“The market of the die and mold industry in the Philippines remains limited and small despite its economic significance to the manufacturing industry. Die and Mold is a vital part of the manufacturing industry, the tool and die sector is a constant and indispensable ingredient to the industry’s success. This prompted the government and the local sector to engage in the project called “Establishment of a Die and Mold Solution Center (DMSC) in support of the Components and Parts Manufacturing Industry,” said Engr. Fred P. Liza, Chief Prototyping Division, DOST-MIRDC, and author of the article “Enhancing the Local Manufacturing Industry’s Competitiveness Through the Establishment of a Die and Metal Solution Center.”

This presentation was made during the “Science Nation Media Tour: AGHAM NA RAMDAM” on February 4, 2015, at the DOST-MIRDC’s at the DMSC Compound In Bicutan, Taguig City.

The establishment of the DMSC project generally aims to enhance the competitiveness of the local tool and die sector in support of the automotive industry through the provision of facilities, technology and manpower development. It specifically aims to focus on the acquisition of the needed technology and facilities to support the competitiveness in the localization of currently improved dies and molds.

This intervention was initiated by Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Mario G. Montejo and was formalized through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the DOST and the Philippine Die and Mold Association (PDMA) on April 16, 2012 in Quezon City.

The MOU specified in detail the different aspects of the project and designated the Metal and Industry Research and Development Center (MIRDC) as the official R&D station. The MOU signing is a leap not only to give the Makinarya at Teknolohiya para sa Bayan (MakiBayan) Program a strategic focus but will further strengthen the collaborative relationship of public and private sectors.

Consequent to the signing of MOU is the launching of the DMSC project in 2013 by the MIRDC in partnership with the PDMA. The effective implementation and realization of the objectives of the project requires careful planning and keen execution. To bring about the enhancement of the sector’s competitiveness, several activities are being undertaken relative to the implementation of the DMSC.

Expected outputs of the DMSC project consists of three main aspects: technology, facilities and manpower development. These were done by the parties involved in the project.

MIRDC had acquired identified technologies and facilities needed to localize imported dies, tools and molds with improved quality, reduced cost and/or shorter delivery lead time, as well as the facility aspects.

The technology aspect involves the acquisition of design and simulation software plastic mold injection, molds and stamping dies. Design optimization, through simulation, will be achieved by offering the translation of CAD into CAE and CAM.

On the other hand, the facility aspect refers to the acquisition of machines to complement and/or upgrade the present CNC machines at the MIRDC. These include CNC High Speed Machining Centers, 5 –axis CNC Multi-Tasking Machines, CNC EDM Sinker/Drill/Wirecut, LASER Welding Machine and Surface Grinders, among others.

Building is also part of this initiative to accommodate the new equipment acquired. Access to advanced dedicated technology and facilities on die and mold designing and making were provided and implemented to include the offering of common service facility for the local tool and die makers under a facility-sharing scheme at reasonable rates.
For the manpower development, new die and mold makers will be trained. Moreover, knowledge about best practices, techniques and technology of current professionals will be supplemented. These are being conducted in reference to basic die and mold-making as well as advanced technologies relevant to die and mold-making, particularly in high speed machining.

DMSC personnel are undergoing training which includes participating in benchmarking activities within and outside the country for the MIRDC to provide consultancy and training on specialized techniques and procedure relevant to tool, die and mold-making.

A review and update on the existing curriculum on die and mold designing and making to ensure the enhancement of innovative and creative capabilities of the trainees will be done by the MIRDC-PDMA Technical Working Group (TWG).

Local and foreign consultants will also be engaged to provide technical advisory services to die and mold shops around the country.

The collaboration of the MIRDC and the PDMA will result to the creation of various solutions that will bring about long-term benefits to the tool and die sector.

Continuous improvement through strategic collaboration, can possibly obtained faster and more effectively – for the benefit of the Philippine metals and engineering industries, said Engr. Liza. (PSciJourn MegaManila)