Conference Sessions

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    Day One — Tuesday, April 16

     

    8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.

    Registration/Check-in

     

    9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

    KEYNOTE: Creating Big Change in Small Ways


    Keith Guggenberger, Senior Vice-President of Operations
    Starkey Hearing Technologies


    Starkey is a world leader in developing and manufacturing hearing technologies and related accessories. As an executive with broad responsibilities, Keith leads innovation initiatives that develop technologies and drive change in the global manufacturing of medical devices. Guggenberger will share some of the experiences and challenges faced in creating and deploying technologies through microelectronics and rapid device manufacturing. His keynote will explore how to combine leadership, technology and innovation to accomplish big organizational change and growth in small ways.

     

    10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

    Break/Technology Highlights Theater

     

    10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

    Micro Additive Manufacturing


    Two Photon Lithography for the Three-dimensional Micro-fabrication of Extracellular Environments
    Jurgen Stampfl, & Jan Torgersen, Vienna University of Technology
    CHALLENGE: Sub-micrometer 3D-structuring
    NEW PROCESSNEW TECHNOLOGY
    Two-Photon-Polymerisation (2PP) is a rapidly emerging platform technology for the microfabrication of three-dimensional biocompatible scaffolds for tissue engineering with a resolution at the sub-micrometer level. The required near-infrared (NIR) laser emits light of minimally damaging wavelength for biological tissues. This makes it potentially very attractive to apply 2PP for developing new functional materials to be structured in direct contact with cells or other living organisms. It is crucial to design a polymerisable formulation to be minimally toxic and at the same time reasonably reactive.

    Using novel, water-soluble and two-photon active photoinitiators, 3D parts could be fabricated in photosensitive formulations with water contents of up to 80%, the highest water content reported for the use with 2PP. Monomers based on natural proteins combined low toxicity with sufficiently high reactivity. Writing speeds as high as 10 mm/s allowed very short fabrication times. The structuring was performed with a pulsed NIR laser with a wavelength of 810 nm and adjustable power of up to 400 mW. The presented material systems made the fabrication of 3D scaffolds with embedded model organisms possible for the first time.

    This talk will demonstrate the feasibility and possible potential of 2PP and advanced photo-sensitive biomaterials to biofabricate 3D tissue constructs directly in the context with living cells and finally whole organisms.

    LIVE: Bookmark this YouTube channel to watch this presentation live during the event
    http://www.youtube.com/smeevents

     

    Micro Laser Processing for Cladding of Electronic Contacts and Additive Manufacturing of Micro Parts
    Tim Biermann, JTRC
    CHALLENGE: Deposition of thin metal layers and additively manufacturing micro parts
    NEW PROCESSNEW TECHNOLOGYCASE STUDY
    Powder based micro laser processing is a technology with high potential for deposition of small and thin functional layers as well as for additive manufacturing of micro parts. However, simply scaling down the macro processes is not possible. Different laser source with higher brilliance have to be used. Furthermore, since very fine powders are required, new or modified technologies are needed to overcome the problems with the reduced flowability of such fine powders.

    Manufacturers of electronic parts have an increasing need for material and energy saving processes for electric contacts of noble metals or alloys (e.g. for lead frames, snap domes). Micro laser metal deposition (LMD) can be an alternative to non-selective electroplating of thin layers or to joining of bulk contacts. LMD involves the feeding of a powder onto the work piece which is completely melted and fused to the substrate. The process is well known for repair and cladding of wear resistant layers. The increase in high-tech applications calls for ever greater miniaturization of products coupled with enhanced functionality, integration density, and individualization. Selective laser melting (SLM) which is a powder bed based laser process building up complex parts in an inert gas process chamber layer by layer is well established in the additive manufacturing of individual parts (e.g. implants) and small lot series (e.g. tool inserts). For micro manufacturing both SLM and LMD have to be developed to structure sizes below 100 µm.

