November 2, 2011

Tractor Beam Techniques - light in motion in industry

DailyTech - NASA Scientists Awarded $100,000 to Analyze Tractor Beam Techniques

"Though a mainstay in science fiction, and Star Trek in particular, laser-based trapping isn't fanciful or beyond current technological know-how," said Stysley. “Current techniques have proven to be largely successful, but they are limited by high costs and limited range and sample rate. An optical-trapping system, on the other hand, could grab desired molecules from the upper atmosphere on an orbiting spacecraft or trap them from the ground or lower atmosphere from a lander. In other words, they could continuously and remotely capture particles over a longer period of time, which would enhance science goals and reduce mission risk." - excerpt from article

No - it's not a manufacturing trend today, but it will become one. Using light to move things - the possibilities are endless (once you actually figure out how to do it, that is)!

Read about more manufacturing business news at Industrial Trends Report home.

October 28, 2011

National Industrial Parks: only you can prevent plant firings!

Business Line : Industry & Economy News : Manufacturing zones will usher in investments, says Muthuraman

Read about this aggressive manufacturing development policy encouraging India's industrial leaders. They recognize that the fastest growing economies in the world depend upon manufacturing sectors that produce over 25% of the country's GDP.

While US government infrastructure funding ideas promote support for temporary construction repair jobs, building infrastructure for manufacturing business may stimulate long-term careers.

Perhaps the US should develop National Industrial Parks like the Forestry Service develops National Parks for recreation. Designate certain areas to build ideal manufacturing conditions - make it within green manufacturing standards, make it environmentally friendly or whatever social agenda necessary to protect legislator's voting base - and provide a manufacturing environment leased to jobs-creating manufacturers that can't invest in the infrastructure required to develop business growth.

Perhaps the government could invest in original facilities construction and sell it off in rent-to-own fashion.

Some will cry that it's the roots of a socialist state, suggesting that this would create and unbalanced advantage for some in the great scheme of Free Trade. Perhaps some guidelines could be established that restrict these industrial renters to export trade only, selling into other world economies that already have skewed "Free Trade" policies.

If the government is going to invest in jobs creation, it may as well be a real investment in real log-term ventures. At least if the government actually builds something with the tax dollars in can avoid fiascos like Solyndra episode that totally wastes the money.

Of course this will be nearly impossible to pass through at a national level because every legislator will insist these National Industrial Parks should be in their own district, but it may be worth discussion.

Read about more manufacturing business news at Industrial Trends Report home.

October 24, 2011

Sound Economy with Jon Talton | U.S. manufacturing at the turning point | Jon Talton | Seattle Times Newspaper

Sound Economy with Jon Talton U.S. manufacturing at the turning point Jon Talton Seattle Times Newspaper

It's at a turning point and it will be pivoting again soon.

Recent manufacturing data released this week indcates that international industrial sectors are slightly improving following a stronger third quarter - which was preceeded by a sluggish Q1 and Q2...

See the trend here? International manufacturing will continue to ebb and flow up and down while this slow economic recovery drags on. All of this unstable industrial activity points to the need for flexible manufacturing styles.
  • Strong supply chain management
  • Outsourced contract manufacturing projects
  • Effective inventory balancing
  • Quick response near-sourced manufacturing operations
All of these manufacturing systems should be the current manufacturing norm, not the exception. Since the need for manufactured goods continues to cycle up and down - sometimes with little obvious reason -  manufacturers can not commit to long-term production objectives. Manufacturing resources like those listed above are crucial to quick response manufacturing methods required of today's unstable manufacturing economy.

Make hay while the sun shines and get out of production before the sun sets on you. That's the current trend.

Read about more manufacturing business trends and news at Industrial Trends Report home.