Content By Quality Digest

Wendy Stanley’s picture

By: Wendy Stanley

Today’s manufacturers have plenty of software solution options that are meant to enhance their productivity. You may be familiar with each of these software packages. However, if you are not, it is important to understand what each of these software packages are designed to deliver.

Enterprise resource planning (ERP): ERP systems help you to focus on the business aspects of your manufacturing processes. This includes things like supply and demand, scheduling, actual costs, accounting, and more. In essence, ERP tracks the execution of the business aspects of manufacturing. But while an ERP system offers high-level tracking of many business operations, it may have gaps in specific functionality. These gaps are often filled by additional software like PLM, MES, or QMS.

Production life-cycle management (PLM): The PLM system was developed to help track processes and product innovation. As such, it focuses on design, development, and production planning. In other words, PLM focuses on the innovation of your product line.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the HEROES Act (Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act)1 which will, if approved by the Senate and president, require OSHA to develop a standard for workplace protection against Covid-19.

Under section 120302 the legislation says specifically (emphasis is mine):

“(a) EMERGENCY TEMPORARY STANDARD

(1) In general—in consideration of the grave danger presented by COVID-19 and the need to strengthen protections for employees, notwithstanding the provisions of law and the Executive orders listed in paragraph (7), not later than 7 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Labor shall promulgate an emergency temporary standard to protect from occupational exposure to SARS-CoV-2

(A) employees of health care sector employers;
(B) employees of employers in the paramedic and emergency medical services, including such services provided by firefighters and other emergency responders; and
(C) other employees at occupational risk of such exposure. ...

Easy Data Collection Options with WedgeLink

Available in “software” and “hardware” configurations, WedgeLink keyboard wedges convert the incoming data from a gage device connected to a computer’s serial or USB port into the “keystroke” format compatible with all Windows programs. Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Access are two commonly used programs requiring a keyboard wedge.

Easy Data Collection Options with WedgeLink

Available in “software” and “hardware” configurations, WedgeLink keyboard wedges convert the incoming data from a gage device connected to a computer’s serial or USB port into the “keystroke” format compatible with all Windows programs. Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Access are two commonly used programs requiring a keyboard wedge.

Easy Data Collection Options with WedgeLink
 

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Tom Taormina’s picture

By: Tom Taormina

Each article in this series presents new tools for increasing return on investment (ROI), enhancing customer satisfaction, creating process excellence, and driving risk from an ISO 9001:2015-based quality management system (QMS). They will help implementers evolve quality management to overall business management. In this article we look at the clauses and subclauses of section 8 of the standard.

Clause 8: Operation

Clause 8 contains the requirements for planning, designing, and bringing to fruition your products or services. The processes within this clause must be robustly implemented to achieve business excellence. They must also be continually scrutinized for foreseeable risk.

8.1 Operational planning and control

8.1 and excellence
The “plan” is a series of interrelated process, each with acceptance criteria, and each with metrics that tie to the organization’s key objectives and key process indicators. Or, at least that has been my interpretation while leading scores of implementations.

NIST’s picture

By: NIST

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have used state-of-the-art atomic clocks, advanced light detectors, and a measurement tool called a frequency comb to boost the stability of microwave signals a hundredfold. This marks a giant step toward better electronics to enable more accurate time dissemination, improved navigation, more reliable communications, and higher-resolution imaging for radar and astronomy. Improving the microwave signal’s consistency over a specific time period helps ensure reliable operation of a device or system.

The work transfers the already superb stability of the cutting-edge laboratory atomic clocks operating at optical frequencies to microwave frequencies, which are currently used to calibrate electronics. Electronic systems are unable to directly count optical signals, so the NIST technology and techniques indirectly transfer the signal stability of optical clocks to the microwave domain. The demonstration is described in the May 22, 2020, issue of Science.

Freedom’s picture

By: Freedom

(Freedom: Cincinnati) -- Freedom IOT brings productivity improvement to any shop floor with its comprehensive Smart Manufacturing Platform that seamlessly connects all industrial assets and business systems, and provides real-time data collection and monitoring.

The Freedom Platform connects and collects data from any industrial asset, regardless of brand, age or process and reports are accessed anytime, anywhere via browser devices—including desktops, laptops, tablets, or smart phones. This cloud-enabled IoT platform includes customizable dashboards and alerts and helps identify manufacturing bottlenecks and inefficiencies and streamlines manufacturing processes.

“Our Freedom Platforms provide the operational intelligence our customers need to increase efficiency, OEE (overall equipment effectiveness) and profitability,” says Jeff Price, executive vice president of Freedom IOT. “Machine tool technology is advancing rapidly and we make the complex matter of properly identifying inefficiencies very fast and simple. Real-time production monitoring arms production teams with the data required to optimize utilization, improve quality, root out inefficiencies and maximize their profit.”

Ken Levine’s picture

By: Ken Levine

Lean Six Sigma (LSS) professionals have an enormous opportunity to add value to organizations and to our communities during this coronavirus pandemic. We have the objective orientation, methods, and tools to help. Process improvement is currently more important than ever in this “new normal” environment. Furthermore, it is clear that this is not a short-term event; it is a time for structural change. We also do not have the time to ponder the possibilities for too long.

The purpose of this article is to suggest a few thoughts and actions that would be helpful to consider.

The opportunity is huge because there is a clear need for change. Everyone is aware that we need to rethink our processes for the sake of the health crisis, as well as for economic reasons. And it is also obvious that we need analytics to find the proper balance between reward and health and safety. This is also not new to us, as this trade-off has always been with us, especially in manufacturing.

Lloyd Instruments Ltd.’s picture

By: Lloyd Instruments Ltd.

(Lloyd Instruments: West Sussex, UK) -- A new single-column universal testing machine from Lloyd Instruments provides ultrahigh-speed testing along with flexibility, reliability, and high-accuracy test results for all materials testing applications up to 5 kN supporting test types such as tensile, compression, bend, friction, tearing, peeling, insertion/extraction, creep/relaxation, and many others.

With a test and return speed of 2032 mm/min (80 in/min) the new LS5HS testing machine improves throughput and saves valuable time in production and quality testing functionalities where productivity can be optimized. As the LS5HS universal testing machine is designed to automate workflows, robots can be coupled to the machine to speed up the testing process even further, and automated, repetitive tests can be run in hours rather than days, helping to eliminate operator error, improve operator safety, and reduce cost.