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Amada Miyachi Blog

Welding Innovation – the Decade’s Top Advancements

Posted by Barbara Kuntz on Tue, Dec 18, 2012 @ 11:48 AM

One of the great things about working for Miyachi Unitek Corporation is the company’s near-religious zeal for innovation. I feel like it’s really in our “DNA,”  - and while it can be frustrating to ‘finish’ a new technical datasheet only to find out that the product has been tweaked/improved in the time it took to print it - it’s something that I’m proud to be a part of. As a company, we have always provided not only equipment, but also complete manufacturing solutions, which require an understanding of both equipment and process. We are always helping people answer the question, “Is there a better way to do this?” 

That innovative spirit recently got its just rewards, as Miyachi Unitek was named one of 14 finalists in the Patrick Soon-Shiong Innovation Awards, presented by the Los Angeles Business Journal and NantWorks. We were honored as an organization that “expands the boundaries of its industry and leads the region in impactful innovation.” I have to admit it felt good to get kudos for some of the technical innovations we have spearheaded in the past decade, and recognition for the impact some of these innovations. I’d like to give our readers just a few examples.

  • Application of three-dimensional laser cutting for production of arthroscopic surgery devices – This is a method of using a five-axis motion platform to achieve true three dimensional contour cutting for a shaver used to cut away and remove unwanted fragments of the cartilage from a joint during arthroscopic surgery. With this technique, the edge quality of the laser cut tube is nearly flawless, minimizing the extent of secondary manufacturing process steps. This means better shavers, better surgeries, lower risks and ultimately a better quality of life for many people.
  • New welding technique enables crack free welding of high silicon Al-Si controlled expansion alloys and aluminum 4047 for aerospace electronic packages – Using a novel concept, we enabled crack-free welding of 70 percent silicon alloys, which are lightweight, high thermal conductivity alloys that are used for RF and microwave packages and other critical heat sinking applications. Miyachi Unitek modified the solidification process without using post weld heat treatment. By using a fillet weld geometry and moving the weld close to the edge of the package the isotherms around the weld are modified such that the thermal gradient is reduced and re-orientated. The result included crack-free welds in the highest silicon content alloy, CE7.
  • Advances in laser welding systems and technology for medical device manufacturing – This innovation includes motion and laser control techniques beneficial to hermetic laser seam welding of implantable devices. Using special software to achieve “position-based firing” along the contour, we developed a method that fired the laser in response to its actual position along the contour at any point in time. We also developed new metals joining production methods using “green light” (532nm) pulsed welding lasers, which facilitates precision welding of copper and gold alloys. This offers a true metallurgical weld, consistent high-reliability electrical connections with no long term resistance drift, and a non-contact process that completely eliminates risks of electro-static discharge or physical damage to the parts being joined.
  • New force-based bend align increases yield and throughput for manufacturing pump lasers for the telecom industry – This unique force-based algorithm is used for deforming pump laser diode packages back into alignment. The packages are part of fiber laser amplifiers used to boost a telecommunications signal as it’s transmitted over vast distances. With the force based bend align method, the signal is peaked faster and in many cases with increased coupling over position based systems. The increased coupling provides improved amplification of the signal and greater signal to noise ratio.
  • Enabling high performance optoelectronic modules using novel gas-conserving resistance welding electrode system – This new projection welding technique dramatically reduces the amount of Xenon gas needed to backfill a package. Xenon has good thermal properties and does not enter into slow chemical reactions with other materials that can cause degraded performance and reliability. However, it is extremely expensive, and many existing processes waste the costly gas during backfilling. The new technique enables packages to be evacuated, and then filled with gas before being hermetically sealed using projection welding. This process consumes as little as 5 cubic centimeters of Xenon gas, costing only $0.75 per part.
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Topics: laser welding, laser tube cutting, projection welding, welding innovation

More on Direct Part Marking Methods: Compare Durability, Speed, Mark Quality, and System Cost

Posted by Geoff Shannon on Wed, Dec 12, 2012 @ 11:40 AM

Let’s give this topic one more quick look. 

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Topics: laser marking, dot peen marking, chemical etching, engraving, marking methods, laser markers, etching equipment, laser engraving, tube marking, laser marker

Miyachi Unitek's Call to Action: Serving Your Communities

Posted by Barbara Kuntz on Thu, Dec 06, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

It’s that time of year – the holiday season – and I’m certain that at least some of your friends have taken to the social media networks to post about the many things they’re thankful for. And even if you don’t participate in the public thankfulness, you can’t help but reflect on all the things that you, too, have to be thankful for. So in today’s post, I’d like to change directions just a bit to say that I am really thankful to work for Miyachi Unitek, which is so much more than just the place where I earn my paycheck. After working for the company for15 years, it is a second home, and its people are like family. More than 40 percent of our employees have been with us longer than 10 years – and 10% have been with the company more than 20 years – half of those, more than 30 years. 30 years! According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, average tenure at a company in the manufacturing industry is just 6 years.  We must be doing something right!

