UNI centers kick off summer with Industry 4.0 and Foundry 4.0 workshops for businesses and foundry owners

UNI centers kick off summer with Industry 4.0 and Foundry 4.0 workshops for businesses and foundry owners

Tour of the Foundry 4.0 Center

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — The University of Northern Iowa’s Metal Casting Center, Foundry 4.0 Center and the Center for Business Growth & Innovation (CBGI) will provide four virtual, multi-session workshop series to share technical assistance and training solutions with foundries across the country:

Additive Manufacturing for Investment Casting 
June 17, 11 a.m. - noon CST 
Beginning with an exploration of basic concepts, participants will progress to specialized topics like Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF), Stereolithography (SLA), and Digital Light Processing (DLP) pattern printing, wax and PMMA materials, and gating rigging practices. You will walk away with a comprehensive understanding of additive manufacturing techniques and their application in the investment process. The four virtual sessions will be hosted by Joshua O’Dell, project engineer, Foundry 4.0 Center.

Robotic CAD to Path Programming for Casting Finishing 
June 19, Noon - 1 p.m. CST 
Learn the practical ways to use offline programming for robotic arms. These lessons include instruction on creating a variety of robot programs using industrial robots to finish a cast metal part. Attendees will be able to follow along and receive feedback on creating their own robot cells and programs. The four virtual sessions will be hosted by Sam Manternach, project engineer, Foundry 4.0 Center.

How to Engage with UNI to complete your guided Foundry 4.0 Readiness Assessment 
June 20, Noon - 1 p.m. CST 
CBGI’s Foundry 4.0 Readiness Assessment enables a business to gain valuable insights into their current level of readiness for Foundry 4.0 technologies. The workshop guides participants step-by-step through the process, assisting them in identifying areas for improvement to assist them in gaining a competitive edge. The two virtual sessions will be hosted by Todd Hutcheson, executive in residence at UNI’s CBGI.

Development of Real-Time Process Sensors for use in Metal Casting Equipment 
July 10, Noon - 1 p.m. CST 
Learn about the Internet of Things (IoT) and explore its possibilities. You will dive into the world of IoT and build your own small-scale system. The four virtual sessions will be hosted by Andrew Berns, UNI assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science. Participants will be responsible for sourcing their own materials to participate in this workshop (approx. $130). A detailed material list will be sent to all participants who register. Participants will require access to an unrestricted Wi-Fi network and a computer monitor with an HDMI port.

All workshops are free of charge and require Zoom webinar registration. Webinar recordings will be available to registrants after the session is complete. Details and registration for each series is available at mcc.uni.edu/workshops.

“Foundry 4.0, also known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution, is characterized by the integration of digital technologies into all aspects of business operations, fundamentally changing the way businesses operate and deliver value to customers,” said Jerry Thiel, director of the Foundry 4.0 and Metal Casting Centers. “With the rapid pace of technological advancement, it has become increasingly important for businesses to stay ahead of the curve and embrace Foundry 4.0 technologies to remain competitive in today's market.”

"Implementation of Industry 4.0 technology can be a real game-changer for businesses and foundry owners looking to thrive in the digital age," said Todd Hutcheson, executive in residence at UNI’s CBGI.

UNI Metal Casting Center: As leaders in independent research specializing in metal casting materials, processes and technology, the UNI Metal Casting Center focuses on materials research, metal manufacturing and Foundry education. With revolutionary metal casting, molding and 3D printing equipment, the Metal Casting Center is able to utilize its equipment to advance learning and push the boundaries of technology. 

UNI Foundry 4.0 Center: With unmatched expertise and equipment, we have the capability to use special materials and/or processes that aren’t yet commercially available to provide molds and cores to companies.  We work with larger companies and industry associations for the acceptance and adoption of technology and then have the opportunity to move this technology down to smaller companies involved in the supply chain.

The UNI Center for Business Growth & Innovation at UNI offers support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) seeking growth and development. We specialize in providing essential skills for strategic planning, optimization, and sustainable growth, and are a pioneering F4.0 and I 4.0 initiative within UNI's Business and Community Services (BCS) programs.