Every manufacturer wants to produce higher quality goods that can command better prices and yield more margins. Higher margins with lower cost is one of the strongest drivers for CAM software market growth. In an article published on Modern Machine Shop, some of the technological trends pushing CAM market growth include a higher rate of multi-axis and multifunctional machining, and increased use of continuous five-axis machining and high speed cutting. These factors indicate manufacturers are moving towards more advanced and automated CAM systems.
CAM software continues to become more automated, more tightly integrated with design software, and easier to use. The five factors driving adoption of advanced and automation CAM software are:
1. Machine tools increasing in complexity:
Machine tools continue to become more advanced and complex as manufacturers look for every opportunity to reduce cost and improve product quality. Advanced, automated CAD/CAM software meets this need by synchronizing with complex machine tool capabilities and optimizing their usage.
Performing milling and turning operations on a single tool, and often in a single setup, typically results in increased productivity, faster turnaround, reduced scrap, and improved part quality. As a result, parts that previously required multiple turning and milling machines are now being produced on a single machine. This huge time savings requires the capabilities found in advanced, automated CAM software, but the savings in setup time and the increase in production efficiency can be significant.
Along with multi-functional machines, continuous five-axis machining is becoming popular in many industries. The growing use of such machines will continue to drive demand in CAM functionality to support the growing levels of flexibility and complexity.
2. Onshoring of manufacturing:
Many organizations have started moving their manufacturing operations back to North America and Europe as their manufacturing operations are becoming more efficient and labor costs in outsourced countries have started increasing. Manufacturers today have recognized that further automation overcomes the advantage of low-labor economies. Onshoring also eliminates time delays and reduces risks in the supply chain, which were painfully highlighted during the COVID-19 peak period.
To compete with high quality product, manufacturers in the developed world strive to continue narrowing process variances by automating repetitive tasks to ensure consistency through various means including the use of advanced CAD/CAM software.
2. Aesthetic product design:
Demand for more aesthetic product designs that involve complex shapes continues to drive the need for advanced CAD/CAM software that can model complex shapes and create sophisticated, efficient NC programs.
3. Higher quality and greater margins:
Every manufacturer is looking to produce higher quality goods that can command higher prices and yield better margins. These highly finished and high-quality products typically require advanced manufacturing and machines that in turn requires advanced CAM software for manufacturing process control. A skilled labor shortage in developed countries drives the need to capture knowledge and automate as much of the machining process as possible using CAM software.
4. Speed (High speed machining)
Speed in toolpath generation, along with the tool path’s ability to provide fast machining, is becoming increasingly important. A CAM system supporting high speed machining is required to provide fast transfer of data, smooth tool movement, a constant chip load to maximize the life of the cutter, and other features necessary to produce high-quality finish.
5. What does the future hold?
Software should do more, and the user should do less.
At HCL, we know that CAMWorks is the sophisticated, advanced, automated CAM software that resolves these issues, because we designed the product to answer those key quality drivers. We believe that software should work hard for a team, so that resources and costs are freed up for innovation.
With the continuing demand for ease of use and increased productivity, greater automation is being embedded into all aspects of CAM system, from the user interface to post processors. Increased automation would make the software easier to learn and use and more productive for the user.
To find out more about how HCL CAMWorks automates and handles advanced machining requirements, request CAMWorks live demo