Food Science meets Rocket Science

Posted by Steve Beyer on Jul 17, 2018 4:31:56 PM

Conventional wisdom in many corners of industry may steer seekers of outside services such as systems integration (Optimation’s business) to those firms with direct exact and typically singular experience in a given field. 

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Topics: Technology, Trends, food industry

Process Monitor Analytics and Industry 4.0

Posted by Bill Pollock on Jul 11, 2017 2:19:06 PM

The Internet of Things is revolutionizing all areas of our lives.  In manufacturing, Industry 4.0 is a revolution as transformative as the first industrial revolution that began 300 years ago.  Advancements in manufacturing analytics are coming fast and furious.  Not all manufacturing analytics are totally new however.

 A quarter century ago, at the height of the silver halide dominance in imaging, systems engineers at Kodak had developed a process monitoring analytics system that was decades ahead of its time. This powerful toolset was one of the methods that enabled Kodak to manufacture high quality and consistently uniform chemicals, dyes, and emulsions in plants operating in five different continents.  Using the analytical capability of their proprietary product, Kodak was able to find process malfunctions before they occurred, predict product response performance, summarize massive and complex data to an actionable data subset and as a result they could reduce the manufacture of off-specification product.

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Topics: Data Logging, Technology, System Integration, Smart Factory, Software

Rochester's future is in STEM

Posted by Wendy Smith on Apr 6, 2017 3:16:37 PM

Earlier this year it was announced that Rochester ranked 23rd in the U.S. for STEM workers in a study done by WalletHub.  WalletHub is a social website that offers financial tools and information for consumer and small business owners.  They ranked 100 of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas on 17 metrics from per-capita job opening for STEM graduates to projected demand for STEM workers by 2020.  This is great news for the area, but how do we move up on this and ensure that we at least hold our position and move higher on the list?

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Topics: Manufacturing, Technology, Trends

What's all the buzz about ... 3D printing?

Posted by Pete Sherer on Jan 30, 2017 11:42:27 AM

As a new year begins to unfurl before us, and we consider trends that may become popular and successful, one technology that is poised to have a significant impact on how goods are manufactured is 3D printing.  This breakthrough method, which relies on building plastic, ceramic or metal components by fusing together droplets of liquefied feedstock or particles of finely ground powder, offers several thought provoking advantages.  So, let’s talk about 3D printing… 

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Topics: Manufacturing, Technology, Trends

Rochester, Photonics and the Future

Posted by Bill Pollock on Nov 1, 2016 3:21:27 PM

Last week the New York Photonics & Rochester Regional Photonics Cluster held their annual meeting. The Rochester Regional Photonics Cluster has been around for a long time and its predecessor the Institute for Optics was founded in Rochester in 1929. The photonics industry has been around a long time in Rochester. We haven’t been talking about it very much for all that time, in fact hardly at all until recently. Now it’s a big deal. Chuck Schumer, Louise Slaughter and Dr. Ernest Moniz, the Secretary of the Department of Energy himself, came to Rochester to attend the meeting. It was held with a great deal of pomp and ceremony at the Rochester Museum and Science Center. It was no doubt the largest attendance at an annual meeting ever, so large in fact that the event was “sold out.”

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Topics: Manufacturing, Technology, Business

Need a Hacker? Hire One.

Posted by Bill Pollock on Aug 31, 2016 2:07:30 PM

A great deal of news, discussion and time is spent dealing with cyber security.  For a quarter of a century, since the time the internet first became available for commercial use, there have been security issues and computers and accounts have been hacked and their content compromised.  I can remember discussions immediately after 9/11 about the concept that the next great terrorist destruction in the US would be by hacking of infrastructure rather than physically the way the twin towers came down. 

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Topics: Technology, Trends, For Fun

3D Printing and Innovation

Posted by Bill Pollock on Jul 27, 2016 2:23:31 PM

Image Credit: Sam's Club

We hear frequently about 3D printing and all the potential it may have. It’s mind bending to look at how far 3D printing has come and how quickly it is moving, making it essential to stay current with developments in technology. 

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Topics: Technology, Trends

HALT!  Who goes there? Industrial System Security

Posted by Mike Triassi on Jun 14, 2016 1:47:59 PM

Password management gets more important as we access financial websites, corporate portals, and an ever-increasing number of cloud-based resources as part of our online activity. In addition to passwords, it is good to secure personal data such as Social Security numbers and other sensitive information that should be kept out of the wild from identity thieves.   

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Topics: Technology, Trends, Controls, Smart Factory

The Many Applications of Additive Manufacturing

Posted by Steve Beyer on May 31, 2016 2:13:38 PM

Additive Manufacturing (AM) remains a hot topic, offering tremendous benefits to manufacturers, especially for complex parts.  Inroads are being made in newer and more sophisticated applications than previously thought possible by most users. 3-D printing was the domain of small plastic parts, rapid prototyping, and some rapid tooling. Now the technology offers a very wide material set and is on the brink of becoming commonplace. That would however understate the promise that AM offers today's manufacturers. Global names like General Electric (GE AM), Moog (Moog AM), and others are investing into this in a big way with much research and development effort and funds into this promising technology.

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Topics: Mechanical and Process Services, Manufacturing, Technology, Trends

Change Management for Controls Systems with Git

Posted by Mike Triassi on Feb 24, 2016 11:36:39 AM

It is difficult to search software titles for very long without coming across something being sourced by a Git server (such as GitHub).  As the default workflow for over 10 million software developers, coupled with the recent announcement that Google Code is being retired, there seems to be every reason to believe that Git is here to stay.  How can those of us writing software for controls systems take advantage of this tool in our everyday work flow?

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Topics: Technology, Controls

Welcome to the Optimation Blog

Tips, tricks and trends

The goal of this blog is to be helpful to readers by providing useful information about applications in industrial engineering, design and skilled trades, as well as industry knowledge. We're passionate about manufacturing in the United States. We have a little fun with it too.  

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