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2 Indus Institute of Higher Education

Machine Tool
Factory (PMTF)
Internship Report
PMTF has rich experience in Designing and
Manufacturing of precision engineering goods and
its facilities include Designing, Machining,
Forging, Heat Treatment, Assembly, Die Casting

M. Yasir Jamil Khan

M. Raghib Malik B.E Electronics

In the name of Allah most
merciful, the benevolent

Indus Institute of Higher Education

Internship report submitted in fulfillment of the requirements

for the degree of Engineering as per the criteria for
engineering program.


Pakistan Machine Tool Factory (PMTF)

Subject or Topics Covered:

• CNC (Computerized Numeric Control)

• NC (Numeric Control)
• PLC (Programmable Logic Control)
• Pneumatic & Hydraulic Controls

12th April, 2009 to 25th April, 2009

Belongs to:

Mohammad Yasir Jamil Khan

Mohammad Raghib Malik
B.E Electronics Vth Semester


The purpose of this report is to explain

what we did and learned during internship
period with the Pakistan Machine Tool
Factory (PMTF). The report is also a
requirement for the fulfillment of Indus
Institute and Pakistan Engineering Council
for engineering program. The report
focuses primarily on the electronically
controlled machines such as CNC
Machines, NC Machines, PLC and
Pneumatic and Hydraulic based controls,
working environment, successes and short
comings that the intern did encounter
when handling various tasks assigned by
the engineers & supervisor.

The various parts of the report reflect the

intern’s shortcomings, successes,
observations and comments, it would be
imperative to be an engineer. Therefore
the report gives a number of comments
and recommendations on the internship

It is hoped that this report would serve as

a cardinal vehicle to the improvement of 4
Table of Contents

Introduction ……………………………………………………. 02
Forewords ……………………………………………………. 03
Introduction to PMTF……………………………………………. 05
Departments at PMTF……………………………………………. 06

Topics Covered

NC and CNC .…...………………………………………………. 11

PLC (Programmable Logic Control)……….……………………………. 25
Hydraulic Systems..………………………………………………. 33
Pneumatic Systems.………………………………………………. 36

A Short Introduction to PMTF:

Pakistan Machine Tool Factory (Pvt) Ltd. (PMTF) is a
precision engineering goods manufacturing enterprise in
Pakistan, established in technical collaboration with M/s.
Oerlikon Buhrle & Co. of Switzerland who are the world's
renowned manufacturers of Machine Tools. The factory came
into regular production in 1971.

It is located Off National Highway, about 35 Km from Karachi

City near Landhi Industrial Estate and spread over an area of
226 acres out of which 17 acres are occupied by works. The
factory employs about 1900 engineers, technician, workers
and other service staff. The layout of the factory is according
to the best European standards. This factory is a unit of State
Engineering Corporation of Pakistan and is engaged in the
production of Machine Tools, Automotive Transmissions and
Axles Components, Gears for Locomotives, Pressure Die Cast
parts and other products.

PMTF has rich experience in Designing and Manufacturing of

precision engineering goods and its facilities include
Designing, Machining, Forging, Heat Treatment, Assembly, Die
Casting etc.

PMTF is certified to ISO 9001.Quality Assurance System and

has excellent Quality Control and Testing facilities to meet the
international quality requirement.

Departments Introduction:
 Design Centre
 Machining
 Tool Room
 Material Testing
 Heat Treating
 Forging
 Machine Tool Rebuilding

Design Centre:
Computer Aided Design & Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) facilities
are installed for Product Design and Tools/Jigs/Fixtures Design
and CNC Shop in 1990. Engineering software from Computer
vision (USA) and Autodesk namely:

- Design View
- Personal Designer
- Personal Designer/Personal Machinist
- Micro draft
- Personal Data Extract
- Mechanical Desktop power pack (with Auto Cad)
are used for design of products, tools, jigs, fixtures, cutters,
forging & die casting dies, gears, equipments, mechanical

The works facility consists of variety of conventional and CNC
machine tools capable of performing various machining
operations such as turning, planning, milling, drilling, jig
boring, thread grinding, deep hole drilling, gear hobbling,
shaping and shaving, gear grinding, spiral bevel gear cutting,
broaching to the close tolerances specified in the design. The
maximum machining capabilities are as follows:

: Max. 1000 mm dia x 4000 mm length x 800 kg

Shaping/Plannin : Max. 6000 mm length x 1500 mm width x 2000
g kg wt.
Boring/Drilling : Max. 600 mm dia/50 mm dia max.

