Based on the need for more complex and sophisticated aircraft parts, the Computer Numerical Control (CNC) concept was first introduced to advance the machineries in the aircraft industries shortly after World War II. The CNC process is used by the manufacturing sector to control a machine or a tool using a programmable computer. Today, CNC machining is widespread; it dominates the manufacturing sector, allowing for a considerable jump in productivity around the world. With the advancement of CNC technology, we’ve seen many advancements applied beyond the CNC industry, such as simplified programming language, improved engine communications, and customization. As CNC technology continues to evolve, we can say without a doubt, that the most exciting progression of CNC is yet to come.
The Integration of the Best of Two Worlds
Due to the nature of the concept, CNC programs used to be limited to only control the CNC machines that aid manufacturing processes throughout history. As time has passed, manufacturers have moved towards having a centralized system such as Enterprise Resources Planning software to manage resources and to track the productivity of machines. The next step that manufacturers are looking to embrace is to adopt an increasingly interconnected system that will streamline CNC machines with other machines and procedures. Commonly, CNC machines and manufacturing robots are closely paired in the manufacturing line due CNC’s strength in processing raw materials and robots’ capability in moving and packing produced goods. Thus, there are numerous attempts and collaborations between CNC developers, machine buildings, and robot manufacturers to create a simpler programming languages and better interaction between CNC machines and robots. For example, collaboration with CNC developers Siemens and robotic supplier KUKA has produced an interface that allows CNC operator to control both CNC machines and robots from a single control panel. With many more collaborations to come, it is exciting to see the progress that will elevate efficiency in utilizing the CNC.
Parts and Tools for All
Another notable advancement is the personalization of CNC Machining. Over the years, CNC 3D printers have made prominent progress, allowing individuals to tailor make any simple part like a square board to a complex tool such as a circuit board. This astonishing development is accompanied by a drastic cost decrease that enables the general population to acquire new technology or machines at low prices. Furthermore, as the technology advances, the size of a CNC 3D printer has also shrunk to the extent that it could now be placed inside a working space comfortably. With this technological breakthrough, individuals can now product customized tools with cost effectiveness at the comfort of their office or home; the progress in CNC 3D printing will forever alter industries around the world.
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