QMT Features: March 2012
MACH 2012 preview
The UK’s premier manufacturing exhibition, MACH 2012, to be held at the NEC Birmingham, 16-20 April 212, looks set to be a vibrant show.

MACH 2012 organisers, the MTA are bullish about next month’s show.  The UK’s largest engineering exhibition, MACH is held every two years at the NEC, Birmingham. The MTA say visitor pre-registration figures are up over 30% on 2010 and includes delegates from over 40 countries. They will not only see the latest in metalcutting, forming and grinding, that has long been at the heart of the exhibition, but will also experience emerging technologies and new processes from a host of world class companies.  From additive manufacturing to industrial laser applications and advanced CAD/CAM to the latest developments in metrology, 3D printing and imaging, MACH has it all.

This year, the exhibition has three new technology zones: the Welding Village, the Abrasives and Grinding Zone and the Engineering and Laser zone. Commenting on the progress of MACH 2012, MTA president Simon Pollard said: "I'm delighted with the progress of MACH and the positive response from visitors to our exciting programme of new features, zones and seminars which has been developed for 2012.  Combined with the buoyant data the MTA has released on engineering output and the capital goods sectors, the 2012 event is poised to be a fitting 100th anniversary for MACH."

For Hexagon Metrology (Stand 5610),  this year’s stand will be its largest ever.  Showing for the first time in the UK will be the Leitz SIRIO SX generation coordinate measuring machine.  The Leitz SIRIO is quicker, more accurate and more robust than ever before.  With PrimeTherm Technology, the Leitz SIRIO SX is thermally stable. PrimeTherm is based on a number of different innovations. The first is the machine body of the Leitz SIRIO SX, which is made from a special temperature-stable material. Secondly, a medium is pumped through the machine body to even out the internal temperatures, dispensing with a climate control system within a temperature range of 15 to 40 degrees Celsius.
Hexagon Metrology will also be showing its large range of metrology products and services and will feature a special interactive area dedicated to Aftermarket, including training, subcontract measurement, and fixturing.

The Bowers Metrology Group (Stand 5810) will be showing its largest ever range of new instruments and distributing copies of the company's new catalogue .
In addition to displaying the company's full range of bore gauges, Bowers' MicroGauge will be making a MACH debut. Designed specifically for the accurate measurement of bores from 1.0 - 6.0 mm, the  compact gauge features a completely new integral digital readout.
Bowers' material testing arm, CV Instruments will be demonstrating a full range of bench hardness testers and portable testers for the measurement of hardness, surface finish, vibration and coating thickness. Group member Baty International will be exhibiting its range of optical-based measuring instruments and gauging products on the Bowers stand.

Renishaw will be exhibiting its range of precision engineering technologies at Mach 2012 . This will include new products, such as Equator -  a radical new alternative to traditional dedicated gauging, filling a gap in the market. Its patented low-cost design, unique in construction and method of operation, is capable of high-speed comparative gauging for inspection of high-volume manufactured parts. It has been developed and proven on the shop-floor in collaboration with industry-leading companies in multiple industries and applications.
Renishaw will highlight for the first time at MACH its range of additive manufacturing technologies. On show will be Renishaw's Laser Melting systems, which utilises a pioneering, additive manufacturing process capable of producing fully dense metal parts direct from 3D CAD, using a high-powered fibre laser. Parts are built from a range of fine metal powders that are fully melted in a tightly controlled atmosphere, in layer thicknesses ranging from 20 to 100 microns.
Taylor Hobson (Stand 5883)  will be demonstrating the company’s ultra-precise surface and form measurement technology. Making a MACH debut will be the advanced Surtronic R100. The  instrument provides a flexible solution to a multitude of roundness and form requirements. Having a variety of fixtures and accessories, the R100 can be tailored to users’ specific needs.
Company staff will be demonstrating products from the portable Surtronic surface roughness range. Ideal for measuring inaccessible areas, the Surtronic 25 boasts a simple menu giving access to the most up-to-date surface roughness parameters. Whilst the Surtronic Duo is a low cost, high quality measuring instrument.
Performing the simultaneous measurement of dimension, form and surface roughness, the Form Talysurf Intra will be exhibited. In addition, the TalyMaster will be demonstrating its high throughput capability and its ability to reduce inspection costs.  This inspection concept combines roughness, roundness and contour in an automated system.

Measurement Solutions (stand 5844. ) under a UK partnership agreement with the Wenzel Group, will be demonstrating the Wenzel exaCT range of CT scanners which provides a solution that is both high performance and extremely cost-effective. The system is aimed directly at everyday scanning applications, such as small castings, plastic parts and so on, where the low value of the part has made CT scanning uneconomic in the past. The small, bench-top design enables the user to have an easy to use scanning system that does not require a large working area, unlike other scanners. All components are housed in one compact system, with a choice of X-ray sources and detectors available to customise the solution to the user’s precise needs. The complete range is based on the same high precision mechanics that are used in traditional Wenzel CMM’s, ensuring high accuracy and stability throughout the range. The X-ray detectors of the new exaCT range have been specifically developed to optimise scanning ability in such a small platform. As an example, the exaCT XS is the newest addition to the range, and is an all-in-one unit that includes a built-in touch screen control panel, a measuring range up to 75mm, and a footprint of only 600 x 500mm.

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