Technology Market for clamping micro-workpieces grows bigger

Editor: Eric Culp

Small workpieces are getting even smaller, a fact confronting suppliers of clamping systems. In principle, if it can be machined, it can be clamped. However, customer-specific solutions are often required to achieve the needed accuracy in run-out and clamping.

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The Fine Tooling System is a clamping chuck for small dimensions.
The Fine Tooling System is a clamping chuck for small dimensions.
(Photo: Erowa)

The world has become smaller, a shift measurable in the perceived closeness created by communications technology or in the world of processing.

See: EMO indicates strong demand for machine tools

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Where the trend towards miniaturisation becomes a factor, those sectors and the production world must adapt. The application markets are not huge, but they are attractive.

Micro-workholding: Living up to its potential?

Urs Canonica, marketing and press relations at Erowa in Büron, Switzerland, said: “In medical and micro-clamping technology we see a truly great potential.” A manufacturer like Erowa probably invests in this area because the watch industry is one of their biggest customers for micro-clamping.

Heinold Kostner, manager of product and portfolio management in clamping technology at Schunk in Lauffen, Germany, said that besides the watch and jewellery industry and medical and dental technology, mould construction and the optics industry are target groups. In all relevant sectors, the number of applications with micro-machining has reportedly risen enormously.