    A micro laser deposition technique for gold contact spots has been developed. To create spots well below 100 µm in height and diameter gold powder with a grain size smaller than 10 μm has to be used. The laser beam source is a fiber laser with a beam diameter of less than 100 μm and a power of 200 W. New powder feed systems developed for fine particle sizes are used for powder transport to create a homogeneous aerosol. In a case study for snap domes (nickel alloy), it has been demonstrated that a gold coating over the entire area can be replaced by five selectively deposited gold contact spots. The electrical properties of these gold spots are comparable with those of the electroplated coating. A lifecycle test involving 100,000 operations was successfully completed on a test bench, showing only slight decrease of height and excellent bonding to the substrate.

    Additive micro manufacturing basic investigations have been conducted on a SLM system using a brilliant laser beam source (fiber laser). A modified deposition mechanism was used to deposit ultrafine fractionated powders (< 10 μm) reliably, and a beam diameter of 30 μm implemented using corresponding optics configuration and adjustment. On the basis of this basic research work, initial components (structure sizes ≤ 100 μm) have been built up with layer thicknesses of 10 μm.

     

    Integrative Polymeric Platform
    Leanna Levine, ALine
    CHALLENGE: Controlling on-board pumps, valves and fluid movement as well as minimizing air bubbles and variability in performance in microfluidics
    NEW PROCESSNEW TECHNOLOGY
    A method for rapid prototyping microfluidic devices has been developed. Vents, valves, and pumps can be incorporated into a working prototype devices with high quality in 3 to 5 days. Processes are scalable for high volume production.

    Micro Forming

     

    Micro-Incremental Forming: A Die-less Technology for Rapid Prototyping of Micro Sheet Metal Parts
    Rajiv Malhotra, Northwestern University
    CHALLENGE: Create a flexible, high formability, low forming force micro-forming process
    NEW PROCESS
    Incremental Forming is a relatively new technique that uses a simple hemispherical ended tool moving along a pre-defined three dimensional toolpath to deform a sheet of metal into the desired shape. The greater process flexibility and higher formability in incremental forming (IF) have resulted in greater academic and industrial interest in this process as it can successfully produce ultra-thin parts beyond the forming limit seen in conventional stamping and the process does not require any geometry-specific tooling. Another emerging paradigm in manufacturing has been the increasing application of forming in micro-manufacturing. The above stated process characteristics of IF make it an ideal candidate for being incorporated into the micro-manufacturing paradigm. This work investigates micro-IF to examine how forces and occurrence of sheet failure change when the geometric dimensions of incremental forming are scaled down. The development of a highly repeatable micro-IF experimental setup is described and experiments are performed to show that a previously unknown buckling mode of deformation exists in micro-incremental forming, that is linked to the material microstructure. The analysis provides guidelines for the design and understanding of the micro-incremental forming process.

    Development of High-frequency Vibration System and its Effect on Microforming of Metallic Materials
    Gap-Yong Kim, Iowa State
    CHALLENGE: Impact of vibration on deformation of metallic materials
    NEW PROCESS
    Microforming is an economically competitive process for the fabrication of miniature metallic parts. However, the size effects observed when scaling down the process leads to challenges such as tribological problems at the interface and premature tool wear due to localized stress concentration regions. In this talk, a hybrid micro/meso forming assisted by high-frequency vibration and the contributing mechanisms of the high-frequency vibration were investigated. The effects of high-frequency vibration on the improvement of surface finish, decrease of the friction at the die–specimen interface, and reduction of forming stress were analyzed and discussed based on the vibration-assisted upsetting experiments. In this presentation, influence of vibration on metal plasticity will also be discussed. It is known that high-frequency vibration affects metal plasticity during metal forming and bonding operations. A modeling framework for the acoustic plasticity based on the crystal plasticity theory has been developed.

    Micro-rolling: A Mass Production Process for Micro-texturing over Large Areas
    Rajiv Malhotra, Northwestern University
    CHALLENGE: Create a high throughput process for texturing micro-features over large areas.
    NEW PROCESSNEW TECHNOLOGY
    Micro-rolling is a process that is very suitable for mass production of large micro-textured surfaces due to its high throughput, inherent simplicity of operation and reduced footprint as compared to other processes like reactive ion etching, laser machining and EDM. In this work the design and operation of a destop micro-rolling machine is discussed. A novel method for monitoring the pressure distribution through a set of capacitive sensors embedded within the roll is presented along with numerical and analytical models for determining the optimal sensor dimension to maximize the capacitance output in the pico-Farad range, under space constraint. The technique is evaluated by simulation and confirmed through experiments. To assist in the forming of micro-channels with a high aspect ratio, electrically-assisted micro-rolling (EAμR) is also explored.

