This month, Chicago saw the demise of the NCC – at least in its present form, and the expansion of the Advanced Manufacturing Systems event. December sees AMS moving west to Anaheim, California followed by AMS Europe which is set to be staged in Geneva in February, and two months later the event, organised by Reed International’s Cahners, will be back at Chicago. Reasons for the emergence of Computer Integrated Manufacturing exhibitions are not hard to find. Last month’s event attracted twice the number of exhibitors, speakers and visitors as the 1986 staging, and the industry forecasts a 50% per annum growth rate in factory automation systems generating a $30,000m market place within the next two to three years. International management consultancy Arthur Andersen is doing all it can to make its presence felt in the computer-integrated manufacturing market – for the second year running, the centrepiece of the Chicago show was the Arthur Andersen Impact demonstration which brought together companies such as IBM, Intel and Tandem to produce a fully integrated, automated factory line. Much of the 24,000 square feet Impact demonstration will now make a short trip to be put on show at the newly established BIRL facility at Evanston University Research Park near Chicago.