Gear Cutting : 10 module x 700 mm dia max.

Grinding : Max. 400 mm dia x 2500 mm length x 500 kg wt.
Pressure Die
: Max 650 ton locking force x 12 kg wt.

Besides above facilities special purpose machines are

available for die-sinking, spark erosion, thread grinding, jig
boring, spine rolling, vertical turning, copy milling for intricate
precision components.

 Tool Room:
The factory has a fully equipped Tool Room facility capable of
manufacturing jigs & fixtures, special tools like drills, gauges,
cutters and holding devices, special high precision machine
tools like jig boring, thread grinding, die sinking, relieving
lathes, vertical copying lathes, precision milling machines and
special purpose tool grinding of Swiss and German origin
supplements the facility and ensures that all specifications
and tolerances essential for tool room accuracy is met. The
Tool Room is linked with Tool Design Section fully equipped
with computer Aided Design facilities and supported by
Metrology section located in same area for precise calibration
and control of tool room products. All recommended
international standards are followed for toolings.

 Material Testing:
a. Metallographic:
Complete Evaluation of :
Macro and Micro Structure
Non - Metallic Inclusion & segregation
Case Hardening and Case Depth
Photo Micrograph of Structure
Failure Analysis

b. Mechanical Testing:
Facilities to determine:
Mechanical Properties
Stress - Strain
Tensile and Compressive Strength
Shear and Impact Test

c. Chemical Testing:
Complete Analysis of:
Metals and Alloys
Ferrous and Non Ferrous Elements
Paints, Chemicals, Ores, Oils Greases etc

d. Non-Destructive Testing:
Determination of:
Internal Cracks by Ultrasonic Testing
Surface Cracks by Magnaflux and Dye
- Penetration

 Heat Treatment:
The Heat Treatment shop is the largest and the most well
equipped in the country. The equipment is of French, German
and Italian origin.
The Facilities has :
- For Carburizing and Case Hardening :
Five Sealed Quench Furnaces
Three Gas Fired Pit-type Muffle Furnaces
Two Rotary Hearth Furnaces with Quenching Press
Electrically Heated Tempering Furnace

For Induction Hardening:

Three High Frequency and Medium Frequency Induction
Hardening Machines

For Surface Hardening:

Flame Hardening Machine

For Hardening High Speed Steel:

Salt Bath Furnaces

Hydraulic Presses, Shot Blasting Machines, Sand Blasting

Plant are available for post-
heat treatment process.

 Forging:
The Forging shop is equipped with two drop hammers of 3000
kg and 1500 kg Pneumatic hammers of 600 kg and 300 kg,
Trimming press of 320 tons and 1000 tons, Friction Screw
Press of 480 tons, Heating of stock for forging is done in rotary
hearth furnace. Furnace car-bottom type is installed for
normalizing the forged components. Removal of scales is done
in Tumbler & Table type shot blasting machines. The forge
shop is capable of production of forgings up to 20 kg and 200
mm in diameter.

 Machine Rebuilding:
Machine Rebuilding is a comparatively new technology in the
industrially developed countries. It should not be mixed with
machine tool repair and maintenance and overhaul. The main
characteristic of Machine Rebuilding are:

- The rebuilt machine has same performance and

accuracy as a new machine.
- The warranty period is same as for a new one.
- Cost of Rebuilding is one-third of the price of new
equivalent machine.

PMTF has established this machine rebuilding facility in

1994 with the assistance of UNIDO experts from UK and since
then has undertaken the rebuilding activity with targeted
output set for 10 to 12 machines per annum.

Quality Control:
Inspection and Testing is carried out according to procedures
established for ISO 9001 Quality Assurance System. The
inspection activities are backed up with the facility for
calibration of measuring and testing devices.

