Tools for Algeria’s Tomorrow Are in the Garage
Often, innovation and creativity cascade off a single new technology or tool. Think about the impact of the printing press, the personal computer or the Internet. An example from today includes the portfolio of new Advanced Manufacturing tools that are transforming and “democratizing” the manufacturing process.
GE is leveraging the exciting potential of advanced manufacturing as part of the I.D.E.A. (Industry and Entrepreneurship Development in Algeria) initiative, which it has launched with Sonelgaz – the National Electricity and Gas Company. The goal of I.D.E.A. is to nurture local Algerian innovation in the energy-sector supply chain and foster Algerian talent for industrial jobs.
More specifically, I.D.E.A. is providing up to $200,000 in prize money to encourage suppliers, startups and entrepreneurs to find innovative manufacturing solutions to provide parts to GE Algeria Turbines (GEAT), a large industrial plant under construction that will produce advanced power generation equipment.
The two-phase I.D.E.A. competition invites Algerian companies to produce a stainless steel part, similar to those used in gas turbine combustion systems. In the first phase, companies submit schematics and production plans on how they will produce the part to demonstrate their manufacturing capabilities. Shortlisted candidates will then be invited in the second phase to actually produce the part.
Submissions can use either traditional or advanced manufacturing technologies.
To demonstrate the power and opportunities offered by advanced manufacturing in the context of the I.D.E.A. initiative, GE has brought its GE Garages workshop to Algeria. GE Garages uses real equipment – including 3D printers, CNC mills, laser cutters and injection molders – to provide hands-on demonstrations of how these tools and technologies are changing the nature of manufacturing. From idea development to 3D printing to product refinement, the workshop brings the concept of advanced manufacturing alive.
GE Garages is currently underway through Thursday at the Université des Sciences et Technologies d’Oran (The Science and Technology University in Oran). A previous presentation was held last month at the Palais des Expositions in Algiers.