Nadine Powell Earns National Award for Contributions to Manufacturing Industry

headshot (1)Buffalo, NY – EWI is pleased to announce that The Manufacturing Institute has named Nadine Powell as a 2016 STEP Ahead Emerging Leader. This national honor celebrates women in the manufacturing industry that are making a difference through advocacy, mentorship, engagement, promotion, and leadership.

Nadine joined Buffalo Manufacturing Works to lead business development efforts in December 2014 and has extensive knowledge of advanced manufacturing in Western New York and the needs of local manufacturers.

“Nadine has made a real impact on the successful launch of Buffalo Manufacturing Works in 2015 through her deep knowledge of manufacturers needs across multiple industries,” said Michael Ulbrich, EWI’s President of NY Operations. “She has immersed herself in technical details, seeking guidance from more senior technical staff and staying abreast of technical trends and developments.”

EWI CEO and President Henry Cialone agrees. “Nadine’s deep industry knowledge has allowed her to position herself and the organization as a thought leader. Her willingness to help and customer-driven approach earned her the respect of her colleagues in a very short period of time. We are proud that she is being recognized nationally for her contributions to our industry.”

The 2016 STEP Ahead Awards will take place on April 21 at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C.

Buffalo Manufacturing Works, a world-class resource for advanced manufacturing operated by EWI, is part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion initiative. Since opening its doors in April 2015, it has nearly doubled its full-time staff to 14 people. For career information and job openings at Buffalo Manufacturing Works, visit the careers page: www.buffalomanufacturingworks.com/about/careers/

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About EWI

EWI is the leading engineering and technology organization in North America dedicated to developing, testing, and implementing advanced manufacturing technologies for industry. Since 1984, EWI has offered applied research, manufacturing support, and strategic services to leaders in the aerospace, automotive, consumer electronic, medical, energy, government and defense, and heavy manufacturing sectors. By matching our expertise to the needs of forward-thinking manufacturers, our technology team serves as a valuable extension of our clients’ innovation and R&D teams to provide premium, game-changing solutions that deliver a competitive advantage in the global marketplace. To learn more, visit www.ewi.org, email info@ewi.org, or call 614.688.5000.

About Buffalo Manufacturing Works

Buffalo Manufacturing Works, operated by EWI, helps innovation-driven organizations across North America excel by partnering with their internal manufacturing, engineering and R&D teams to deliver better products, grow, and compete. Located on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus in downtown Buffalo, the facility houses state-of-the-art equipment to facilitate applied R&D projects with members, as well as a team specializing in three primary technology focus areas: Flexible Automation, Additive Manufacturing, and Machining & Finishing. For more information, visit www.buffalomanufacturingworks.com.

About the Buffalo Billion

With Governor Cuomo’s commitment to invest $1 billion in the Buffalo area economy, which is designed to spur significantly greater private investment and create thousands of new, sustainable jobs, New York State is helping the Buffalo area to realize immediate economic growth to put “generation now” back to work while setting the foundation for sustainable economic opportunity for future generations. The Western New York Regional Economic Development Council – a top economic development plan award winner – will play a key role in how the funding is used to support the expansion of local companies and how to target the attraction of new businesses across the country and around the globe to come to Buffalo. To learn more about the Buffalo Billion, visit www.buffalobillion.ny.gov.

Infographic—Advantages of EWI Membership

At Buffalo Manufacturing Works, and across all EWI locations, we develop, mature, and deploy manufacturing technologies to help companies compete. We offer membership to provide companies with a portal to new potential and possibilities. As a member, organizations gain direct access to our team of experts, technical capabilities, resources, and more. With facilities here in Buffalo, and our headquarters in Columbus, OH, we’re just around the corner.

We’ve created an infographic to showcase all the great benefits of membership, including:

  • Direct access to our engineers for technical support
  • Free Design Reviews
  • Library Services
  • And more

If you’d like to learn more about membership with EWI, please give us a call at (716) 710-5500 or send us an email.

Additive Manufacturing is Measuring Up in Buffalo

Additive manufacturing (AM) is more than one single technology. Rather, it is comprised of multiple complementary technologies that provide manufacturers with an array of choices regarding surface finish, component size, efficiency, and overall quality. Each technology has unique requirements regarding, design, materials, processing, and finishing. The quality of built components is dependent on a variety of factors, many of which can be characterized through available measurement technologies. In Buffalo, EWI’s investment in precision measurement technologies supports the entire AM process chain, from powder characterization of new materials to metrology and surface characterization for final inspection.