    12:00 p.m. -1:30 p.m.

    Group Lunch on the Show Floor

     

     

    1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

    Technology Highlights Theater

     

     

    1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

    Combining MicroManufacturing Technologies for New Processes

     

     

    Micro-manufacturing of Multi-component Assemblies for Large-scale Physics Experiments
    Richard Seugling, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
    CHALLENGE: Agile manufacturing for precision manufacture of assemblies
    NEW PROCESSCASE STUDY
    The high-energy density target fabrication group at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory uses a variety of micromanufacturing techniques and metrology tools to fabricate millimeter-scale assemblies with micrometer-scale features. These assemblies are used for physics experiments to study the properties of materials at high temperatures, pressures, and strain rates using large-scale laser facilities, such as the National Ignition Facility. An overview of part requirements and current micromanufacturing and metrology processes, with the goal of sharing technologies while investigating emerging technologies that may enhance manufacturing capabilities will be presented. Typically, requirements for these assemblies include surface finish ≤ 50 nm Ra and feature form error ≤ 1 µm. A combination of micromanufacturing techniques, including single-point diamond turning (SPDT), micro-milling, physical vapor deposition, and precision tooling, to allow for in situ assembly and metrology is utilized. Included will be how micromilling was used in combination with SPDT to manufacture 250 µm thick low-density Ta2O5 discs with complex slotted features and how micro-coining was used to create 4 µm peak-to-valley sinusoidal patterns on one face of a 50 µm thick tantalum foil.

    Monolithic Fabrication of Millimeter-scale Machines
    Pratheev Sreetharan, Vibrant Research
    CHALLENGE: Enabling high performance machines at the millimeter length scale with PC-MEMS
    NEW PROCESSNEW TECHNOLOGY
    Creating sub-100mg aerial flapping wing robotic insects is an enormous challenge not met by existing manufacturing technologies. Such machines require use of a diverse palette of advanced engineering materials, tight electromechanical integration, efficient and precise mechanisms, and machine components spanning the critical millimeter to centimeter distance scales. While sub-millimeter scale manufacturing is dominated by Silicon MEMS and many conventional methods can produce larger machines, such "mesoscale" devices remain challenging to manufacture. Printed Circuit MEMS, or PC-MEMS, is a laminate-based manufacturing technology that is rising to meet this challenge.

    This challenge motivated development of PC-MEMS. The basic elements of a PC-MEMS process that enables monolithic, topologically complex, millimeter-scale machines constructed from the most advanced materials will be presented. Fundamental advantages and disadvantages of laminate-based PC-MEMS manufacturing, and the broad range of possible commercial applications beyond insect-scale robotics in the coming years will be discussed.

     

    Transfer Printing Based Micromanufacturing (Micro-Masonry)
    Seok Kim, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    CHALLENGE: Enabling 3D/additive micromanufacturing with common semiconductors
    NEW TECHNOLOGY
    Transfer printing represents a heterogeneous materials assembly and integration strategy, with important applications in classes of electronic and optpelectronic devices that combine rigid inorganic and deformable organic materials. The process involves the use of a soft stamp to transfer solid micro/nanostructured materials (i.e., “inks”) from a substrate where they are generated or grown to a different substrate where for device integration. An overview of past and current efforts into utilizing transfer printing to develop flexible electronic devices including photovoltaic and display application will be presented. A new small scale manufacturing strategy based on individual manipulation which is influenced by an advanced form of transfer printing will be discussed. The strategy, `micro-masonry`, is the full or partial fabrication of micro/nano-systems from individual micro/nano-scale units deterministically manipulated and bound together. Tools, process, and applications of the micro/nano-masonry that are being developed will be shared.

