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 MCADCafe Editorial
Sanjay Gangal
Sanjay Gangal
Sanjay Gangal is the President of IBSystems, the parent company of, MCADCafe, EDACafe.Com, GISCafe.Com, and ShareCG.Com.

Innovative Horizons in 3D Printing: A Conversation with Sally Tipping of Photocentric

June 21st, 2024 by Sanjay Gangal

In an age where technology continually reshapes industries, Photocentric stands as a beacon of innovation in the realm of 3D printing. I had the pleasure of speaking with Sally Tipping, New Business Director at Photocentric, to delve into the cutting-edge advancements and industry applications of their groundbreaking 3D printing technologies.

A Pioneering Force in 3D Printing

Photocentric, a UK-based manufacturer, has cemented its position as a trailblazer in 3D printing and photopolymer resins. Specializing in LCD resin printers, the company prides itself on being the first to develop a printer utilizing an LCD screen—a technology that has since been embraced by many in the industry. As Tipping pointed out, “We believe we were the first company in the world to make a printer using an LCD screen, and now there are many, including Formlabs, which recently introduced their own MSLA printer.”

The company’s latest marvel, the LC Titan, epitomizes their commitment to innovation and excellence. Boasting the largest LCD printer on the market, the LC Titan offers a Z height of 1.2 meters and an XY resolution of 695 by 385 millimeters with an 8K screen. This combination allows for high-resolution printing with a pixel pitch of 91 microns, enabling the creation of intricate and large-scale parts with remarkable precision.

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Advanced Design Technologies Reshaping Automotive and CFD Applications: Key Takeaways from CadenceLive

April 19th, 2024 by Sanjay Gangal

At the forefront of technological innovation, Cadence Design Systems held its annual CadenceLive event, where Anirudh Devgan, CEO, presented a visionary outlook on the future of design technologies with a strong focus on automotive and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) applications. This was followed by an enlightening discussion between Devgan and Jensen Huang, CEO of Nvidia, where the two industry titans delved into the transformative impacts of artificial intelligence, the future of digital biology, and the evolving architectures of data centers. Together, they explored how accelerated computing and deep collaboration between their companies are setting the stage for groundbreaking advancements across various industries.

Anirudh Devgan, Cadence CEO @ CadenceLive — Photo courtesy Cadence

Opening his address, Devgan extended heartfelt thanks to Cadence’s customers and partners, whose unwavering support has been crucial in the company’s journey. This foundation of strong partnerships has enabled Cadence to push the boundaries of what is possible in semiconductor design and system integration.

Devgan quickly pivoted to the evolving landscape of technology. He highlighted the blurring lines between semiconductor companies and systems companies—a trend that has seen traditional chip manufacturers like Nvidia and Broadcom expand into system integration. This convergence is a response to the growing demand for more complex and integrated solutions across various industries, from automotive to consumer electronics.

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Empowering Tomorrow: NVIDIA’s Leap into AI-Driven Innovation and Accelerated Computing

March 19th, 2024 by Sanjay Gangal

In a groundbreaking keynote at the GTC conference, NVIDIA’s CEO, Jensen Huang, unveiled a vision of the future sculpted by artificial intelligence (AI) and accelerated computing. Central to this vision was the introduction of NVIDIA’s latest chip design, a marvel of engineering set to redefine the boundaries of AI capabilities. This announcement was complemented by strategic partnerships with industry behemoths such as Cadence, Ansys, Synopsys, and Siemens, heralding a new era of technological synergy aimed at accelerating innovation across various sectors.

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Revolutionizing the Road and Beyond: The Journey of Highland Vans and Behlen Manufacturing into the Digital Future

February 21st, 2024 by Sanjay Gangal

In the midst of an industrial awakening, two American manufacturing entities, Highland Vans and Behlen Manufacturing, have emerged as beacons of innovation and adaptability. Their stories, while distinct in product and purpose, converge on a common narrative: the transformative embrace of digital technologies to redefine the essence of manufacturing.

Highland Vans: Steering Innovation on Wheels

Nestled in the vibrant heart of the adventure lifestyle movement, Highland Vans began its journey with a simple yet audacious goal: to convert ordinary vans into extraordinary homes on wheels. The company, which was birthed in the driveway of its founder, Szymon, has rapidly ascended to the forefront of the camper van conversion market, propelled by an unwavering commitment to precision, customization, and scalability.

