOmobility, the reduction of hazardous CO2emissions and the proper planning of the LCA cycle of the energy eco-sustainability of items made with the latest generation of cutting-edge magnesium alloys, a round table will be organised involving top researchers from the academic world and research centres in the advanced tertiary sector.
With more than 1500 exhibitors already booked, MECSPE proves to be a trade fair offering high technological content, capable of providing companies with a complete overview of innovative materials, machines and technology, showcasing the most important innovations in the industry. Collaborative robotics, advanced HMI, the Internet of Things and the Industrial Internet, Cloud Manufacturing, industrial software and control sensors, handling and industrial material handling for lean logistics will be the other protagonists of pavilion 4, which, among other things, will house an area dedicated to reverse engineering and additive engineering, the new horizons of design.
The various processing phases will be carried out specifically in this area, from data scanning to acquisition, from re-processing mathematics to creating files for additive production, and even object reproduction through Additive Manufacturing. Plus, a part will be identified, made with the use of swarf extraction technologies, and then made with additive technologies as well, highlighting the aspects of speed, lighter equipment, shorter assembly times and lower costs (for customised productions).
The Innovation Quadrilateral, the demo space where it will be possible to see the innovations in pneumatic, oil hydraulic, oil pneumatic and electro-mechanical applications, will look at the most challenging and current themes of the power transmission industry, such as Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), a method conceived to measure the overall interactions between product and environment, from the extraction or production of materials to build it, to the solutions that need to be implemented at the end of its function. Also, since the Quadrilateral will be hosting researchers and professors of Value Chain Fluid Power, a newly-established consortium between the Emilia universities (Parma, Ferrara, Modena and Reggio Emilia, Bologna) and Imamoter-CRN, it will also be possible to receive information through reserved meetings, while the University of Messina will curate the area dedicated to non-destructive controls and organise a convention on the theme.
The invisible world and its potential for application in the various industrial sectors will be at the centre of the Nanotechnologies and new Materials Square, an international event that presents solutions, processes, tools and products from the cutting edge companies in this field, introducing, presenting, demonstrating and transferring the world of nanotechnology and new materials, in the field of the 4 thematic areas and of the 11 districts of the show. A renewed format, that will dedicate more opportunities to university start-ups and spin-offs, through nano2Start Prize, the contest dedicated to them, offering the possibility for them to present the best application solution of the year to companies and winning free participation in the Square at MECSPE and displaying their products and solutions. On the other hand, the Nanotech Video contest is open to all businesses, offering a chance to those who wish to present their solutions with a film. The best videos will be aired during the three days of the fair, while the award ceremony for both competitions will be held in the workshop area of the Square at MECSPE, on March 24 2017.
The manufacturing sector, on display at MECSPE is a rapidly evolving production industry, requiring expertise and professionalism that can interface with and manage new complexities. This will be the direction of the CNOS FAP 4.0 production laboratory, which will involve the students and technology partners of the Salesian Institutes. The presentation of the innovative educational/experiential model adopted by the Centri di Formazione Professionale Salesiani- Salesian centres for professional education offers a concrete example of the direction that the school system must take to implement its programmes and adapt to the needs of a 4.0 market.