Computer-Aided Manufacturing

Analog device used to measure vibration and shock. Can be based on various physical phenomenon (e.g., capacitive, piezoresistive, piezoelctric).
Assembly Operation
Joins two or more components to create a new entity, which is called an assembly, subassembly, or some other term that refers to the specific joining process.
Automated Guided Vehicle System
A material handling system that uses independently operated, self-propelled vehicles guided along defined pathways.
Automated Systems
System in which a process is performed by a machine without the direct participation of a human worker.
Automatic Pallet Changer
Used to exchange pallet fixtures between the machine tool worktable and the load/unload position.
Batch Production
Occurs when the materials are processed in finite amounts or quantities.
Boolean Algebra
Its original purpose was to provide a symbolic means of testing whether complex statements of logic were TRUE or FALSE. Was shown to be useful in digital logic systems.
CAD/CAM System
A computer interactive graphics system equipped with software to accomplish certain tasks in design and manufacturing and to integrate the design and manufacturing functions.
Cellular Manufacturing
The processing or assembly of different parts or products is accomplished in cells consisting of several workstations or machines.
Closed Loop Control System
System in which the output variable is compared with an input parameter, and any difference between the two is used to drive the output into agreement with the input.
Computer Integrated Manufacturing
Denotes the pervasive use of computer systems to design the products, plan the production, control the operations, and perform the various information-processing functions needed in a manufacturing firm.
Computer Numerical Control
An NC system whose MCU is based on a dedicated microcomputer rather than on a hard-wired controller.
Computer-Aided Design
Denotes the use of computer systems to support the product design function.
Computer-Aided Manufacturing
Denotes the use of computer systems to perform functions related to manufacturing engineering, such as process planning and numerical control part programming.
Continuous Production
Occurs when the production equipment is used exclusively for the given product, and the output of the product is uninterrupted.
Continuous Variable
One that is uninterrupted as time proceeds, at least during the manufacturing operation.
A mechanical apparatus for moving items or bulk materials, usually inside a facility.
Coordinate Measuring Machine
An inspection machine used for measuring or checking dimensions of a part.
Dead Reckoning
The capability of a vehicle to follow a given route in the absence of a defined pathway in the floor.
Discrete Variable
One that can take on only certain values within a given range.
Enterprise-Resource Planning
Refers to a computer software system that achieves company-wide integration of not only factory data but of all the other data required to execute the business functions of the organization.
Error Recovery
Concerned with applying the necessary corrective action to overcome the error and bring the system back to normal operation.
External Interrupts
External to the system; the include process-initiated interrupts and operator inputs.
External Logistics
Concerned with transportation and related activities that occur outside of a facility.
Float Transducer
Float attached to lever arm. Pivoting movement of lever arm can be used to measure liquid level in vessel (analog device) or to activate contact switch (binary device).
Flow Rate
The amount of material moved per unit time.
Index of Performance
The performance measure of the process; must be calculated based on several output variables of the process.
Input Interlock
A signal that originates from an external device (e.g., a limit switch, sensor, or production machine) and that is sent to the controller.
Interrupt System
A computer control feature that permits the execution of the current program to be suspended to execute another program or subroutine in response to an incoming signal indicating a higher priority event.
Lean Production
Operating the factory with the minimum possible resources and yet maximizing the amount of work that is accomplished with these resources.
Limit Switch
Binary contact sensor in which lever arm or pushbutton closes (or opens) an electrical contact.
Machine Cell
This series of manually operated production machines and workstations often laid out in a U-shaped configuration. It performs a sequence of operations on a family of parts or products that are similar but not identical.
Machining Center
A machine tool capable of performing multiple machine operations on a single workpiece in one setup.
Manual Work Systems
Consists of one or more workers performing one or more tasks without the aid of powered tools.
Manufacturing System
A collection of integrated equipment designed for some special mission, such as machining a defined part family or assembling a certain product.
Material Handling
The movement, storage, protection and control of materials throughout the manufacturing and distribution process including their consumption and disposal.
Multiple-Level Interrupt System
Has a normal operating mode plus more than one interrupt level.
NC Turning Center
Capable of performing various turning and related operations, contour turning, and automatic tool indexing, all under computer control.
Network Diagram
Consists of nodes and arrows, and the arrows indicate relationships among the nodes.
On-Board Vehicle Sensing
Uses one or more sensors on each vehicle to detect the presence of other vehicles and obstacles ahead on the guide path.
Optical Encoder
A device for measuring rotational speed that consists of a light source and a photodetector on either side of a disk.
Overhead Trolley Conveyor
Consists of multiple trolleys, usually equally spaced along a fixed track.
Pallet Fixture
A workholder that is designed to be transported by the material handling system.
Part-Shaping Operations
Apply mechanical force and/or heat or other forms and combinations of energy to change the geometry of the work material.
Analog position sensor consisting of resistor and contact slider. Position of slider on resistor determines measured resistance. Available for both linear and rotational (angular) measurements.
The manufacturing operation that is performed on a work unit.
Process Parameters
Inputs to the process, such as temperature setting of a furnace, coordinate axis value in a positioning system, valve opened or closed in a fluid flow system, and motor on or off.
Product Variety
The different product designs or types that are produced in a plant.
Programmable Logic Controller
A microcomputer-based controller that uses stored instructions in programmable memory to implement logic, sequencing, timing, counting, and arithmetic functions through digital or analog input/output (I/O) modules, for controlling machines and processes.
Proximity Switch
Binary noncontact sensor is triggered when nearby object induces changes in electromagnetic field. Can be based on any of several physical principles, including inductance, capacitance, ultrasonics, and optics.
Quantitative Metrics
Provide a company with the means to track performance in successive periods (e.g., months and years), try out new technologies and new systems to determine their merits, identify problems with performance, compare alternative methods, and make good decisions.
Random Errors
Occur as a result of the normal stochastic nature of the process.
Real-Time Controller
A controller that is able to respond to the process within a short enough time period that process performance is not degraded.
A measure of the robot's ability to position its end-of-wrist at a previously taught point in the work volume.
Safety Monitoring
An automated system involves the use of sensors to track the system's operation and identify conditions and events that are unsafe or potentially unsafe.
Set Point
Represents the desired value of the output.
Single Station Cell
A common situation is one worker tending one production machine that operates on semi-automatic cycle.
Single-Level Interrupt System
Has only two modes of operation: normal mode and interrupt mode.
Supervisory Control (Process Industries)
Denotes a control system that manages the activities of a number of integrated unit operations to achieve certain economic objectives for the process.
Analog device consisting of DC generator that produces an electrical voltage proportional to rotational speed.
Tactile Sensor
Measuring device that indicates physical contact between two objects. Can be based on any of several physical devices such as electrical contact (for conducting materials) and piezoelectric effect.
Truth Table
A tabulation of all of the combinations of input values to the corresponding logical output values.
Unit Load
The mass that is to be moved or otherwise handled at one time.
Variable Routing
Work units are transported through a variety of different station sequences.
The amount of processing or assembly work accomplished by the system, expressed in terms of the time required to perform the work.
A location in the factory where some well-defined task or operation is accomplished by an automated machine, a worker-and-machine combination, or a worker using hand tools and/or portable powered tools.
Supervisory Control (Discrete Manufacturing)
The control system that directs and coordinates the activities of several interacting pieces of equipment in a manufacturing cell or system, such as a group of machines interconnected by a material handling system.