    Mechanical Micro Machining

     

     

    Modeling of Cutting Forces and Cycle Times for Micro-machined Components
    Troy Marusich, Third Wave Systems
    CHALLENGE: Ability to make micro-machining productivity improvements
    NEW PROCESSCASE STUDY
    A physics-based finite element model was developed to model the cutting behavior of Al6061 in the micro-machining regime. This model was validated by comparing cutting force predictions against measurements obtained from experimental machining tests performed on a three-axis milling machine. Experiments encompass multiple tool diameters, uncut chip thicknesses, and depths of cut. New advancements aimed at the accurate prediction of cycle times for micro-machining processes within a physics-based toolpath-level analysis framework are also presented. The model takes into account acceleration, deceleration, and jerk characteristics of the machine tool controller to improve overall cycle time predictions. Model predictions are compared against on-machine cycle times for micro-machined features. Finally, the significance of the results for process improvement efforts of micro-machined components is discussed. Although the presentation focuses on Al6061 alloy, the underlying modeling techniques and components are applicable to a large variety of materials and processes.

    Ultrasonic Vibration Texturing for the Micro-structured Functional Surfaces
    Ping Guo, Northwestern University
    CHALLENGE: Fastgeneration of micro-structured functional surfaces
    NEW TECHNOLOGY
    Various applications of micro-structured surfaces, including micro-heat exchangers, friction reduction, bacteria control, hydrophobic surfaces, performance enhanced biopsy needles/surgical knives, etc. will be presented. Details of the technology will be shared including how utilizing the extra freedom of the tool motion (ultrasonic vibration), coupled with the conventional machining operation, can generate micro-dimple arrays or micro-channels on the surfaces. Its principles are introduced and compared with the existing vibration-assisted machining method. The design of the key component of the technology, the ultrasonic vibration generator, is also covered. The realization of the technology is presented. Examples are given when the technology is incorporated in the turning operation to generate micro-dimple arrays on the outside surface of a cylinder, and in the 3-axis CNC machine to generate micro features on a plane or free-form surface.

    Micro Machining and Hard Milling
    Akira Uehara, Yasda Precision Japan
    CHALLENGE: Micro mill a product that could previously be done only with the EDM process
    NEW TECHNOLOGY

    3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

    Technology Highlights Theater

     

     

    3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

    Laser Micro Machining

     

     

    Micro Machining Capabilities using a 355nm and 1064nm Picosecond Laser
    Geoff Shannon, Miyachi Unitek Corp
    CHALLENGE: Minimizing post processing
    NEW PROCESSCASE STUDY
    The industrialization of picosecond lasers offers a new micro machining tool that can provide unique features in metals and polymers as well as minimizing the requirement for post process cleaning operations. The pulse duration of laser pulses has a very significant effect on the machining capabilities of the laser with regard to feature size and debris, and also the types of materials that can be processed. In contrast to nansecond lasers, picosecond lasers with pulse durations of around 10 picoseconds enable micro machining of metals with negligible heat effect zones and the large peak powers create mostly vaporized materials leading to minimal re deposited material. At picosecond pulse durations the laser can be operated in355nm, 532nm and 1064nm and so the advantages of the lower wavelength for minimal feature sixe or the longer wavelength for more average power can be implemented according to the application. A brief overview of the technology is presented with application examples including materials such as stainless steel, nitinol, titanium, pebax, pelathane and PLLA in the sub 200 micron thickness range.

    Pulsed Laser Micro Polishing of Metals
    Frank Pfefferkorn, University of Wisconsin-Madison
    CHALLENGE: Smaller surface roughness while maintaining tight dimensional tolerances
    NEW PROCESSCASE STUDY
    Pulsed laser micro polishing (PLµP) is a non-contact method of selectively polishing micro-scale areas. The PLμP process irradiates the workpiece surface with laser pulses (100 – 5,000 ns duration) at a fluence that causes surface melting with minimal or no ablation. As a result of melting, surface tension forces work to smooth (i.e., pull down) sharp surface asperities. PLµP can selectively polish micro-features without masking/preparation, produces no debris/residue, deposits a controllable amount of heat (pulsing), creates no waste, and can be automated. The result is that micro-features can be polished without the danger of altering the form or dimensions of the part. PLµP has achieved an average surface roughness of Sa = 50 nm on micro end milled titanium samples. Two distinct polishing regimes have recently been identified and methods of utilizing both in order to achieve smoother surfaces will be presented.

