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Design for Tomorrow

IMTS Commitments Reflect Manufacturing Surge

By Mike Botta

January 16, 2012 – International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) organizers reported last week that exhibitor numbers and space commitments are up 5 and 10 percent, respectively, versus last time around, another positive sign for manufacturing.

Several reports lately seem to indicate there’s some real upward momentum for the sector.

Press Reports

As The New York Times earlier this month wrote, “For the first time in many years, manufacturing stands out as an area of strength in the American economy.”

The Wall Street Journal pointed to growing global competitiveness among U.S. manufacturers, citing lower labor and energy costs, aided by the weak dollar.

Then, late last week the Association for Manufacturing Technology, sponsor and organizer of the 29th IMTS, said it already had contracted with 1,030 exhibitors covering more than 1.1 million square feet of space, an increase over 2010.

IMTS runs September 10-15, 2012 at the massive McCormick Place in downtown Chicago.

‘Be There’

“This shows that manufacturing is going great guns and that the show is mirroring the market conditions,” Peter Eelman, VP of exhibitions and communications for IMTS, said. “We are working with McCormick Place to release additional exhibit space in January 2012 to accommodate all companies that wish to exhibit.”

With “Be There” as this year’s official program theme, IMTS is expected to attract more than 82,000 attendees from 120+ countries.

Key Pavilions

Exhibitors will display their equipment in several product category pavilions:
--- Metal Cutting: from machining centers and assembly automation to flexible manufacturing systems and lathes.

--- Tooling & Workholding Systems: jigs, fixtures, cutting tools of all types and related accessories.

--- Metal Forming & Fabricating/Laser Processes: waterjet, plasma-arc and laser systems, welding equipment, heat treating.

--- Other pavilions include: Abrasive Machining/Sawing/Finishing; Controls & CAD–CAM; EDM; Gear Generation; Machine Components/Cleaning/Environmental and Quality Assurance.

Additional information, including hotel and registration guidelines for IMTS 2012, is available through

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