Content By Quality Digest

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By: Quality Digest

(Nordlocker: Panama) -- The human element remains the weakest link in cybersecurity, as an annual report reveals that 85 percent of all data breaches are in one way or another caused by an employee. As digital technologies become essential in modern organizations, no industry is safe from cybercriminals exploiting their weak spots.

“Identifying where the risks lie is a good start,” says Oliver Noble, an expert in cybersecurity risk management at NordLocker, an encrypted cloud service provider. “But organizations also need to invest in cybersecurity awareness campaigns that address specific risks.” Below, he lays out how security-oriented work culture is put into practice at NordLocker and encourages other companies to implement a similar approach.  

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By: Bryce Austin

There were seven people seated around the table: The CEO, the VP, the CFO, the special agent from the FBI, the owner, the forensics technician, and the company’s CISO (chief information security officer).

“Don’t pay,” was the CEO’s vote. Same for the VP.

“Pay it,” was the owner’s response. The CFO nodded in agreement.

“Paying could be a violation of Federal law,” stated the FBI representative.

The CISO had a hard time getting words out, as this was the largest ransom that he had dealt with at the time. $1.2 million was a lot of money. “I don’t see another option given the status of our backups,” he said. “Either we pay the ransom, or we begin liquidating the assets of the company as soon as possible. Which is the lesser of two evils?”

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By: Quality Digest

(Marposs: Auburn Hills, MI) -- Marposs, a leader in measurement, inspection, and test technologies, has announced its NVH Gear Tester for identifying potential gear defects at the component level prior to gear box assembly. The NVH gear tester, which works on the single-flank testing principle of one master gear meshing with the component under inspection, is able to detect macro-geometry (e.g., nicks, runout) and micro-geometry (gear-mesh excitation, ghost orders) defects that cause gear whine and noise phenomena.

With electrification of the automotive industry, many hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) and full electric vehicle (EV) drivetrains are facing challenges such as increased NVH requirements in high-speed e-Drives. And, although the number of gear wheels is significantly reduced in electric vehicles due to the use of one- or two-speed reducers instead of the classic manual, automatic, or twin-clutch gearboxes, these gear wheels are loaded with torque and rpm not previously found in high-volume production.

With hybrids and EVs, the noise from an internal combustion engine (ICE) is intermittent or nonexistent, so that transmission makes the most dominant vehicle noise. Noise, therefore, becomes not only a mechanical issue for the performance of the transmission, but also a comfort issue for the driver.

How companies should respond to vaccine mandates
CEOs are facing many questions from employees when it comes to their rights and safety in the context of vaccine mandates and other issues. How should companies respond? We talk with James Bailey, Hochberg Professor of Leadership at George Washington University.

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By: Quality Digest

(EASE: Mission Viejo, CA) -- Ease Inc., a leading provider in plant floor audits and insights software for manufacturers, has announced the 2021 Champions for Quality Award winners. In this fourth year of the awards there were a record number of nominations from across multiple countries and continents.

Often quality professionals don’t get much attention until something goes wrong: a rise in defects, scrap or re-work, a major quality escape or customer complaint. The Champions for Quality Awards aim to recognize the people who are behind building a culture of quality and building long-lasting quality processes which positively impact the bottom line.

The Champions for Quality Awards combine public award nominations from manufacturers around the world with insight-driven awards from the EASE plant floor audit platform. The awards recognize individuals, specific manufacturing facilities, and entire organizations across a range of categories.

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By: Quality Digest

(ABB: Zurich, Switzerland) -- Global technology company ABB is providing a package of metals industry-specific digital-ready solutions, including drives, controller, and converter infrastructure, to enable Global Steel Wire (GSW), part of CELSA Group, to modernize operations at its Santander steel mill.

GSW manufactures and brings to market a range of steel products, including wire rod, cables, and ropes. Its high-quality steel cables are used extensively in the automotive industry as well as in mattress springs. The steelmaker had been exploring the use of digital technologies to optimize its rolling wire production and will now benefit from the expertise and metals industry domain knowledge of ABB.

As part of the contract, ABB will provide its medium voltage drives for high power applications, MEGADRIVE-LCI, together with AC 800PEC controllers. MEGADRIVE-LCI is an advanced type of converter that enables variable speed control and soft starting of large synchronous machines for many industrial applications. The technology will deliver reliability using a fuseless drive design and robust thyristor components, which enable fast and successful start up. The demand-based medium voltage drives will result in optimized power consumption and higher process efficiency.

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By: Arron Angle

I just received and read the “2021 ASQE Insights on Excellence Executive Brief.” The brief examines how quality initiatives are progressing in the digital era, based on the views and experiences of 542 executives and quality professionals from global enterprises. Here we go again, I thought.

Yes, technology drives change, change drives new quality issues, and new quality issues drive quality professionals to come up with new quality performance metrics and enhancements. I’ve read these same platitudes for years. We believe that systemic issues of quality can be solved with new programs, new spreadsheets, or new ways to calculate quality performance. Obviously, some of the solutions hit the root cause of a specific issue. But the systemic factor, which has always been present and is at the heart of all matters of quality as technology drives change, is management.

Management in most companies is the root cause of not keeping up with technology or the market, or the generational changes needed as younger employees are hired. It’s all about culture and behaviors. As an example, let’s compare and contrast safety and quality.

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By: Quality Digest

(Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence: North Kingstown, RI) -- Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division has revealed its plans to build the industry’s most flexible and open additive manufacturing (AM) ecosystem to help overcome complexities in 3D printing processes and support customers in effectively building their product development and manufacturing workflows.

With several new additions to the ecosystem announced this week alone—Sciaky, Meltio, CADS Additive, AMcubator and Additive Center—and many more under way, Hexagon’s suite of AM partners and products is becoming one of the most comprehensive on the market. Plans to continue building an open ecosystem from concept to customer with the shared purpose of high quality were revealed at 3D printing industry event Formnext 2021, where the challenges of industrializing AM have been at the forefront of discussions.

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By: Gleb Tsipursky

Organizations will need to pivot their corporate culture if they wish to survive and thrive in the world of virtual collaboration after the pandemic. The most important changes will stem from the wide-scale and permanent shift to hybrid and fully remote modes of working.

Between 65 percent to 75 percent of employers intend to have a mainly hybrid schedule, with a minority of staff fully remote. This is being led by large companies that announced a permanent switch. Combining hybrid and fully remote work largely matches what employees want.

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By: Quality Digest

(Mold-Masters: Georgetown, ON, Canada) -- On recent blood vial applications that leveraged SYMFILL Technology, barrel bow was reduced by up to 90 percent (as little as 0.15 mm) by eliminating core shift. SYMFILL Technology is exclusively available with Mold-Masters hot runner systems.

SYMFILL Technology significantly minimizes core shift to improve part quality (straightness) of cylindrical, center-injected components having an aggressive L/D ratio. It achieves this by allowing the melt to enter the nozzle runner channel from multiple sides as opposed to the single-entry point of traditional designs. Examples of such components that would benefit from this technology include blood tubes, needle shields, over caps, and other similar parts from the medical, cosmetic, and stationary industries. 

Minimizing barrel bow offers many downstream processing advantages, which includes:
• Tubes roll concentrically in the labelling machine
• Increases final stage throughput
• Minimizes machine downtime