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additive manufacturing

Additive Manufacturing Challenges in the Aviation Industry

In recent years, additive manufacturing (AM) has created a buzz in industries across the world, promising a flexible and cost-effective alternative to traditional manufacturing. One such sector that AM has brought about key transformations is the aviation industry. Additive manufacturing techniques play a pivotal role in aviation companies to reduce costs, increase efficiency, shorten time-to-market, and allow greater design flexibility.

It acts as a vital technique to create complex designs and produce lightweight, yet strong structures. That being said, at present, there are several additive manufacturing challenges that need to be addressed by aviation companies before they go into its widespread adoption in the sector.

Take a look a our recent article to learn why effective pricing strategies are crucial for businesses in the airlines industry. 

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Additive manufacturingAdditive manufacturing challenges in the aviation industry

Inconsistency in quality

Additive manufacturing currently faces several challenges in maintaining quality consistency. This is especially true in the case of the production of fully dense metal parts. Several aviation experts have also been raising concerns over the repeatability of the existing additive manufacturing systems. Also, the current AM systems are believed to offer accuracy of only approximately 30-40 microns. This is one of the critical challenges of additive manufacturing in the aviation industry as this does not align with the quality tolerance standards of aerospace companies. Consequently, some additive manufacturing parts require additional work after they are printed. This hurts the efficiency and purpose of AM.

Large and odd-sized parts

Another key challenge of additive manufacturing in the aviation industry is the inability to manufacture large and odd parts, making the production of certain large aircraft components difficult. This is one of the key areas where additive manufacturing underperforms when compared to traditional manufacturing.

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High material costs

AM technology uses only a small quantity of polymers and metal powder for the production of aircraft parts. However, these come at a much higher price when compared to the materials that are generally used in traditional manufacturing. This, in turn, lowers the incentive to use additive manufacturing in the aviation industry. This challenge must be addressed by AM providers by identifying alternative materials that can bring down the production costs.

Scalability limitations

Traditional manufacturing and sourcing techniques often help companies to stock large quantities of inventory for unforeseen contingencies. But in the case of AM, it may not be possible to scale up production in case there is a sudden surge in demand. As this scenario is highly likely in the aviation sector, scalability becomes one of the biggest challenges of additive manufacturing in the sector. Several additive manufacturing providers are already working on this challenge by enhancing the production speed of AM systems.

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Future of Manufacturing in Europe: Key Forces That Will Drive Growth and Profitability

Europe’s 2020 agenda for digitization and Horizon 2020 plan for R&D funding are significant initiatives to facilitate a more sustained and competitive economy. These long term strategies will eventually trickle down to the manufacturing sector and play a significant role in the future of manufacturing in Europe. The manufacturing sector currently accounts for nearly 15% of Europe’s GDP and will play a significant role in their long-term economic development. In this blog, experts at Infiniti explore some of the key forces that will drive transformation in the future of manufacturing in Europe and disrupt their manufacturing sphere.

The European manufacturing sector holds tremendous opportunities, but these opportunities also comes with a host of challenges especially for players who are new to the market. Request a free proposal to know how our industry experts can help you stay abreast of the challenges in the European manufacturing space and capitalize on the right opportunities to improve profitability.

Future of Manufacturing in Europe

Future of manufacturingNearshoring in Eastern Europe

Although Western Europe is often considered the hub for manufacturing activities, Central and Eastern European countries including Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Czech Republic are expected to become pivots for manufacturing innovation. The easy availability of cash grants and tax incentives, and the accessibility of skilled researchers are some of the key factors enabling this shift.

Rise of industry 4.0

With large sums of money being allocated as a part of the Horizon 2020 R&D funding program, we can expect significant advancements in computing, sensor technologies, and robotics in the future of manufacturing in Europe. If this becomes a reality, the future of manufacturing in Europe will not be far from achieving the vision of connected enterprises.

Carbon neutral manufacturing processes

The growing climate change and carbon emission concerns are putting pressure on manufacturing companies around the world to resort to more eco-friendly production processes. From a manufacturing industry standpoint, it is vital to optimize current energy consumption in the plant and focus on electricity from renewable sources. Moreover, the EU plans to reduce 40% of its carbon and greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. As a result, we can expect to see several top manufacturing companies embracing the concept of carbon-neutral processes in the future of manufacturing.

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Demand for highly-skilled workforce

The demand for low-skilled manufacturing jobs is on a steady decline. The future of manufacturing in Europe will soon undergo a structural shift as a result of rising demand for highly skilled and efficient workforce. Human-centric factories will become a reality that encompasses attributes such as dynamic work environments, skill development, and factories aligned to social environments.

