THE USE OF NUMERICALLY CONTROLLED MACHINE TOOLS IN R.A.E. WORKSHOPS.
ROYAL AIRCRAFT ESTABLISHMENT FARNBOROUGH (ENGLAND)
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The report is an account of the introduction and use of numerically-controlled machine tools in the Workshops Department of R.A.E. up to December 1966 with examples, in the form of appendices, of work carried out on each of the machines. These examples cover the field of two-dimensional position control, two-dimensional continuous control and the more sophisticated three-dimensional contoured shapes with initial use being concentrated on manufacture and measurement of aerodynamic models and their associated equipment for testing in the Establishments various Wind Tunnels. Advantages from this form of control have subsequently led to the further use of numerically controlled machines for more orthodox engineering manufacture. These advantages in outweighing the disadvantages make it inevitable that N.C. will progressively replace to a larger extent the manually operated machines albeit by a fewer number. The logical trend of N.C. making possible a reduction in the amount of inspection of components is mentioned with examples of where this has already happened. The impact of N.C. on Staff and Maintenance of Machine Tools is also recorded. Author
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