CNC machining is a method of manufacturing where pre-programed computer software controls the movement of tools, such as shavers and lathes, which in turn manufacture a specific component. It is used to cut and shape pre-existing material into brand new, purpose designed equipment. This manufacturing process increases the amount of automation that is possible in a production line, thus being a cost and time effective manufacturing solution to create machined components.

First, CAD is used to design the desired product which you wish to create, either in two or three dimensions. Then using computer aided manufacturing (CAM) the design is converted into code, which will act as a set of instructions for your CNC machine, programming the movement of the tools as it fabricates the prototype.

CNC machining is appropriate for use in the aerospace industry due to its requirement for no margin of error; the aerospace industry demands extreme levels of precision. This increase in precision afforded by manufacturing components using a CNC machine, rather than by hand, allows the manufacture of reliable lightweight but strong parts.

The standard of quality for manufacturing parts for the aerospace industry (AS9100) offers guidelines which ensures the quality of the manufactured equipment. Aerospace components made using a 5 axis CNC allow for the creation of complex shapes, and the adaptation and reconfiguration of parts. The aerospace industry is an ever evolving one and precision is key, as is the ability to create hollow components which are very lightweight.

Aircraft need to be a combination of high performance, high velocity, function at very high altitude, or work at extreme temperatures at either end of the spectrum. Thus, any machined parts that are used in their manufacturing need to be able to withstand these elements.


About AML Sheffield

AML offers in-house adaptive machining algorithms to achieve the tightest of tolerances. We have the capability to manufacture parts for the aerospace industry in a range of specialist materials including titanium, nickel-based superalloys, and softer alloys inc. aluminium.

Aerospace remains a significant industry for both Global and UK manufacturing, with ever increasing trends towards light weighting and innovative technologies supporting greener flying patterns. Precision components machining remains a foundation corner stone of the industry, with ever more complex geometries and materials requiring innovative manufacturing solutions. AML has continued to position itself in this market sector over the years, continually improving its machining services to meet these challenges.

AML is an advanced manufacturing supplier specialising in the development of manufacturing solutions and production services for a number of prestigious blue-chip clients. Originally a spin-out from the award-winning Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) at the University of Sheffield, AML is now recognised as a market leader in delivering flexible manufacturing capability at the leading edge of machining technologies and efficiencies, with particular expertise in aerospace, defence and energy components.