Introducing: Holistic Build Analysis for Automated Production Scheduling
02 August 2018
Accurately predicting the capacity of your machine builds is a vital part of the production planning process for additive manufacturing. And yet, it’s an aspect of additive production that remains challenging for manufacturers. What is the most efficient way to prioritise and schedule production jobs whilst also evaluating how cost-effective a part will be to produce?
Introducing Holistic Build Analysis
At AMFG, we’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what kind of tool manufacturers could use to help their production teams better optimise their production scheduling processes. Failing to do so at this stage of the additive manufacturing process will, inevitably, lead to inefficiencies along the production workflow.
Until now, the primary method manufacturers use to determine the capacity of their builds has been through nesting. However, nesting software offers an iterative solution, requiring users to set time limits or an ideal density capacity before the nesting process is completed. Inevitably, running nesting software in the background is a time-consuming process that can take days or even hours to complete.
That’s why we’ve developed a new tool that allows manufacturers to instantly estimate how full a machine build is — without the need for nesting. We’ve called this tool Holistic Build Analysis, as it uses machine learning technology to produce accurate estimations of your build almost instantly.
While nesting is an integral part of the additive production process, helping to optimise build space for production, it is not the most efficient way to estimate your machine build capacity or generate cost analysis and estimations.
Our Holistic Build Analysis tool is just the latest addition to our production management software. With the new feature, you can easily assign parts to a build, after which our system will generate estimates of the build’s fill rate almost instantly, so you know exactly how much space is left.
Benefits of Holistic Build Analysis
1. Save time and prioritise jobs
Predicting the fill rate of your machine builds in a matter of seconds, instead of hours, has obvious time-saving benefits. Not only can you speed up the production planning process, but you can also prioritise the parts that need to be manufactured first. Holistic Build Analysis helps you achieve just this: our machine learning technology takes into consideration key factors such as machine availability and production deadlines, so you can efficiently schedule projects and run an streamlined additive production operation.
2. Reduce production costs
Optimising the production process at the planning stage not only has a beneficial time-saving impact, but it also helps to reduce production costs by enabling you to allocate the correct resources to your production facility at the right time. Our build analysis tool has been developed by this need in mind: by factoring in key variables like deadlines and the optimal arrangement of parts, production teams can significantly optimise their production scheduling, make judgements on which parts to manufacture next and pack builds based on a variety of factors. Not only this, but with solid cost estimations, you can determine which production jobs are the most cost-effective to produce.
3. Grow and scale
One of our goals at AMFG is to ensure that our customers enjoy a fully streamlined and scalable additive manufacturing process. As 3D printing technology continues to be adopted by manufacturers across industries, operational procedures and systems must be equipped to handle the inevitable growth of AM operations. With Holistic Build Analysis and the rest of AMFG’s workflow automation software, we make it a priority to ensure that our software can grow with the expansion of your operations, no matter what stage of the additive manufacturing process you’re at.
A New Way to Automate Production Scheduling
We believe that Holistic Build Analysis is a major milestone towards automated production planning for additive manufacturing. As our machine learning technology continues to improve, auto-scheduling will be a key way to ensure maximum efficiency for the additive manufacturing process.
And as this new release is only the first phase of our build analysis tool, we’ve allowed you to bypass the system’s estimates and manually fill in your estimates. Our system uses this data to continuously improve its estimates, becoming ever-more accurate over time. In time, Holistic Build Analysis will even be able to suggest which parts should be produced next, bringing manufacturers another step closer to a fully automated production process for additive manufacturing.
Learn more about our workflow automation solution for end-part production