Manufacturing

Research Group Members:

Dimitri Dimitrov
RPD/IAT Researcher & advisor
Research Groups:
RPD/IAT
Manufacturing

Theuns Dirkse van Schalkwyk
Senior Lecturer
Research Groups:
Manufacturing

Stephen Matope
Senior Lecturer
Research Groups:
Manufacturing

Tiaan Oosthuizen
Senior Lecturer
HEAD of RPD/IAT

Research Groups:
RPD/IAT
Manufacturing

André van der Merwe
Associate Professor
Research Groups:
Manufacturing

The range of advanced machines in the Rapid Product Development Laboratory (RPDLab) in the Department of Industrial Engineering can be utilised in the fields of reverse engineering, computer-aided design, quality control and rapid product development. This well-equipped Laboratory places it in an excellent position to make a giant contribution towards the tooling industry in South Africa.

The RPDLab already works closely with the tooling industry to expand skills and expertise and to improve competitiveness of manufacturers in especially the small, medium and micro industries. This is done by presenting workshops, industry days and short courses, as well as carrying out research and providing services to industry.

In 2004 the Toolmaking Association of South Africa (TASA) was established as a representative body for the South African tool, die and mould making industry. TASA was the big impetus behind the creation of a national programme aimed at strengthening the above-mentioned industry in South Africa. This is in line with the focus that the National Development Plan places on manufacturing in industry.

On order to expand expertise in the tooling industry, TASA provided a mandate to the National Tooling Initiative (NTIP), a non-profit initiative, to develop short courses for training and to establish centres where training can be presented. The excellent machinery and expertise in the RPDLab makes this facility ideally suited to be set up and operated as such a centre. Therefore, the RPDLab has become involved in the NTIP programme and is currently being organised and equipped to train artisans and toolmakers for industry. Future prospects include the presentation of two two-year programmes comprising tailored modules for the training of Master Artisans and Masters in Tooling.

The RPDLab has several partners, the two most important probably being the Institute for Advanced Tooling (IAT) and Fraunhofer IWU. The Institute for Advanced Tooling (Western Cape) is housed in the RPDLab and also contributes towards the acceleration and expansion of research and development in the tooling industry. Cooperation between industry and the RPDLab and its partners is excellent. This cooperation implies, firstly, that the RPDLab and its partners do not compete with industry, but that they specifically support industry with design, manufacturing and research. Secondly, the RPDLab provides industry access to its expensive machinery, which the small, medium and micro industries cannot afford to acquire.

Dr Tiaan Oosthuizen heads the research group in the RPDLab. The cutting-edge machinery in the RPDLab comprises a Hermle C40 5 Axis Milling Centre, an M2 Laser Cusing Machine, a DMG Mori 3 Axis CNC Milling Machine, an Agies Charmilles CUT20 P EDM Wire and an Agies SPU EDM Spark.

1.Technological and Experimental Base

2.Third Stream Funds

Devon Hagedorn-Hansen
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: The Effects of Selective Laser Melting Strategies on Titanium Hybrid Parts Research Area: Additive Manufacturing

Emad Uheida
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Incremental forming of titanium sheet

Francois Conradie
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Tungsten carbide tooling for light pass machining removal of alpha case from Ti-6Al-4V mill products

Liz Engelbrecht
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Carbide tool machinability of alternative titanium alloys for medical implants compared to existing alloys with adverse biocompatibility

Lourens Delport
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Milling induced shape deviation of thin-walled Ti6Al4V Components Research Area: Titanium Machining

Pieter Conradie
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Cost Modelling Process Planning Framework for Milling Ti-alloys Research Area: RPD Labs

Piotr Rokita
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Techno-economic study on titanium machining

Richard Girdwood
Research Group:
Titanium Manufacturing
Thesis Topic: Process Chain Optimisation of Intelligent Implants Research Area: Rapid Prototyping/Biomedical Engineering

1.Knowledge Generation

2.Human Capital Development

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