VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Tampere University of Technology (TUT) and Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK) are creating an extensive research infrastructure in Finland. This alliance will provide new business opportunities for Finnish industry, as manufacturing begins to benefit from research environments and machines. Automation and robotics, 3D printing and digital product development are the focus areas of the infrastructures.
Sharing will multiply the use of separate infrastructures, when a range of research environments are available to companies, and to VTT, TUT and TAMK which are providing the research infrastructure. The idea is to facilitate and accelerate demos, prototypes, piloting and product development without major investments. This will create new volumes for large project preparation activities, which will increase the chances of involvement in major, international programmes. The result will be new expertise, and improved competitiveness and productivity in Finnish manufacturing.
"High-quality, international cooperation requires strong centres of expertise of the kind appearing here," stresses Professor Kari T. Koskinen of TUT.
One-stop shop at SMACC
The Smart Machines and Manufacturing Centre SMACC, which was founded by VTT and TUT in 2015, serves as a platform for combining infrastructures. Such infrastructures will be made available to Finnish manufacturers via SMACC's website in stages from 29 May. Agile practices will be adapted to meet companies' needs as experience of such needs is gained. The SMACC expert network will help clients to find and benefit from the right kind of infrastructure.
"Practical cooperation will create more opportunities to help companies on a one-stop-shop basis," says Risto Kuivanen, Business Development Manager at VTT.
VTT, TUT and TAMK's research infrastructures are categorised on the website into digital systems, smart machines, robots and material development. Each of these includes several modules in support of challenging manufacturing, such as the latest measuring devices for creating experimental prototypes. For example, digital systems include industrial 3D printers for materials such as plastic, ceramics and metal printers.
"This infra-alliance will also provide excellent support for Tampere3's development," says Mika Ijas, Principal Lecturer at TAMK.
What is SMACC: http://smacc.fi/
- Together, VTT and TUT form the TTY Smart Machines and Manufacturing Centre, which is building the future of Finland's manufacturing industry.
- The annual volume of SMACC's collaborative research is EUR 40 million in total. New technologies and approaches are being trialled on a collaborative basis.