Technology is continually transforming the way we live and work. Since the foundational concepts of additive manufacturing (AM) were developed approximately thirty years ago, this innovative concept has grown, and is rapidly revolutionizing the production industry. Unimagined processes have become a reality, and companies in aerospace, health, and automotive industries are benefiting from the possibilities. From rapid prototyping to laser engraved net shaping and laminated object manufacturing, this highly specific form of production presents a variety of incredible opportunities.
AM is essentially a very unique type of machine shop production. As such, it forms an integral part of the supply chain, and faces many of the same scheduling challenges associated with traditional machine shop production. Because it allows for unlimited customization and weight-strength optimization, it addresses two important aspects particularly associated with small batch fabrication; and more and more companies are investing in the required machinery. However, trying to maintain your additive manufacturing schedule using manual spreadsheets is almost an operation in futility.