PMTF Products range includes:

1- Heavy duty & light duty Milling Machines(Horizontal,
Universal & Vertical)
2- Vertical Copying Milling & Boring Machines
3- Turret Milling Machine
4- Precision Centre Lathes
5- Universal Radial Drilling Machine (Portable)
6- Pantograph Engraving Machine
7- Special Purpose Machine Tools
8- Manual Arbor Press
1- Gear and Shafts for Agriculture Tractors like Massey
Ferguson (MF 240, MF 375),and Fiat
(Fiat 480, Fiat 640).
2- Traction Gears and Pinions for Locomotives
3- Gears for various Industrial applications
4- Components for Bedford Trucks & Buses etc.
1- Aluminum Pressure Die Cast components for Honda
Motorcycle Model CD 70 & CG 125, and Suzuki Motorcycle;
Model A80.
2- Aluminum Pressure Die Cast components for Domestic
3- Aluminum Pressure Die Cast components of Gas Meter for
Gas distribution industries.
4- Aluminum Pressure Die Cast components for Suzuki Car
Model SB 308
1- Ring Spinning Frame Model FA 506
1- Gears for various Industrial Applications.
2- Spares for various plants/machinery.
3- Machines / Equipments as per customer's design /

Topics Covered:


Numerical control (NC) refers to the automation of machine

tools that are operated by abstractly programmed commands
encoded on a storage medium, as opposed to manually
controlled via hand wheels or levers or mechanically
automated via cams alone. The first NC machines were built
in the 1940s and 50s, based on existing tools that were
modified with motors that moved the controls to follow points
fed into the system on paper tape. These early
servomechanisms were rapidly augmented with analog and
digital computers, creating the modern Computer
Numerical Controlled (CNC) machine tools that have
revolutionized the design process.
In modern CNC systems, end-to-end component design is
highly automated using CAD/CAM programs. The programs
produce a computer file that is interpreted to extract the
commands needed to operate a particular machine, and then
loaded into the CNC machines for production. Since any
particular component might require the use of a number of
different tools - drills, saws, etc. - modern machines often
combine multiple tools into a single "cell". In other cases, a
number of different machines are used with an external
controller and human or robotic operators that move the
component from machine to machine. In either case the
complex series of steps needed to produce any part is highly
automated and produces a part that closely matches the
original CAD design.
Earlier forms of automation:
The automation of machine tool control began in the 1800s
with cams that "played" a machine tool in the way that cams
had long been playing musical boxes or operating elaborate
cuckoo clocks. Thomas Blanchard built his gun-stock-copying
lathes (1820s-30s), and the work of people such as
Christopher Miner Spencer developed the turret lathe into the
screw machine (1870s). Cam-based automation had already
reached a highly advanced state by World War I (1910s).
However, automation via cams is fundamentally different from
numerical control because it cannot be abstractly
programmed. There is no direct connection between the
design being produced and the machining steps needed to
create it. Cams can encode information, but getting the
information from the abstract level of an engineering drawing
into the cam is a manual process that requires sculpting
and/or machining and filing. At least two forms of abstractly
programmable control had existed during the 1800s: those of
the Jacquard loom and of mechanical computers pioneered by
Charles Babbage and others. These developments had the
potential for convergence with the automation of machine tool
control starting in that century, but the convergence did not
happen until many decades later.

Tracer control:
The application of hydraulics to cam-based automation
resulted in tracing machines that used a stylus to trace a
template, such as the enormous Pratt & Whitney "Keller
Machine", which could copy templates several feet across.[1]
Another approach was "record and playback", pioneered at
General Motors (GM) in the 1950s, which used a storage
system to record the movements of a human machinist, and
then play them back on demand. Analogous systems are
common even today, notably the "teaching lathe" which gives
new machinists a hands-on feel for the process. None of these
were numerically programmable, however, and required a
master machinist at some point in the process, because the
"programming" was physical rather than numerical.

Servos and selsyns:

One barrier to complete automation was the required
tolerances of the machining process, which are routinely on
the order of thousandths of an inch. Although it would be
relatively easy to connect some sort of control to a storage
device like punch cards, ensuring that the controls were
moved to the correct position with the required accuracy was
another issue. The movement of the tool resulted in varying
forces on the controls that would mean a linear output would
not result in linear motion of the tool. The key development in
this area was the introduction of the servo, which produced
highly accurate measurement information. Attaching two
servos together produced a selsyns, where a remote servo's
motions was accurately matched by another. Using a variety
of mechanical or electrical systems, the output of the selsyns
could be read to ensure proper movement had occurred.

