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Chapter 25. Introduction to Mechanical D... > Manufacturing Concurrent Engineering

Manufacturing Concurrent Engineering

The 3D files created in Mechanical Desktop are not just used for prototyping. In fact, a growing number of manufacturers such as tool shops, sheet metal companies, and machine part manufacturers are capable, with the use of CAM (computer-aided manufacturing) software, to take your 3D files exported into their specific CAM format. A definite advantage of this is that these manufacturers can use the parameters already saved in your 3D model files to manufacture the parts using CNC (Computer Numerical Control)-related machinery. This process is described in the next section, and is basically the beginning of what is known as concurrent engineering.

Computer Numerical Control (CNC)

A very simple explanation of CNC machinery is that a manufacturing machine, such as a lathe or a mill, can be programmed to complete the tasks normally carried out by a skilled machine operator automatically. These machines read data that is programmed directly into the machine by the operator. CNC machinery also interprets data directly from 3D files, allowing the CNC operator to input the machining data to manufacture the part. This process can be defined as concurrent engineering, where the part can be designed and quickly generated.


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