Zone: CAD, CAM and Related Software

OVERVIEW: CAM Software is used to generate machining programs corresponding to part designs. Short for “computer-aided manufacturing,” CAM creates these programs for CNC machine tools including machining centers, lathes and EDM machines. Sometimes, machining programs can be written and input manually, right at the machine’s control. However, if the workpiece geometry is at all complex, or if the machined features are numerous, then generally CAM software is essential for generating the program both accurately and quickly. In general, CAM development has proceeded along two different tracks. Geometry-based CAM systems used in die/mold machining and other applications focus on complex milled geometries. Algorithms provide specific and efficient ways for machining complex geometries with both high precision and long tool life. By contrast, feature-based CAM systems are generally used in the production machining of geometrically simpler components. These latter CAM systems are often engineered to automate otherwise repetitive programming tasks such as assigning similar tools to similar features.

Featured Zone Content

Handling Machining Complexity with CAM

With the increase in demand for closer tolerances on difficult-to-machine parts, shops look to improve efficiency through simplified processes....MORE

Reengineering of a CAM Engine

Software suppliers are doing their part in meeting the programming demands of multitasking operations for complex parts....MORE

Software Creates Perfect Tool Paths for Five-Axis Machining

A week’s programming with Edgecam CNC software provides a U.K. manufacturer of orthopaedic instruments with 12 weeks of machining time for its highly complex products....MORE

Automate Programming with CAM

Even for those shops still manually programming their simple parts on Swiss machines, there are compelling reasons to automate the programming process now. ...MORE

robot holds turbine blade

Adaptive Machining Makes a Robot More Productive

This system for machining and polishing turbine blades shows the value of software for inspection, toolpath calculations and adaptive machining working together. ...MORE

CGTech Vericut simulates G code

Software Reduces Crashes on New Manufacturing Equipment

Despite new technology investments, Micro-Mechanics Holdings was still experiencing high software crash potential. Switching to CGTech's Vericut NC verification software resulted in increased efficiency and enabled crash-free, lights-out operation. ...MORE

MachineWorks for hybrid additive subtractive machining

Simulation Software Adds Functionality for Hybrid Machining Centers

MachineWorks Software’s flagship program offers functionality for the simulation of additive and subtractive manufacturing processes for use with hybrid machining centers. ...MORE

Software Update Includes Tool to Ease Job Cost Calculation

Hypertherm has released version 11.1 of its ProNest 2015 CAD/CAM software featuring a quoting tool that can calculate per-part and total job costs, among other updates. ...MORE

Esprit 2015 Helps Reduce Cycle Time

DP Technology Corp.’s Esprit 2015 accelerates the machining process by providing five-axis machining cycles that reduce cycle time. ...MORE