The leap from manual craftsmanship to digital excellence was catalyzed by the integration of DELMIAWorks ERP and 3DEXPERIENCE solutions from Dassault Systèmes. This pivotal transition enabled Highland Vans to meticulously design and fabricate bespoke van interiors with unprecedented efficiency and accuracy. By harnessing the power of digital tools, Highland Vans has not only accelerated its production timelines but has also elevated the quality and intricacy of its conversions, setting new industry standards for innovation and customer satisfaction.

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Riding the Wave of the Future: Electric Jet Skis Take to the Water, Led by Visionary Founders

February 14th, 2024 by Sanjay Gangal

Electric vehicles are taking over the road, and now they’re making a splash in the water with the introduction of electric jet skis. eSki, one of the world’s first fully electric personal watercraft companies, is aiming to make waves in the jet ski industry with its innovative product.

In this interview, Jack Duffy-Protentis, the founder and CEO of eSki, and Paul Protentis, the CFO and one of the lead investors, discuss their company’s mission to create a more sustainable and cost-effective jet ski experience.

Jack Duffy-Protentis

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Apple Unveils the New MacBook Pro Featuring the M3 Family of Chips

October 31st, 2023 by Sanjay Gangal

Apple has once again pushed the boundaries of innovation with the launch of its latest MacBook Pro lineup. Featuring the all-new M3 family of chips, including the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max, these laptops promise to deliver unprecedented performance and capabilities. From students to creatives, coders to machine learning programmers, Apple’s new MacBook Pro is set to revolutionize the way we work and play. In this article, we will dive deep into the details of this groundbreaking release, explore the capabilities of the M3 family of chips, and discuss how these laptops cater to a wide range of users.

MacBook Pro with M3 enables users to compile and test millions of lines of code in Xcode with even greater speed.

The M3 Family of Chips

Apple’s M3 family of chips represents a monumental leap in silicon technology. These chips are the first to utilize the industry-leading 3-nanometer technology, promising faster and more efficient performance. The GPU architecture in these chips is a game-changer, thanks to a groundbreaking technology called Dynamic Caching. This innovation allocates local memory in hardware in real time, optimizing memory usage for each task. The result is a dramatic increase in GPU utilization and performance, especially in resource-intensive applications and games.

Additionally, the M3 chips introduce new rendering features, such as hardware-accelerated mesh shading and ray tracing, which were previously unavailable on Mac. These features enhance the visual complexity and realism of scenes in games and other applications.

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AI and AM: A Powerful Synergy

August 21st, 2023 by Sanjay Gangal

By Robin Tuluie, Founder and co-CEO, PhysicsX

Artificial intelligence applied to designs of additively manufactured products goes beyond standard optimization to produce dramatic quality and performance gains in much less time.

CFD simulation of the thermal behavior of a conformal heat exchanger, used widely in jet-engine cowlings, for a Tier 1 supplier (front edge is blurred to protect IP). The company is using PhysicsX to replace a traditionally manufactured heat exchanger with a 3D printed one. PhysicsX uses its SFAM® process (Simulation for Additive Manufacturing) to optimize the additive design to significantly outperform the conventional one. Image courtesy PhysicsX.

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MCADCafe Industry Predictions 2023 -ProGlove

January 30th, 2023 by Sanjay Gangal

 By Ilhan Kolko, Chief Product Officer, ProGlove

Ilhan Kolko

Unfortunately, 2022 was not a year for predictability, and 2023 is already continuing on a similar trajectory. The war in Ukraine, inflationary pressures and the impact of the Covid outbreak in China on global supply chains are just a few factors creating an uncertain environment. This will continue to have remarkable impact on the industry.

Our latest industry survey has identified the ongoing struggles of warehouses trying to predict demand patterns accurately. Of those surveyed, just 39 per cent of respondents felt they could accurately predict trends and activity for the holiday season. Therefore, it will be critical to develop resilience to counteract what may very well turn out to be a turbulent year ahead. Yet instead of focusing on the external factors organizations can’t control, organisations need to look at their internal operations and focus on what they can control.