Powder Characterization
Many metal AM processes utilize powders of various sizes in either a powder-bed or powder-delivered approach. The size, size distribution, shape, and chemical composition of these powders largely determine final part quality. To quantify these powder characteristics, EWI employs multiple measurement and testing technologies.

Laser Diffraction
The Beckman Coulter LS 13 320 MW, a laser diffraction particle size analyzer, uses polarization intensity differential scattering to characterize the powder size and distribution in a sample. This system can rapidly analyze a range of particle sizes from 0.017µm to 2000µm in under two minutes.

Scanning Electron Microscopy
EWI’s Hitachi S-3700 Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) is equipped with a large chamber with variable pressure to image and analyze conductive as well as non-conductive materials. This system can accommodate samples up to 12 inches wide and 4 inches high. Energy-dispersive x-ray (EDX) spectroscopy and electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) analysis allow elemental and quantitative microstructural analysis. Figure 1 shows the results from several powder analyses, illustrating various sizes, shapes, and defects.

Scanning Electron Microscopy
EWI continues to evaluate powder characterization technologies and will be investing in a gas pycnometer, a hall flowmeter, and powder analyzers to characterize powder flow rate, flowability, agglomeration, and caking.

Metrology and Surface Characterization
Surface areal topography is an emerging non-contact form of metrology capable of simultaneously measuring the roughness and form of a surface. These 3D topographies are particularly useful to optimize the form and roughness of 3D-printed parts, perform in-line inspection for in-situ process optimization, characterize tool wear, provide forensic evaluation for failure analyses, and validate sealing surfaces. Several techniques are available to make these measurements, each with its own strengths and weaknesses.

Using the Wave Nature of Light
Both the Bruker Coherence Scanning Interferometry System and the Novacam Fiber-based Coherence Scanning Interferometer use the wave nature of light to measure surface topography. As light travels towards and reflects off a surface, it acquires a phase corresponding to the distance the light has traveled. By using interference to measure this phase, precise height measurements can be achieved. The Bruker system uses this method to achieve an impressive 1 nm z-resolution and can measure a 2 mm x 2 mm area in 10 seconds. The Novacam system uses this technique to measure single data points at 30 kHz at a lower z-resolution of 200 nm. It can also use an optical fiber to measure hard-to-reach areas.

Focus-variation-based Measurement
The Alicona focus-variation-based system offers another method to precisely measure height. This optical system scans through the focal range while simultaneously monitoring which features are in focus. Using this method, the height of each feature can be calculated. This scanning mechanism offers a faster method of measuring area than the Bruker and can measure rougher surfaces, but is less precise. Figure 2 illustrates the surface topography of a part built with EWI’s EOS laser powder bed system. The top surface of this part is roughly 22 mm x 46 mm. Both form and roughness are visible in this 3D representation of the topographic image.

Focus-variation-based Measurement

Each measurement system has strengths, weaknesses, and ideal applications. We work with customers to identify optimal measurement solutions for their specific applications and are continuing to grow our metrology capability and expertise. For example, EWI recently purchased two computed tomography (CT) systems from Nikon to complement our existing capabilities and provide the ability to scan external features, as well as internal features, structures, and defects. This capability is particularly useful for AM applications that utilize internal design features for conformal cooling and light-weighting. CT can also be used as a quality inspection tool for final verification of AM components.

About the Authors
Alex Kitt
 is a member of the EWI flexible manufacturing team at Buffalo Manufacturing Works in Western New York. His specialty is automation, including discrete event simulations, robotic simulation, robot programming, control, and human-collaborative robotics. Alex has additional expertise in nondestructive examination and inspection using optical techniques, and contributes to several focus areas at our Buffalo facility including machining/finishing and materials/testing.

Kenny Kort is a Project Engineer in EWI’s AM and materials testing and characterization (MTC) groups. Based at EWI’s Buffalo Manufacturing Works facility, he is responsible for the operation of the Arcam A2X electron beam melting (EBM) 3D printer, ExOne Innovent binder jetting 3D printer, Beckman Coulter LS 13 320 MW particle analyzer, and Hitachi S-3700N ultra large chamber variable pressure scanning electron microscope.

Learn More
To learn more about additive manufacturing in Buffalo contact Alex Kitt at akitt@ewi.org or 716.710.5560, or Kenny Kort at kkort@ewi.org or 716.710.5545.