Cohort spotlight: JITbase

The mission: “Solve the CNC machinist shortage while increasing your machine uptime” Manufacturers operate busy shop floors – by directing optimal pathways for operators, they can boost production and make the most of the time they have. “We believe that a CNC machine should never be stopped,” says Frederic Scherer, CEO, JITbase. “This is why, in the context of the labour shortage, we seek to make the interaction between humans and machines as efficient as possible.” The problem we’re addressing  Skilled staff shortages have long been an issue for manufacturers. But the pressures to increase production have not gone away.  “Our industry has dealt with a shortage of skilled labour for a decade now,” says Frederic. “In a typical factory one operator is assigned to each CNC machine. When using JITbase, the software helps the operator know where to go and when. So one operator can be responsible for many machines.” What we do JITbase offers a software solution that enables manufacturers to boost productivity by reading data coming from Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines in any factory. JITbase’s optimal path system finds the optimal path for each operator. “The optimal path means the optimal sequence of manual operations that operators have to perform on different machines, in order to increase overall machine uptime,” says Frederic. “Operators tend to go to the first machine that stops, while it can be more efficient to prioritise another machine that stops a few minutes later, but can then run lights-out after a short human intervention." Our history  Frédéric worked for several years at Air Liquide in continuous improvement where he experienced the transition to Industry 4.0 from a large industrial group. He founded JITbase to facilitate this transition, for large companies as well as manufacturing SMEs. Interesting fact about JITbase  JITbase started as a digital work instruction tool for knowledge sharing. As the company got its first customers in the aerospace industry who were striving to find solutions to fight the machinist shortage, JITbase collaborated with them to finally pivot and focus a new product known as OPS today. What we hope to get from Sixth Sense  “The Sixth Sense program is the perfect opportunity for us and Hexagon to collaborate, learn from each other and accelerate the introduction of new Smart Manufacturing solutions. We hope to use this experience to leverage our and Hexagon’s respective strengths and release an offering that helps the industry address enduring challenges.”  

By |January 19th, 2023|

Cohort spotlight: 3YOURMIND

The mission “We automate on-demand manufacturing” 3YOURMIND promises manufacturers “your parts, one click away.”  In a world where many parts used in manufacturing can be created by 3D printing, 3YourMind enables companies to create their own parts on-site, source them externally, or indeed check to see if more of their parts can be created on-demand. “Additive manufacturing is truly a team sport,” says 3YOURMIND’s senior business development manager William Cuervo. “With our 3D printing part identification solution consolidating workflow steps, we can help customers save enormous amounts of time and promote the closest point of use, on-demand production, to help overcome supply chain issues.”  The problem we’re addressing  Supply chain issues can significantly slow down operations when people need new parts. It’s an issue that has been magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Suez Canal obstruction and the war in Ukraine – but it is nothing new.  “The reality is we've always had supply chain issues. The only difference is that a global pandemic happened and everyone became exposed to the topic,” explains William. “So the reality is we will continue having supply chain issues – companies leveraging smarter manufacturing and procurement practices will be able to reduce the impact of these. Reducing reliance on offshoring manufacturing and bringing things closer to home is sensible.” On-demand manufacturing also saves on costs –3YOURMIND saves 30% on operational costs. Not only are on-demand parts cheaper to create, they can also keep older machines working for longer by providing parts. “We can avoid the need for costly new machines,” adds William.  What we do The end-to-end on-demand manufacturing solution helps companies to identify and produce parts when and where they are needed. The software analyses part data to ensure the best business case for on-demand production throughout the entire product lifecycle. 3YOURMIND can support part screening, digital inventory management and quality management.  “When identifying parts for on-demand manufacturing, we help identify five times as many more use cases, and we cut the qualification time in half,” says William. “So we know we're helping you identify and qualify parts at a rapid rate getting those parts ordered internally and or externally. This, in turn, increases the utilisation of the machines by 130%.” Our history  Co-founders Aleksander Ciszek and Stephan Kühr 3YOURMIND  launched in 2014 as a 3D part ordering marketplace. Since then, 3YOURMIND has grown to offer a software platform that captures the full additive manufacturing value chain by helping customers identify, qualify, order, and produce parts Over the years, 3YOURMIND has been selected for numerous awards, including winning the 2016 Formnext Startup Challenge and recognition of CEO Aleksander Ciszek in Forbes Europe’s 2018 ‘30 Under 30’ list.   Interesting fact about 3YourMind In March of 2022, 3YOURMIND partnered with other members of the 3D printing community to launch the ‘Stand With Ukraine’ initiative to support Ukrainian humanitarian and defense efforts. The 3YOURMIND platform enables 3D makers to print critical parts, like tourniquets, from anywhere in the world and deliver them to Ukrainian aid

