Early in my career, an inventor came to my office to talk about patenting his invention. After I advised him about having a patentability search conducted and then explained all that is involved in preparing and prosecuting a patent application, he had one question: “When can I make some money on this?”
Industry 4.0, also known as the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), is proving to be a revolutionary trend that will shape the industrial landscape in the coming years. Adding intelligence to physical objects has never been as easy and inexpensive as it is today.
The most common of these thin-film vacuum coating processes include evaporation (e.g., using a cathodic arc or thermal technique), ion beam deposition, and sputtering (e.g., using plasmas). All PVD coating processes must occur inside a vacuum chamber so that the vaporized materials do not react with any atmospheric contaminants that could interfere with the microscopic layer of coating, or with the adhesion of the growing thin film to the substrate.
Drying is a necessary step in the processing of all ceramic products and components, whether it takes place as a separate step or is a preliminary step in the firing process. Ceramics are made from different combinations of materials that can be in slurry form or even more liquid, in the case of slip-cast ware at the start of the fabrication process.
Many processed materials need to be thermally dried under controlled conditions. Most drying is done in open atmosphere or oxidizing ovens in batch, continuous belt, or tunnel feed styles. However, certain materials require protection from oxygen or other atmospheric contaminants during or after drying.
August always seems to be such a chaotic month in our household. Between home improvement projects, vacation schedules, and back-to-school plans, it can be difficult to limit our focus and prioritize what’s really needed vs. what would be nice or fun to do. Everything that needs to be taken care of is important to a certain extent (the lawn isn’t going to mow itself!), but what if the weather’s beautiful and the kids want to go to the pool? The sheer volume of options can become overwhelming.