Disruption of nanotechnology

Nanotechnology is one of the key enabling technologies in Europe’s Horizon 2020 plan. This will proliferate new opportunities in sectors such as food and beverage, where non-scale polymers can be used to prevent oxygen from spoiling the food. This also means that companies in the manufacturing sector will soon be focusing on the use of nanotechnology in their production and packaging process to enhance the output.

Energy and geopolitics

From a political standpoint, an important talking point is the lifting of the Iran Sanctions, and Russia and China coming together due to the economic climate in both countries. As a result, there was a cheaper dumping of goods, as was seen with the steel industry. Iran will provide more of a growth opportunity when compared to Russia and China, with certain sectors including aviation and automotive expected to see opportunities galore.

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Infiniti’s Inventory Forecasting Solution Helped an Industrial Equipment Manufacturer to Reduce Operational Cost by 27%

Inventory Forecasting Solution for an Industrial Equipment Manufacturer

Leading players in the industrial equipment manufacturing sector are facing predicaments such as lack of insight into the supply chain, resource management issues, and engineering challenges. Moreover, with rising market competition and increasing technological advancements in the industry, industrial equipment manufacturing companies are pressurized to invest in technology and fulfill customers’ demands by accurately managing inventory requirements. Consequently, industrial equipment manufacturers are partnering with firms like Infiniti Research to leverage their expertise in offering inventory forecasting solution.

Are you facing challenges in accurately forecasting the inventory requirements for your organization? If yes, our inventory forecasting solution can help. Request for a FREE proposal today!

Business Challenge

The client is a European industrial equipment manufacturer and supplier. The client’s unstructured approach to inventory management hugely impacted the company’s overall sales rate. This even increased churn rate by 27%. Subsequently, the company witnessed a huge dip in their profit margin and started losing market share to their competitors. The client, therefore, realized the need to leverage inventory forecasting solution and approached the experts at Infiniti Research. With Infiniti’s inventory forecasting solution, they wanted to reduce inventory errors, better plan supply chain requirements, and efficiently allocate resources.

Other challenges faced by the industrial equipment manufacturer were:

Industrial equipment manufacturer challenge #1

Inadequate inventory planning– The industrial equipment manufacturer was facing challenges in planning the inventory operations and efficiently supplying industrial machinery according to the market demand. The lack of insights into the supply chain was one of the reasons behind this. Therefore, the industrial equipment manufacturer wanted to leverage Infiniti’s inventory forecasting solution to better plan their inventory operations.

Industrial equipment manufacturer challenge #2

Resource management – The constant change in the demand for industrial machinery made it challenging for the industrial equipment manufacturer to efficiently manage their workforce. This even impacted the company’s bottom line. The client, therefore, wanted to forecast the demand for products in advance and better manage the workforce.

Industrial equipment manufacturer challenge #3

Customer experience management – By leveraging Infiniti’s inventory forecasting solution, the industrial equipment manufacturer wanted to reduce risk in supply chain operations and keep inventories optimized. By doing so, the industrial equipment manufacturer wanted to reduce the churn rate in the company and attract new customers.

Solutions Offered

The experts at Infiniti Research followed a three-phased approach to inventory forecasting. In the initial phase, the experts analyzed in detail in the equipment manufacturing industry in Europe and identified regulations and changes that impact the business operations. The next phase involved analyzing the sales rate of the top industrial manufacturers in Europe. This phase of the inventory forecasting engagement helped the client to understand the peak periods for industrial machinery. In the last phase, the experts identified constraints that impede the production process of the company.

With the insights obtained from Infiniti’s inventory forecasting solution, the client was able to streamline their supply chain structure to meet the evolving market demand. Also, by analyzing factors impeding the production process, the industrial equipment manufacturer was able to make informed business decisions and understand the spikes and dips in machinery demand. Furthermore, the industrial equipment supplier was able to increase revenue opportunities and reduce inefficiency.

Within a short period of eight months, the industrial equipment manufacturer was able to better plan the supply chain, efficiently allocate resources, and manage customers’ needs and requirements. In addition, the industrial equipment manufacturer was able to enhance the sales rate and reduce operational cost by 27%.

Infiniti’s inventory forecasting solution has helped various global players to improve sales and operational planning. CONTACT US to know how our inventory forecasting solution can help your organization.

Top Challenges Facing Industrial Equipment Manufacturers

Top Challenges Facing Industrial Equipment Manufacturers

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