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NSTC’s Support Advancing Smart Manufacturing in Taiwan

The National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) actively promotes smart manufacturing key technology research projects in Taiwanese universities to increase the value of Taiwan’s machine tool industry and assist the Taiwanese manufacturing industry in responding to future technological challenges.

Professor Chen Jenq-Shyong of National Chung Hsing University’s Department of Mechanical Engineering has developed ultrasonic-vibration-assisted machining technology for computer numerical control (CNC) precision machining of advanced materials that are hard and brittle or difficult to cut, with long-term support from the NSTC.

This technique has the potential to increase machining efficiency and quality as well as tool life. Likewise, for intelligent ultrasonic machining technology, an integrated solution of online monitoring, on-machine optical measurement, and digital technology has been created and proven.

The use of advanced lightweight, high-hardness, and high-temperature-resistant materials like silicon carbide (SiC), sapphire, quartz, ceramics, glass, and composite materials is becoming more and more necessary in sectors like semiconductors, electronics, optoelectronics, aerospace, energy, medical equipment, and precision mechanical components.

Intelligent real-time monitoring and remote service technology for ultrasonic vibration-assisted machining of semiconductor materials, an NSTC-funded project, has produced a successfully integrated solution to improve these advanced materials’ machining effectiveness and quality.

Professor Chen is leading a multidisciplinary team that includes academics from Ching Yun University of Science and Technology and National Chung Hsing University.  This project includes wireless power transmission technology, IoT smart tool holder technology, intelligent ultrasonic drivers, on-machine automated optical tool measurement technology, and ultrasonic machining technology.

The followings are the technical characteristics and application advantages:

  • For ultrasonic micro-drilling of fragile materials, the world’s smallest non-contact electrical energy transmission high-speed ultrasonic tool holder has been created.
  • A measurement system based on on-machine vision has been created to gauge the vibration amplitude of ultrasonic tools. With frequencies up to 50kHz, it can measure the two-dimensional (2D) vibration of the tooltip of ultrasonic instruments.
  • A 1kW high-power broadband ultrasonic driver was created by the research team, who also secured a Taiwan patent. It can control ultrasonic frequencies between 20 and 42 kHz. The high energy conversion efficiency of this unique ultrasonic driver is also over 95%, which is better than the typical market energy conversion efficiency of 90% or less.
  • Developed a smart tool holder that incorporates antennae, power control modules, Wi-Fi modules, IoT sensors, microcontrollers, and non-contact electric power transfer into the interior of the tool holder. The wireless electric power transfer technology is used to continuously power and recharge the tool holder while it is in use.

According to real testing findings from semiconductor industry end users, the developed ultrasonic machining technology may boost processing speed by more than two times as well as its tool life.

This technique had been applied in Taiwan’s domestic semiconductor supply chain companies’ mass production lines. Semiconductor supply chain businesses in Korea and Japan are also testing it.

Smart manufacturing plays a crucial role in driving operational excellence, agility, and innovation, allowing businesses to thrive in the digital era. It provides the basis for organisations to leverage the power of technology and capitalise on growth opportunities in the digital world when connectivity and data are available.

Also, it lets businesses optimise processes, make educated decisions, and find areas for development by leveraging real-time data and insights. Businesses may stay relevant, generate new revenue streams, and satisfy the ever-changing needs of customers in a quickly changing industry by embracing smart manufacturing practices.


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