The first serious suggestion that selsyns could be used for

machining control was made by Ernst F. W. Alexanderson, a
Swedish immigrant to the U.S. working at General Electric
(GE). Alexanderson had worked on the problem of torque
amplification that allowed the small output of a mechanical
computer to drive very large motors, which GE used as part of
a larger gun laying system for US Navy ships. Like machining,
gun lying requires very high accuracies, less than a degree,
and the motion of the gun turrets was non-linear. In November
1931 Alexanderson suggested to the Industrial Engineering
Department that the same systems could be used to drive the
inputs of machine tools, allowing it to follow the outline of a
template without the strong physical contact needed by
existing tools like the Keller Machine. He stated that it was a
"matter of straight engineering development." However, the
concept was ahead of its time from a business development
perspective, and GE did not take the matter seriously until
years later, when others had pioneered the field.

Parsons and the invention of NC:

The birth of NC is generally credited to John T. Parsons, a

machinist and salesman at his father's machining company,
Parsons Corp. In 1942 he was told that helicopters were going
to be the "next big thing" by the former head of Ford Trimotor
production, Bill Stout. He called Sikorsky Aircraft to inquire
about possible work, and soon got a contract to build the
wooden stringers in the rotor blades. After setting up
production at a disused furniture factory and ramping up
production, one of the blades failed and it was traced to the
spar. As at least some of the problem appeared to stem from
spot welding a metal collar on the stringer to the metal spar,
so Parsons suggested a new method of attaching the stringers
to the spar using adhesives, never before tried on an aircraft

But that development led to Parsons to wondering about the

possibility of using stamped metal stringers instead of wood,
which would be much easier to make and stronger too. The
stringers for the rotors were built to a design provided by
Sikorsky, which was sent to them as a series of 17 points
defining the outline. Parsons then had to "fill in" the dots with
a French curve to generate an outline they could use as a
template to build the jigs for the wooden versions. But how to
make a tool able to cut metal with that shape was a much
harder problem. Parsons went to visit Wright Field to see Frank
Stulen, who was the head of the Rotary Ring Branch at the
Propeller lab. Stulen concluded that Parsons didn't really know
what he was talking about, and realizing this, Parsons hired
him on the spot. Stulen started work on 1 April 1946 and hired
three new engineers to join him.
Stulen's brother worked at Curtis Wright Propeller, and
mentioned that they were using punch card calculators for
engineering calculations. Stulen decided to adopt the idea to
run stress calculations on the rotors, the first detailed
automated calculations on helicopter rotors. When Parsons
saw what Stulen was doing with the punch card machines, he
asked him if they could be used to generate an outline with
200 points instead of the 17 they were given, and offset each
point by the radius of the cutting tool on a mill. If you cut at
each of those points, it would produce a relatively accurate
cutout of the stringer even in hard steel, and it could easily be
filed down to a smooth shape. The resulting tool would be
useful as a template for stamping metal stringers. Stulen had
no problem doing this, and used the points to make large
tables of numbers that would be taken onto the machine floor.
Here, one operator read the numbers off the charts to two
other operators, one each on the X and Y axis, and they would
move the cutting head to that point and make a cut. This was
called the "by-the-numbers method".
At that point Parsons conceived of a fully automated tool. With
enough points no manual working would be needed at all, but
with manual operation the time saved by having the part
more closely match the outline was offset by the time needed
to move the controls. If the machine's inputs were attached
directly to the card reader this delay, and any associated
manual errors, would be removed and the number of points
could be dramatically increased. Such a machine could
repeatedly punch out perfectly accurate templates on
command. But at the time he had no funds to develop these
When one of Parsons Salesmen was on a visit to Wright Field,
he was told of the problems the newly-formed US Air Force
was having with new jet designs. He asked if Parsons had
anything to help to them. Parsons showed Lockheed their idea
of an automated mill, but they were uninterested. They had
already decided to use 5-axis template copiers to produce the
stringers, cutting from a metal template, and had ordered the
expensive cutting machine already. But as Parsons noted:
Now just picture the situation for a minute. Lockheed had
contracted to design a machine to make these wings. This
machine had five axes of cutter movement, and each of these
was tracer controlled using a template. Nobody was using my
method of making templates, so just imagine what chance
they were going to have of making an accurate airfoil shape
with inaccurate templates.

