Frank W. Pereira, brand manager, GM Advanced Technology Vehicles, estimates that within 10 years, 25% of the vehicle market may be electric vehicle (EV) type units. While some other observers seem to think that number is a bit on the high side, prevailing environmental concerns, which are leading to both legislation and consumer awareness, seem to point in the direction of changing the status quo of an internal combustion powered-fleet on the streets and highways not only in the U.S., but around the world. Here's a look at how some companies are addressing EVs.
Several years back, one of the authors visited a major North American assembly plant engaged in the launch of a new vehicle program. A "ramp-up" schedule was prominently displayed on a bulletin board deep in the heart of the plant. The schedule indicated that the day of the visit was the same day the plant was originally planned to achieve full capacity production of its new product. Yet the plant was actually producing only a few units an hour! The assembly plant's tardiness is certainly not uncommon, but did contribute to our interest in the wide range in vehicle launch performance across major vehicle firms.
It's not enough, Al Power suggests, for a supplier company to just have good manufacturing capabilities. Continuous improvement requires product improvements, as well. So Decoma is positioning itself to have both resources for competitive advantage.
The people at Denso determined that they needed a better means to put more information on labels used for tasks ranging from manufacturing to logistics, so they developed one: the QR Code.
Shifting alliances, the continued encapsulation of engineering expertise, and the drive to reduce the complexity of today's computer-aided design (CAD) systems are just some of the latest milestones on the path toward solids modeling becoming the de facto design engineering tool.
For years, machine tool makers claimed their machines could work at higher speeds, if only cutting tools could perform effectively. Advances in cutting tool materials and technology seem to have evened the score. But who is the fastest?