Winners of the Westec Manufacturing challenge will get a special treat this year: Astronaut Buzz Aldrin will present them with their award.
Aldrin's presentation will be part of what's called the Total Manufacturing Experience, an event that colocates the Westec Exposition, SME Summit Conference & Annual Meeting, Micro-Manufacturing Conference, NanoManufacturing Conference, Metalworking Fluid Management Certificate Program, and Lean Bronze Certification Review Program.
Westec, North America's largest annual manufacturing and metalworking event, kicks off in Los Angeles next week with exhibitors from over 150 categories representing 2,500 international product lines.
Additional activities at this year's show include a Technology Theater featuring free sessions that highlight technology innovations and new products; a Product and Process Design & Management "Hot Topics" Pavilion that offers free presentations on such topics as design, supplychain management, PLM, prototyping, tooling, logistics, and inspection; an Automation Cell "live" mini factory demonstrating the latest in automation; and a Composites Resource Center covering new offerings from composite material and tooling suppliers.
Also on site is a Job Shop & Outsourcing Pavilion and a Green Technologies and Plant Efficiency & Energy Management Solutions Resource Area. The latter will highlight products and services for better efficiency, to manage waste, and ensure environmental compliance. An EXPOtential Center features a Web-based business-relationship network aimed at connecting commontechnology buyers and sellers.
There is also a "Build a Better Mousetrap" team competition, based on the "Mousetrap" board game, that lets contestants see how their lean-engineering prowess stacks up. Other diversions include the thrill and excitement of acrobatic flight on the M-4 Flight Simulator. Two passengers at a time will pivot, spin, twist, roll, plunge, dive, and soar in 360° hair-raising motion.
Finally, student and educator activities include a Student Summit and the Westec Manufacturing Challenge.
The show runs from Monday, March 27 through Thursday, March 30. Visit www.sme.org for more information.