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MCADCafe Industry Predictions for 2023 – Croquet

January 26th, 2023 by Sanjay Gangal

By John Payne, CEO, Croquet

The Web is the Metaverse

What if the web were multiuser and 3D? Hint: It would be the Metaverse. The Metaverse will happen much faster than everyone thinks as it gains traction via 3D worlds in traditional web sites. Millions of virtual 3D spaces and worlds embedded in the web interoperably with existing sites will collectively form a significant portion of the larger interoperable Metaverse . No one is going to throw away their current web site and build a new one that is multiuser and immersive, but the parts of the site that benefit most will evolve in those directions very rapidly. The Metaverse is an evolution… the next generation of the Web… not a Revolution.

Read the rest of MCADCafe Industry Predictions for 2023 – Croquet

MCADCafe Industry Predictions for 2023 – CloudNC

January 25th, 2023 by Sanjay Gangal

Theo Saville, CEO, CloudNC

Theo Saville

1. Machining starts to get simpler

One of the big challenges of the manufacturing industry is just how hard it is to get anything done.

I’m not just referring to challenges like finding reliable suppliers, sourcing materials and experienced staff, and ensuring deliveries turn up on time – difficult as all those are. As a student, when I first sat down at a CNC machine – effectively, the mini-factory that powers much of the manufacturing world – I couldn’t believe how difficult and unintuitive it was to use. Indeed, if you sat 99.99% of the population down in front of one and asked them to program it, they wouldn’t have a clue where to start – as opposed to something like 3D printing, which is far easier to get started with.

In 2023, this will start to change. Our company, CloudNC, will introduce new software that will automate much of the process of programming a CNC machine to produce a component, and will licence this through tech partners to CAM programmers across the world.

While we don’t anticipate our technology replacing the role of the expert in the process, we do expect it to do a lot of the grunt work for them, freeing them up for more difficult tasks where their expertise has more impact. And as this tech improves and iterates, it will be able to do more and more – allowing some components to be produced with a single-click of a mouse, instead of five hours (or more) of design time.

2. The manufacturing skills gap grows – but tech helps us compensate

Why does this matter? Because talent is already a severe constraint in the manufacturing sector, and the problem is getting worse. In a digital world, manufacturing is an old-school industry in which progress is reliant on experience gleaned from years of working with tools and machines, and that doesn’t appeal to young people seeking careers as it used to.

The industry figures clearly reflect this: the talent is ageing out. Half of the sector’s current workers in the sector will retire in the next 15 years, and their replacements are nowhere to be found – creating a huge expertise gap, all while demand for manufactured components grows worldwide.

That’s why new technology is so important: it allows manufacturers to bridge the skills gap. If experts are retiring and not being replaced, then we need to enable less-skilled workers to be able to do the same job, while they learn how to become better.

With solutions that improve the production process – whether by enabling machines to be programmed more easily, or organising factories so they work more efficiently and reliably, or anything else that helps a struggling sector do more with less – we can help manufacturing sectors avoid the stagnation and decline that will otherwise follow.

3. Onshoring picks up speed

So what happens if we do bridge the skills gap? Then anything is possible – including the re-birth of domestic manufacturing in countries like the US and UK.

If you can make manufacturing more cost-effective with technology, and enable new workers to perform at a similar level to those with more experience, then you resolve many of the sticking points preventing governments and corporations from achieving an increasingly pressing ambition – securing their supply chains and bringing production closer to home.

That’s been an ambition of those with foresight companies for some time. Companies like Patagonia have focused on achieving a smaller carbon footprint and tighter supply chain, and younger generations of consumers have bought into their approach. But with the recent increase in geo-political tension – from the conflict in Ukraine, the Covid-19 pandemic, and the cost-of-living crisis everywhere – the benefits of producing closer to home now aren’t just environmental, they’re political too.

The obstacle to onshoring, though, has always been cost. As much as we would like to source from local suppliers, supporting domestic jobs and saving the planet in the process, it’s hard for a corporation to do so when a supplier on the other side of the world is offering the same components for a fraction of the price.

But by helping manufacturers become more efficient and reliable through smart applications of technology, we begin to create situations where it does make sense to bring more and more work closer to home. At CloudNC’s own factory in Chelmsford, we’re already making components for companies that used to outsource their manufacturing to China, but are finding today that it again makes sense to look to domestic suppliers for support.

While we shouldn’t overstate the case – technology will not cause Western world manufacturing sectors to rebound overnight – I believe that 2023 will see some green shoots of recovery, spurred by new technology, that in years to come will bear much fruit. And if I’m correct, that’s something for us all to celebrate.

About Author:

Theo Saville is the Co-Founder & CEO at CloudNC.

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