By |January 16th, 2023|

Sixth Sense: a year in open innovation

Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence launched the Sixth Sense open innovation platform in January 2022. Our goal is to create an ecosystem bringing scaling start-ups together with some of the world’s biggest companies, to turn real-world problems into transformative solutions and share valuable resources. The Sixth Sense platform aims to take start-ups with advanced tech from minimum viable product to global commercialisation, leading the way for innovation in the smart manufacturing space. We invite proposals from scaling start-ups and set specific challenges based on the pressing demands our customers are facing. In return, participating companies get access to our technology, world-beating data and our customers. Milan Kocić, head of Sixth Sense for Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, said: “Sixth Sense will build a bridge between small businesses and larger manufacturers, helping overcome start-ups’ challenges with scaling, while simultaneously meeting the industry’s need for new ideas.”   First cohort The first Sixth Sense pitch day took place in March, where we heard from 13 passionate and ambitious innovators working on potentially transformative solutions in the smart manufacturing space. The quality of the pitches gave our panel of expert judges a difficult task in choosing just seven. Still, after much deliberation, we selected our first cohort of scaling start-ups IconPro, SmartUQ, Eyeflow AI, Praemo, SmartParts, SMARTPM and RIIICO. For two months, the companies underwent an intensive innovate-on-the-job program. They collaborated with the Hexagon MI team to develop the projects they were going to introduce on the Demo Day and worked with our team of experts, coaches and mentors to refine their business plans, pitches and technology. On 25 May, the first cohort gathered in Tobacco Dock in London for the first Sixth Sense Demo Day. The start-ups presented their ideas to an advisory board of industry experts to secure Hexagon's support in bringing their product or service to a global audience. The three winners were: RIIICO – a software and AI company aiming to transform the manufacturing industry by delivering cutting edge, interactive digital twins of factories. SmartParts – the start-up that is working on the integrated solution combining materials, hardware and software to connect manufacturing data to additive materials and parts. Praemo – the company building Razor™ — an analytics engine combining industry expertise with AI and the IIoT to predict and prevent disruption to operations. The program had a tremendously positive effect on the progress of our first alums. Highlights from other members of the cohort since include:  Eyeflow.AI have launched a new and unique product that has found a niche in the market through the inspection of stamped metals.  SMARTPM's Metaflex product family has been selected as one of the top 3 innovative solutions in the Metal Madrid Exhibition. Their MIC automation platform has won Most Innovative Industry 4.0 solution in the BIEMH22 out of more than 100 other candidates.  SmartUQ has signed up eight new customers and ten new resellers across the globe.   Second Cohort In July, Sixth Sense announced its second challenge, aimed at advanced

By |December 21st, 2022|

Cohort spotlight: Teratonics

The mission: “To reveal the invisible in the workflow” Teratonics offers innovative solutions for contactless non-destructive testing and imaging inside materials like plastics or composites and on coated surfaces. The non-hazardous technology reveals invisible, structural defects and can simultaneously control the dimensions in a very fast way - in production cycle time.  “This immediate insight into produced parts is a game changer for industrial quality and process control. It’s part of the answer to the economic and ecological challenges that we face nowadays,” says co-founder and CEO, Uli Schmidhammer. “Defective parts and non-optimized fabrication processes cost time and money, they waste raw materials and energy.” The problem we’re addressing  Advanced materials and processes are increasingly being introduced in manufacturing, often to help lightweight transport with reduced CO2 footprint and make designs more sustainable.  With greater manufacturing complexity, however, comes an increase in the probability of defects. At the same time, stringent governmental regulations and companies’ own standards demand to keep defects to a minimum.  “The later a defect or dimensional deviation is discovered, the more expensive it becomes.” says Schmidhammer. “The latest recalls of 100 thousand of vehicles from established car manufactures just illustrate the visible top of the iceberg of the poor-quality cost, An immediate control of the internal structure equals reduce the cost of producing defective parts that represents an average 5% of the revenues of a company and even up to 20% of plastics industries.” What we do  Teratonics enables such immediate insights, also into large objects, with an innovative approach of Non-Destructive Testing. The technology uses the last part of the electromagnetic spectrum to be industrially exploited.  “The terahertz frequency range allows contactless and harmless analysis inside dielectric materials and on hidden metallic surfaces," says Xavier Neiers, CTO of Teratonics.  “Our internationally patented approach is a breakthrough in speed and stability for pulsed terahertz. As a result, depth resolved imaging of internal structures becomes possible in the production cycle time of many industries. For many applications, this inline imaging capacity is a unique feature in the NDT market at large.” Our history  Teratonics was created 2017 by Xavier Neiers and Uli Schmidhammer to reply to the industrial need of quality control in the workflow that can trigger automated reactions and to reduce in this way the costs of poor and good quality. The company leverages 10 years of academic research at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Université Paris-Saclay and CNRS. Interesting fact about Teratonics As it often occurs for breakthrough innovation, Teratonics’ disruption to the THz sector was brought from outside the field. “I was working as a researcher on a project for fundamental science, on the diagnostic for a particle accelerator.” Uli remembers. “We found a very effective detector and we quickly saw its potential value for the emerging THz sector.  “A valorisation project was started by the research institute, including business development. Stimulated by the positive industrial feedback we received, we took the decision to create a company.” What we hope from