Why do our employees stay so long? Because we are all made to understand that we are part of a whole, working toward one goal; no one job is more important than another…and, I believe it’s also because the company cares not only for its employees, but also for the industrial and geographic communities in which we work

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Topics: Organizations

Weighing the Pros & Cons of the Major Marking Methods

Posted by Mark Boyle on Wed, Nov 28, 2012 @ 11:44 AM

Not long ago, I discussed some of the factors you should consider when deciding which marking technology to use:  material type, part function, geometry, surface finish/roughness, coating, mark quality, mark dimension/part size, and serialization - all play a part in this process. Today’s post digs a bit deeper into selecting the right marking technology for your specific application by looking at a concise listing of the pros and cons of each of the major marking technologies: inkjet, dot peen, chemical etching, and laser marking.

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Topics: laser marking, marking methods, laser markers, laser ablation, laser engraving, laser annealing, laser marker

AC, DC, CD or HF: Which Spot Welding Power Supply Should I Use?

Posted by Marty Mewborne on Tue, Nov 20, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

I recently posted a blog about closed loop welders and how you can get the most out of using them, and it occurred to me that some of you may not be familiar with the different resistance spot welding power supply technologies, how they work, and what they can be used for. So here is a short description of the four different types, including both closed loop and open loop designs.

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Topics: Resistance welding, spot welding, resistance spot welding

Projection Welding: Balance Heat and Extend Electrode Life

Posted by Marty Mewborne on Wed, Nov 07, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

If you read my recent blog on heat balance, you know that there are five different techniques that can be used to balance weld heat that don’t  involve making changes to materials or part design.  And at the end of the blog I mentioned that if you’re still having difficulty after trying all five of the techniques, you may want to consider adding projections to one of the parts.

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Topics: Resistance welding, spot welding, projection welding, electronic package sealing

Direct Part Marking: Enabling Cradle-to-Grave Traceability

Posted by Mark Boyle on Tue, Oct 30, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

Product traceability over its complete lifecycle is one of the key issues driving marking technology today. Manufacturers are looking for cradle-to-grave traceability to improve product quality and make sure all their suppliers fall in line with quality standards. Oh, and let’s not forget they also want to make it easier and less costly to engage in product recalls. 

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Topics: laser marking, engraving, marking methods, laser markers, etching equipment, laser engraving, laser annealing, laser marker

Spot Welding Equipment Calibration: the Key to Reducing Down-Time

Posted by Marty Mewborne on Fri, Oct 26, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

Equipment calibration may not be the most exciting activity, but it can go a very long way in saving you both time and money by reducing plant down-time due to process control fluctuations.

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Topics: Resistance welding, spot welding

Heat Balance: the Key to Successful Resistance Welding

Posted by Marty Mewborne on Tue, Oct 23, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

All right folks.  Let’s cut to the chase.  Successful resistance welding boils down to heat balance:  getting both parts up to their bonding temperature at the same time.  If too much heat goes into one part, and not enough into the other, the overheated part can become weak, and the weld won’t be strong.

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Topics: Resistance welding, spot welding

Laser Tube Cutting: 5 Tips for Successful System Integration

Posted by Geoff Shannon on Thu, Oct 18, 2012 @ 08:00 AM

We’ve spent a lot of time this past year talking about our medical tube cutting capabilities, and, as you might guess, we’ve been getting a lot of calls on the subject. Let me start by saying that successful thin wall metal tube cutting is all about the results: excellent precision, superior edge quality, and tight dimensional tolerances - and so it makes sense that our customers and prospects are concerned about getting the “perfect” laser for the job.  Achieving these precision cuts, however, isn’t all about the laser – it’s more about its successful integration into a complete system.

What exactly does this integration entail?  Well, to start, in addition to the “perfect laser,” each application requires a workstation, focusing optics, assist gas, a motion package with programmable motion, full-featured control software with post processor capability and a user friendly and intuitive interface. Integrators need to develop an entire system in which all of these elements work together to achieve the necessary cut quality, production throughput and minimal downtime.

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Topics: laser cutting, laser tube cutting

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