    Laser Induced Plasma Micro-Patterning
    Ishan Saxena, Northwestern University
    CHALLENGE: Precision micro-texturing over large areas, on multiple materials
    NEW TECHNOLOGY
    The current challenges of precision micro- texturing over large areas are related to repeatability, consistent feature geometry, adaptability to materials and machining time. A novel technique of texturing micro-patterns over surfaces on a variety of materials, using laser induced plasma micro-machining combined with an optical beam shaping system to create micro-patterns in a short time will be presented. The technique, referred to as Laser Induced Plasma Micro-Patterning (LIP-MP) would potentially provide > 95% reduction in machining time as compared to conventional spot laser ablation. The underlying principles and general idea of the technique are discussed, followed by a ray-tracing analysis and optical simulation to show the predicted micro-patterns produced by different optical systems consisting of spherical focusing lens, cylindrical lens and Fresnel biprism. Optical elements composed of higher order conic surfaces may be used to render more uniform micro-channels and micro-patterns. Initial experiments have yielded uniform micro-channels 8-12 μm wide, 15-25 μm deep and 800 μm long, fabricated on polished aluminum and silicon surfaces using a 532 nm picosecond pulsed laser with a Gaussian beam profile. The research is focused on increasing the uniformity and aspect ratios in channel profiles, demonstrating multi-material capability, manipulating the plasma plume and high-speed texturing over large areas, including curved surfaces.

    Micro Metrology Technology & Applications

     

     

    Tantalum Laser Targets: A Case Study of Materials-Sensitive Micromanufacturing Techniques
    Kerri Blobaum, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
    CHALLENGE: Effects of micromanufacturing processes on material properties
    CASE STUDY
    High-energy-density experiments at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s National Ignition Facility (NIF) and the Laboratory for Laser Energetics’s OMEGA laser require 3 – 5 mm diameter tantalum foils with a two-dimensional sine-wave pattern imprinted on one side. The peal-to-valley amplitudes and wavelengths of the sine waves are on the order of 5µm and 50-100µm, respectively. Surface finishes are on the order of 20nm, and the foil thickness are 35 – 50µm. In addition to the tight dimensional tolerances, the experiments require that the tantalum has specific materials properties, including a small grain size and specified crystallographic orientations. Therefore, traditional metrology tools must be combined with “materials metrology” to fully inspect. Efforts to quantify material property changes that result from manufacturing processes will be presented. Because these foils are manufactured for surface-sensitive experiments that probe mechanical properties at high pressures and high-strain rates, it is important to fully quantify the ambient condition properties. Using tantalum laser targets as a case study, how microfabrication techniques such as mechanical polishing and microcoining can adversely modify the materials properties will be discussed. How materials science characterization techniques are utilized to quantify manufacturing damage and suggest methods for retaining the desired properties will be shared.

    High Precision EFM Micro Probe System for CNC Machines
    Jerry Mraz, SmalTec
    CHALLENGE: In situ metrology during the micro machining process
    NEW TECHNOLOGY
    Advancements of the EFM Micro Probe system and the future design expectations will be presented. Focus will be on the results of the micro probe design and development as well as the use and data obtained using this system. Small hole applications including holes of less than 50 micron diameter will be demonstrated. Surface metrology of a contoured surface will also be presented. Resolution of the metrology will be discussed, having standard deviations as low as 0.0001mm (100nm) repeatedly measured (1000x). Other examples of applications will be discussed including high aspect ratio holes, entrance and exit metrology of small holes, and surface topography inside small holes and features. Materials used in this study include stainless steel, platinum, brass and others.