By |December 15th, 2022|

Cohort spotlight: Castor

Meet Castor  The mission: “To optimise manufacturing – automatically identifying suitable parts for additive manufacturing”  Manufacturing is evolving quickly and additive manufacturing offers many benefits to businesses. “We enable people to quickly check whether it is beneficial for them to move over to this and, if so, how,” says Angeliki Malizou, Castor.   The problem we’re addressing  Cost reduction, supply chain hurdles and sustainability are some of the most pressing issues facing the manufacturing industry. Additive manufacturing can help companies to address some of these issues – helping them to get parts quicker and easier, helping to lightweight parts where possible and creating parts which produce less waste. But it’s hard to know exactly where to start. “A company might be using thousands of individual parts, how do they know which ones are suitable for 3D printing? They don’t have time to go through and check each one,” says Malizou.  What we do  Castor can automatically analyse thousands of parts at one time. Customers just need to upload their CAD files and the software uses advanced algorithms to analyse the files, providing an interactive report with insights and recommendations.  “With our software, manufacturers can overcome a range of challenges by automatically identifying which parts are best suited to being 3D printed, what the economic and CO2 reduction benefits would be, and how to shift to inventory reduction and on-demand manufacturing,” says Malizou.  Our history  Long-time friends, Omer Blaier and Elad Schiller founded Castor in 2017 having studied at Tel Aviv University and The Hebrew University in Jerusalem respectively. In 2018, the company found investment from Tel Aviv University’s academic-based venture fund, TAU Ventures.  Interesting fact about Castor  Castor has 27 employees but its most surprising member of the team is Lechem, the loyal dog mascot, whose name means “bread” in Hebrew. “Seeing him around keeps inspiring and focusing us on our mission,” says Galit Cohen, Castor. “One of our favourite sayings is ‘we are given the ingredients for our daily bread but expected to do the baking’.”  What we hope from Sixth Sense  “We applied for Sixth Sense because we heard very positive things about the platform, and as a company always welcome opportunities to collaborate with different experts and be exposed to new perspectives,” says Malizou. “We believe that our capabilities are complementary to those of Hexagon, and we see this as an excellent opportunity to join forces and ease manufacturers’ adoption of, and transition into, additive manufacturing. Even just a few weeks in, we’ve been opened up to new tools we can use to help convey our offering – we’re excited to see what comes next.”  

By |December 12th, 2022|

Cohort spotlight: Threedy

The mission “Rethink industrial 3D” Threedy’s goal is to simplify the availability of industrial 3D data to leverage its true value.  By abstracting the complexity of the 3D/XR domain, Threedy’s technology enables customers to build even the most complex industrial applications – directly leveraging full quality CAD or construction data.  This creates totally new possibilities to exploit the real value of 3D data throughout the entire value chain, in a new way, making it accessible to everyone and anywhere. Threedy’s data-driven, end-to-end solution for scalable visual computing enables the hyperconnectivity required in the industrial space for a wide range of application scenarios, platforms, and devices to enable Digital Twins or Industrial Metaverse implementations.  The problem  Complex 3D data is the foundation of successful engineering in the industry. But the data is not easily available  – sharing ideas with colleagues and clients, bringing most complex data to the shopfloor or utilising it for remote maintenance scenarios – has always been cumbersome.  “Companies working with complex 3D data are always faced with decisions like size or type of data, compute distribution or data conversion pipelines to finally use 2D pixel streams or flat pictures to clients’ devices like smartphones, so they’re moving data from A to B,” says Stefan Domdey, Threedy. “We virtualise the data and compute, therefore enabling output-sensitive solutions.”  What we do  Threedy offers visual computing technology as an infrastructure component to enable large scale and complex 3D data.  “We enable really complex data anywhere,” says Domdey. “So that our clients can build their own custom 3D apps while respecting the single-source-of-truth of their data. Data virtualisation and the computing of that data with  uploads to the cloud or other platforms are not necessary anymore!” In modern IT and software landscapes, industrial 3D data and applications are often considered foreign bodies requiring special treatment as a result of the enormous interdependency and complexity of data size, algorithms, and device capabilities. “For manufacturing, 3D data is currently stuck in the engineering process,” he says. “With our infrastructure component, we give companies the chance to harness 3D data’s true value – leveraging complex datasets throughout the entire value chain – which increases productivity and introduces cost savings on a number of fronts.” Our history  Threedy was spun-off from a German research institute, Fraunhofer IGD, where the team was built over the course of almost ten years.  “The technology was part of several projects with various industrial customers,” explains Domday. “When BMW issued a tender asking for a technology to enable complex 3D in a browser. The team from Fraunhofer IGD used previous software generations of today’s instant3Dhub to win this tender to set the foundation of today’s technology and company. “So, BMW was the very, very first customer and of course the automotive industry is pretty small, people started talking about us and saw that there was value in the technology and a uniqueness to the approach.” While it grew out of automotive, Threedy also works with the process industry and with

By |December 7th, 2022|
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