Equpiment and Process Definitions

Blow Molding
The blow molding process is a well-developed molding technique, used mainly with products that have a uniform wall thickness and where the shape will be important. First, plastic granules are fed into a hopper and then heated to form a liquid plastic. The liquid is put into a mold and air pushes the plastic to the shape of the mold. When the mold is cooled it is removed. From Ehownow at www.ehow.com/
CNC Definition
CNC machines are the workhorses of the precision machining industry. CNC stands for Computer Numeric Control. CNC is an industry standard programming language designed specifically for controlling high-precision mills, lathes, cutting and grinding machines. It’s the progeny of the marriage between Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Machining (CAM).  From Ehownow at www.ehow.com/
3-D Printing
3D printing or additive manufacturing is a process of making three dimensional solid objects from a digital file. The creation of a 3D printed object is achieved using additive processes. In an additive process an object is created by laying down successive layers of material until the entire object is created. Each of these layers can be seen as a thinly sliced horizontal cross-section of the eventual object.
Injection Molding
Injection molding is the process by which a thermoplastic resin is injected into a mold by machines before cooling and hardening. The end result is a series of identically made plastic products. Injection molding can be used to make industrial items like car parts or smaller products such as sink plugs, camera parts or containers. From Ehownow at www.ehow.com/
Laser beam machining uses the energy in laser light to cut sheets of flat material, such as metal, wood, plastic and cloth. The lasers come in a range of power levels, each suited to machine specific materials. Computer software controls where the laser does its cutting.  From Ehownow at www.ehow.com/
Machining can be defined as the process of removing material from a work piece in the form of chips. The term metal cutting is used when the material is metallic. Most machining has very low set-up cost compared to forming, molding, and casting processes. However, machining is much more expensive for high volumes. Machining is necessary where tight tolerances on dimensions and finishes are required.  Machining terms are drilling, turning, milling, grinding, and chip formation.  From:  http://www.efunda.com/processes/machining/machin_intro.cfm
Pneumatics is a section of technology that deals with the study and application of pressurized gas to produce mechanical motion.  Pneumatic systems, used extensively in industry and factories, are commonly plumbed with compressed air or compressed inert gases. This is because a centrally located and electrically powered compressor, that powers cylinders and other pneumatic devices through solenoid valves, can often provide motive power in a cheaper, safer, more flexible, and more reliable way than a large number of electric motors and actuators. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pneumatics
Recycled Content Manufacturing
We have listed some of the manufacturers in Humboldt who make their product from discarded materials or pre-processed feedstock (ingredients that go together to make a product).  They include: materials that would normally be sent to the landfill (wasted), sent long distances to be recycled (costly), or languish in a business’s store room (unused).  The recycled content manufacturer identifies these materials and uses them in their manufacturing process.
These are materials that have been captured for reuse either in the original form or re-used in a modified way. Reusables are found in a range of industrial settings and creative ways.The motivation for using recycled material or reusables is diverse:  saving energy, saving money on feedstock, saving money on disposal, making a green product, reduce climate change impact, personally motivated, and more. Below are a few of these companies.
Thermoforming is a manufacturing process widely used for the packaging of consumer products and to fabricate large items such as bathtubs, contoured skylights, and internal door liners for refrigerators. The process consists of two main steps: heating and forming. The process involves heating a plastic sheet to a pliable forming temperature, forming it to a specific shape in a mold, and then trimming it in order to create a usable product. From www.sinotech.com
Zero Waste Companies
Zero Waste means designing and managing products and processes to systematically avoid and eliminate the volume and toxicity of waste and materials, conserve and recover all resources, and not burn or bury them. Implementing Zero Waste will eliminate all discharges to land, water or air that are a threat to planetary, human, animal or plant health.” [Taken from the Zero Waste Humboldt website, http://www.zerowastehumboldt.org, adapted from Zero Waste International Alliance, 2009.]

This type of manufacturing incorporates both LEAN and GREEN manufacturing processes with the emphasis on preventing waste and through innovation and good planning strengthens the operation and marketability of the company.