    Characterization of Surface Shape in Machining using High Definition 3D Metrology
    Michael Mater, Coherix
    CHALLENGE: Understanding and improving machined surfaces
    NEW PROCESSCASE STUDY
    Historically, product specifications and tolerances have been limited by manufacturing processes and our ability to measure and characterize the components that are a result of that process. Advances in measurement technologies and techniques in manufacturing plants enable visualization of surface shape of machined parts. Understanding these shapes allows a more complete understanding of the machine process and variables and the resulting surface shape. Experiments conducted to extract surface patterns from high definition measurement techniques and correlate them to cutting force and machining variables and how this information can be used for process monitoring and machine control will be presented.

    5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

    Welcome Reception & Exhibits

     

     

    Day Two — Wednesday, April 17

     

     

    9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

    KEYNOTE: Economic Outlook

     

     

    William Strauss
    Senior Economist and Economic Advisor
    Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago


    The “Great Recession” of 2008 and 2009 ended in the middle of 2009 with significant impacts on the economy. The economy experienced outsized losses in the housing, manufacturing and jobs. Yet, what should be a robust recovery is not occurring, nor expected. Unemployment remains very high, consumers are saving at an increased pace, limiting the growth of consumer spending. Credit conditions, while significantly improved from what existed during the recession, remain relatively tight and will act as a headwind to growth. Strauss will look at the performance of the overall macro economy with specific attention paid to key economic sectors and indicators.

    10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

    Technology Highlights Theater

     

     

    10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

    Micro Metrology: Calibration, Standards, and Characterization Methods

     

     

    Calibration of Surface Metrology Reference Specimens Using Interferometric Instruments
    Hy Tran, Sandia National Laboratories
    Surface topography is an important parameter as manufactured feature sizes become smaller. Measurement of areal topography offers advantages compared to roughness parameters (R parameters). Optical instruments are typically used when measuring areal parameters. They may also be used for measuring roughness parameters. This presentation focuses on using a coherence scanning interferometer (a type of scanning white light interferometer) to calibrate different types of roughness reference specimens: Step height, stylus condition, and roughness parameter specimens (Type A, Type B, and Type C specimens as described in ASME B46.1:2009). Comparison of evaluations of S (areal) parameters to R (roughness profile evaluations) will also be presented for precision-finished parts. Preliminary estimates of measurement uncertainties will also be presented.

    ISO’s 3D Standards and Their Impact on Precision Metrology
     Erik Novak & Joanna Schmit, Bruker Corporation/Nano Surfaces Division
    CHALLENGE: Process control for micromanufacturing precision components
    CASE STUDY
    ISO has been working for a number of years on new areal surface measurement standards. The 3D surface parameters (S pararmeters) were recently released and standardize many new functionally-relevent surface calculations. In addition, the work on instrumentation will change how systems are specified and allow greater comparisons between different areal metrology platforms. The ISO areal surface work will present both new opportunities and challenges to manufacturers and industry. It will also discuss how this work can positively impact industry as manufacturers strive to select the best metrology system for a given need. This will be addressed both at a high level and with specific examples of the application of these standard in manufacturing.

    Size Effects in Microforming
    James Margagee, Northwestern University
    CHALLENGE: Bridging knowledge gap between materials at the macro and micro scale
    NEW PROCESS
    Microforming is a realm of manufacturing that utilizes deformation processes to produce components with geometric features in the microscale. As a result, the geometry of the manufactured component becomes comparable to the inherent material grain size. Furthermore, the behavior of materials at the microscale greatly differs from bulk behavior. Therefore, it is imperative for the engineer to understand the influence of these types of 'size effects' during any microforming process. An overview of the importance of size effects in microforming processes will be presented to provide an understanding and appreciation of the newest characterization methods and techniques to measure material behavior at the microscale.

