Astronauts to headline SME events


Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin will headline The Total Manufacturing Experience at the Los Angeles Convention Center on March 27. An SME member, Aldrin will present an award to the winning team of the WESTEC Manufacturing Challenge. At the subsequent "Sky's the Limit" reception, Aldrin will talk about his passion for space and NASA's new technologies.

Astronaut Sally Ride, the first American woman in space, will appear at the Educator Summit VIP Dinner on Wednesday, March 29. Her company Sally Ride Science is dedicated to supporting girls' interests in math, science and technology.

The Total Manufacturing Experience takes place March 27-30 in Los Angeles. Attendees will be immersed in a 360-degree learning experience, highlighting new technology applications, continuous improvement, automation and assembly and more. Participants will move from classroom, to exhibit floor, to networking, professional development, and industry recognition activities.

The SME International Awards Gala on Tuesday, March 28 at 7 p.m. pays tribute to those who have contributed significantly to the manufacturing industries through technology, process, design, research and more. Dr. Ronald Sugar, chairman, CEO and president, Northrop Grumman Corporation, will be recognized as the 2006 SME Honorary Member.

WESTEC 2006 Advanced Productivity Exposition, will feature the latest manufacturing equipment reflecting emerging technologies. Exhibitors include leading equipment and tooling manufacturers, regional distributors, technology products and supplier services from 150 categories representing 2,500 international product lines. WESTEC also includes a Technology Theater, and a Product and Process Design & Management Pavilion-featuring free "Hot Topics" presentations on lean manufacturing and other process management issues. A Student Summit will introduce young people to the exciting possibilities of a career in manufacturing.

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