Preparing the Engineers of Tomorrow with the Technology of Today
Purdue University in West Layfayette, Indiana is recognized around the world for excellence in education. The Engineering Technology department is no exception, incorporating the manufacturing industry’s latest technology and innovation to ensure that graduates are well prepared for the challenges of a highly competitive field.
One of the most important subjects taught in the Purdue School of Technology’s Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET) Department and Computer Integrated Manufacturing Technology (CIMT) curriculum is numerical control and computerized numerical control programming. The use of NC technology has spread across all manufacturing disciplines. Plastics, composites, and traditional metal parts fabrication all use NC machining technology. Beyond classroom instruction in NC machining, Purdue provides its engineering students access to the latest hardware and software. Modern CAD/CAM systems, machine tools, injection molding equipment, even metal casting facilities are available. To verify NC programs, students and instructors use VERICUT.
Hands-on Learning and Increased Safety: Before obtaining VERICUT, education in modern NC technology was somewhat limited. Today, rather than just listening to an instructor’s description of cutter motion and machining technique, students watch the technique simulated on the computer.
Since student access to NC machine tools is limited by safety and machine availability issues, it is important that students have the opportunity to test their programs without using an NC machine tool. VERICUT provides immediate feedback while still in the programming stage so students are able to spend more time working with CAM systems and improving their programming skills.
Flying shrapnel from shattered cutting tools and components is avoided by using VERICUT to test student programs before they are run on NC machines. Neither students, instructors, nor machine tools are endangered when NC programs are tested on the computer—the only consequence of a major programming error during a VERICUT simulation is a lower grade and possibly a bruised ego.
Cutting Expenses & Saving Time: One universal truth in education is that it costs money—and education in manufacturing systems is especially expensive. The MET and CIMT programs at Purdue use VERICUT to reduce expenses and keep their equipment in top working order.
Each time an error occurs while machining, it costs the department money. Damaged parts, fixtures, and cutting tools must either be repaired or scrapped. Repairs to the machine tool are expensive and detract from the time students can observe the machining process. By eliminating errors, VERICUT minimizes the amount of money the university spends on these costs.
Reading, analyzing, and interpreting G-code tool paths is a time-consuming task. It is difficult for an instructor to evaluate every student’s NC program and still have time for instruction and individual consultation. Using VERICUT instructors can more quickly evaluate programs, giving them more time to spend with students.
Students are the Winners: For all these reasons, VERICUT is an integral part of Purdue’s efforts to help students better understand the machining process, improve their skills, and be better prepared for careers in manufacturing engineering.