2013 – Year In Review


STIMS Institute Inc., USA

(Science based Technology, Innovation and Management Solutions)

2013 – Year in Review

 Our sincere thanks to the many people for their professional support, encouragement and the opportunities for collaboration. The past two and a half years has been a time of an incredible journey, with many promising outcomes. Like a farmer who carefully tends to the seedlings to grow the orchard, we intend to build on many of the initiatives reported here in the coming years.

Our very best wisher to each of you and every one in your family for a Happy Holiday Season and the very best of health, happiness, peace and joy in the coming New Year! Sincerely

Dr. K. (Subbu) Subramanian, President, STIMS Institute Inc.

Dec. 27, 2013

Year End Update:

For a new start-up , our company is already 2.5 Years old! Our work and developments are focused on Knowledge Integration. Our outputs can be broadly grouped as follows:

  • Innovation in manufacturing processes (and their commercial exploitation)
  • Enhancing effectiveness of professional workers and organizational development for higher levels of Innovation.
  • Collaboration across diverse resources (linked through a common need) through System Thinking and Transformational Skills to foster eco-systems for physical technology driven innovation.

Following are a few highlights from the year 2013: 

1.     Restructured a small machine tool company, which is now poised for substantial growth in domestic and export markets.

 In this company

  1. Grinding process is no longer a “black box”
  2. Grinding process measurement and analysis tools are used as a means for customer problem solving :
    1. Reduce non-value added time:
  • Reduce load / Unload time
  • Reduce long spark out time
  • Utilize full capability of the machine tool
  • Re-balance the cycle and reduce cycle time

3. Reduce / Eliminate process problems:

  • Identify and correct wheel glazing issues
  • Eliminate “burn” on components
  • Identify and correct “chatter” problems
  • Identify motor tuning issues and correct for them
  • Reduce cycle time to keep up with single part production

4. Increased confidence to offer new value added products and solutions for customers based on total cost savings and to gain reward for the “value” delivered.

2.     Collaborative research program to develop Next Generation Precision Grinding Machines:

  1. This unique collaborative research imitative integrates the skills and resources across a diverse set of resources (Academic – IIT- Chennai, Industry – MGTL, industry Govt. collaborative resource: AMTTF and several user companies) to a common goal: Develop a methodology for next generation precision grinding solutions to achieve higher precision components.
  2. Students participating in this project are getting hands-on, real world experience, an important element of the three-fold education required for the 21st century jobs and careers.


3. Plans are in progress to initiate a similar collaborative project at IIT – Delhi and    a few industrial partners.

3. Workshop on System Approach for Precision Components Manufacturing: Grinding Processes:

  1. For the second year in row, this workshop has been offered to a group of senior engineers and managers from manufacturing industry.
  2. Few comments from the year 2013 batch of trainees:
  • We found the training course very useful. The System approach has given end to end understanding of the grinding process.
  • The whole learning curve has drastically come down. Otherwise it would have taken very long time to get this much knowledge or information through our experience.
  • Definitely, I find the course very useful for my job as it helps the sales person like me in many ways. I am using manufacturing process as a system as one of the important tool in my own way to show how important it is in selecting the machine tool. I explain to them that machine tool is very important whose basic characteristics can’t be changed like the process parameters as and when it is required. I noticed that this creates a new awareness in the customers mind about the machine tool and the care required in the selection and use.
  • The course was pretty useful, because of the Analytical approach adopted in learning to understand Grinding process & associated problems.

3. This course is offered as a collaborative program with resources from IMTMA – a trade association, MGTL – a machine tool company, Saint-Gobain Abrasives; Toyoda and Musashi – supplier/user companies) with a simultaneous and coordinated emphasis on Science/Engineering and Management issues pertinent to the manufacturing processes.

4.     Focus on the education to foster System Thinking and Transformational Skills has resulted in the following  outcome:

  1. A new book co-authored by Prof. Stinivasa Rangan has been released through the ASME Press: https://stimsinstitute.com/2013/07/17/learn-to-swim-against-the-tide-of-binary-economy/
  2. A series of lectures were delivered at MIT, IIT – Chennai, BBDIT, AKGCE, IIT – Delhi, ….. For highlights of these lectures: http://alum.mit.edu/students/alumni-talks?destination=node/20709#Dr
  3. Several publications have highlighted the need for Transformational skills as part of the education for success in the 21st century economy:





5.     Through collaborations already in place, next year we have plans to expand our outreach through additional programs in USA, Ireland, China and Japan.

6.     Targeted support to clients through special projects:

  1. Collaboration with BBA http://www.bbizadvisors.com/mission.html
  2. Faculty team at MIT Short summer program on Tribology: http://web.mit.edu/professional/short-programs/courses/designing_tribological_systems.html
  3. An advanced course in Operations Management at SNHU. This course explored system thinking and project based learning for the application of OM tools.
  4. A course on System Approach for Engineers is now fully developed and offered as a regular course at TCE, Madurai, India. This course is taught by an industry/academic team.
  5. A two day work shop on System Thinking and Transformational Skills offered to a group of senior managers in a large company. The goal is to increase the PE-Score across the organization. https://stimsinstitute.com/2013/12/03/what-is-your-professional-effectiveness-pe-score/
  6. Work is in progress through MassMEP, to develop capabilities for small and medium size manufacturers to re-focus their efforts for quantum innovation through New Products, New Processes and New Applications/USE. This should lead to their exploitation of core capabilities, rather than rely on incremental improvements through plug and play IT solutions alone. http://www.telesian.com/marketing/vpr/massmac/mac132806-01.cfm

As we look around for the resources available for training and development of individual professionals, they are generally provided by the organizational and leadership development consultants with expertise in Psychology and Social skills. Strategy and operations management consultants are largely focused on senior managers and corporate leadership. R&D projects and their support come largely from technical specialists. Then there are the innumerable consultants offering plug and play IT solutions. Yet the knowledge required for innovation has to be drawn from technical skills, managerial entrepreneurship as well as human centered inter-personal skills. The goal of the STIMS Institute is to create and foster models for Innovation and Knowledge Integration that also builds bridges across these different silos. We welcome any and all opportunities in this journey for progress.