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Engaging Industry In Lab Based Manufacturing Education: Rpm At Georgia Tech

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1997 Annual Conference


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Publication Date

June 15, 1997

Start Date

June 15, 1997

End Date

June 18, 1997



Page Count


Page Numbers

2.166.1 - 2.166.5



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Paper Authors

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Thomas W. Graver

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Leon F. McGinnis

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David W. Rosen

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1463

Engaging Industry in Lab-Based Manufacturing Education: RPM at Georgia Tech

Thomas W. Graver, Leon F. McGinnis, David W. Rosen Georgia Institute of Technology

Abstract Leading edge manufacturing technologies present major challenges in education, both for degree students and for continuing education. Creating and maintaining the necessary instructional facilities can easily overwhelm typical university budgets. At Georgia Tech, a unique university/industry partnership has been formed to create and sustain a laboratory for Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing (RPM), focused primarily on education. This paper will describe the development and implementation of the partnership, and its prospects for the future.

1. What is RPM? Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing (RPM) is an emerging collection of materials and process technologies, design and processing methodologies, and business practices and relationships, which together shorten product development cycles, improve product designs, and reduce product development costs. RPM is often associated with additive fabrication processes, such as stereolithography or selective laser sintering, and includes many other prototyping technologies, as well as such conventional processes as CNC machining, and a host of computer-based design, engineering, and analysis tools. RPM is used by leading edge companies in a variety of industries, including automotive, aerospace, telecommunication, industrial machinery, and medical devices.

Companies that are potential adopters of RPM and students who may need to work with RPM share a need for information and education that enables and advances RPM deployment. RPM is one of the fastest growing areas of manufacturing technology today. RPM holds the promise of saving both time and money in bringing new products to market. Other key technologies, including data handling, global networking, CAD, CAM, CAE, CNC machining, investment casting, RTV molding and virtual prototyping, all come together around RPM. But only a few companies are reaping the full benefits of the RPM and its associated technologies. Even companies already using RPM are struggling to keep up with the rate of change, and few students are familiar with RPM and its benefits.

2. Why is RPM Important for Georgia Tech? Georgia Tech has made a major institutional commitment to manufacturing research and education, as evidenced by both facilities and programs. The Computer Integrated Manufacturing Systems Program (CIMS) was established in 1983, is a recipient of SME’s LEAD award, and has over 600 alumni. The Manufacturing Research Center (MARC) was established in 1988, occupies a 100,000 square foot facility, and is the focal point for interdisciplinary manufacturing research on campus. Our goal is to provide students an opportunity for exposure

Graver, T. W., & McGinnis, L. F., & Rosen, D. W. (1997, June), Engaging Industry In Lab Based Manufacturing Education: Rpm At Georgia Tech Paper presented at 1997 Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 10.18260/1-2--6535

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