    Micro Molding

     

     

    Advances in Injection Molding Micro Fluidic Circuits
    Mark Kinder, Plastic Design Corporation
    CHALLENGE: Economical miniaturization of complex microfluidic circuits
    NEW PROCESS
    There are multiple manufacturing technologies to produce micro fluidic circuits for lab on a chip applications. Effort over the last few years has focused on reduction of feature size, increased density of features on a given footprint and improvement in repeatable accuracy. At present, injection molding provides the most cost effective option for medium through high volume manufacturing. As with any manufacturing process there are limitations. In the case of injection molding; replication of small features and consistency of replication, can have a significant impact on the fluid dynamics of the product. Mold requirements, metrology capabilities, and processing requirements will be presented. Advancements to date in feature reduction and precision will be noted. Future improvements will be explored.

    Converging Technologies: A Micro Molding Perspective
    Brent Hahn, Accumold
    CHALLENGE: Design challenges for micro molded components
    NEW PROCESS
    Beyond the basics of micro molding there have been several technologies in the marketplace that have brought complementary value to the process. These converging uses for micro molding and helps design engineers understand what’s possible today with micro plastics will be presented. Through a series of case studies the presentation will demonstrate a few of these emerging concepts and give practical application to how these technologies may fit into their own future designs. Topics include:

    • Micro Surface Enhancement (MSE) Molding - A process of applying micron or sub-micron sized features on the surface of plastic.
    • 3D-MID Micro Molding - A process for molding parts that can then be laser traced with contact leads that requires no metal overmolding.
    • Micro Optics - A process of molding optic quality plastic parts for a variety of applications.
    • 2-Shot Micro Molding/Consolidation Molding - A process to consolidate and/or create single parts that were once separate.

     

    Micro Molding Thin Walled Devices
    Donna Bibber, Micro Engineering Solutions
    CHALLENGE: Analysis, tooling, processing, and handling of very thin walled micro molded components
    CASE STUDY
    For micro devices to be small, compliant, comfortable, and/or flexible, they may require very thin wall thicknesses as thin as 0.002” (50 microns). To mold these thin wall devices, polymer selection, ultra-precision tooling, and knowledge of CFD (computational fluid dynamics) is critical to the successful micro thin walled project. The necessary analysis, tooling, processing, and handling of very thin walled micro molded components will be explored. Several case studies will be presented showing products with up to 130:1 aspect ratios from wall thickness to length using several medical and implantable grade polymers.

    12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

    Group Lunch on the Show Floor

     

     

    1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

    Technology Highlights Theater

     

     

    1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

    Surface Micro Machining

     

     

    MicroMachining of Ceramic Materials
    Murali Sundaram, University of Cincinnati
    CHALLENGE: High aspect radio micro machining, ceramic micro machining
    NEW TECHNOLOGYCASE STUDY
    Electrochemical micromachining of feature sizes in the 50 to 250 µm range will be presented. Discussion will include micro tooling and other issues associated with micro machining using unconventional methods. A specific case study achieving an aspect ratio of 8 (about three-fold increase in state-of-art) in the micromachining of glass will be presented. Strategies to realize this improvement and potential applications will also be explored.

    Precision Electrolytic Machining Advancements & Applications
    Donald Risko, PEMTechnologies
    CHALLENGE: Machine multiple parts simultaneously without burrs and excellent surface finish
    NEW TECHNOLOGYCASE STUDY
    Precision Electrolytic Machining (PEM) is a major advancement in the electrochemical machining method of metal removal that uses synchronized electrical and mechanical pulsing. The process is capable of machining features to tolerances in the range of ±10 microns at rates that are ten to twenty times faster than EDM. Since the metal removal mechanism is electrolytic dissolution of surface atoms on the workpiece, there is no heat affected zone as with EDM or laser, or machining marks on the surface as encountered with milling or grinding. Therefore, there are no surface stresses and the resultant surface finish is excellent. Additionally, there are no burrs generated. These characteristics, along with attributes such as no tool wear (the tool never touches the workpiece) and simultaneous multiple part machining, result in a cost effective process for a range of applications. Description of the process; the equipment; tooling methods; and a broad range of examples that will give the attendee an understanding of what the PEM process can and cannot accomplish will be presented.

    Micromanufacturing: What’s Next?

    As technology, processes and applications continue to grow, what’s next for micromanufacturing? A group of industry the will discuss what they see and answer your questions. Panelists will include:

     

    3:00 p.m.

    Conference Concludes