Parsons worries soon came true, and in 1949 the Air Force
arranged funding for Parsons to build his machines on his
own. Early work with Snyder Machine & Tool Corp proved that
the system of directly driving the controls from motors failed
to have the accuracy needed to set the machine for a
perfectly smooth cut. Since the mechanical controls did not
respond in a linear fashion, you couldn't simply drive it with a
certain amount of power, because the differing forces would
mean the same amount of power would not always produce
the same amount of motion in the controls. No matter how
many points you included, the outline would still be rough.

Enter MIT:

This was not an impossible problem to solve, but would

require some sort of feedback system, like a selsyn, to directly
measure how far the controls had actually turned. Faced with
the daunting task of building such a system, in the spring of
1949 Parsons turned to the MIT Servomechanisms Laboratory,
a world leader in mechanical computing and feedback
systems. During the war the Lab had built a number of
complex motor-driven devices like the motorized gun turret
systems for the B-29 and the automatic tracking system for
the SCR-584 radar. They were naturally suited to building a
prototype of Parsons' automated "by-the-numbers" machine.

The MIT team was led by William Pease assisted by James

McDonough. They quickly concluded that Parsons' design
could be greatly improved; if the machine did not simply cut
at points A and B, but instead moved smoothly between the
points, then not only would it make a perfectly smooth cut,
but could do so with many fewer points - the mill could cut
lines directly instead of having to define a large number of
cutting points to "simulate" it. A three-way agreement was
arranged between Parsons', MIT and the Air Force, and the
project officially ran from July 1949 to June 1950. The contract
called for the construction of two "Card-a-matic Milling
Machine’s, a prototype and a production system. Both to be
handed to Parsons for attachment to one of their mills in order
to develop a deliverable system for cutting stringers.

Instead, in 1950 MIT bought a surplus Cincinnati Milling

Machine Company "Hydro-Tel" mill of their own and arranged
a new contract directly with the Air Force that froze Parsons
out of further development. Parsons would later comment that
he " never dreamed that anybody as reputable as MIT would
deliberately go ahead and take over my project." In spite of
the development being handed to MIT, Parsons filed for a
patent on "Motor Controlled Apparatus for Positioning Machine
Tool" on 5 May 1952, sparking a filing by MIT for a "Numerical
Control Servo-System" on 14 August 1952. Parsons' received
US Patent 2,820,187 on 14 January 1958, and the company
sold an exclusive license to Bendix. IBM, Fujitsu and General
Electric all took sub-licenses after having already started
development of their own devices.

MIT's machine:

MIT fit gears to the various hand wheel inputs and drove them
with roller chains connected to motors, one for each of the
machine's three axes (X, Y and depth). The associated
controller consisted of five refrigerator-sized cabinets that,
together, were almost as large as the mill they were
connected to. Three of the cabinets contained the motor
controllers, one controller for each motor, the other two the
digital reading system.

Unlike Parsons' original punch card design, the MIT design

used standard 7-track punch tape for input. Three of the
tracks were used to control the different axes of the machine,
while the other four encoded various control information. The
tape was read in a cabinet that also housed six relay-based
hardware registers, two for each axis. With every read
operation the previously read point was copied into the
"starting point" register, and the newly read one into the
"ending point". The tape was read continually and the number
in the register increased until a "stop" instruction, four holes
in a line, was encountered.

The final cabinet held a clock that sent pulses through the
registers, compared them, and generated output pulses that
interpolated between the points. For instance, if the points
were far apart the output would have pulses with every clock
cycle, whereas closely spaced points would only generate
pulses after multiple clock cycles. The pulses are sent into a
summing register in the motor controllers, counting up by the
number of pulses every time they were received. The
summing registers were connected to a digital to analog

convertor that output increasing power to the motors as the
count in the registers increased.
The registers were decremented by encoders attached to the
motors and the mill itself, which would reduce the count by
one for every one degree of rotation. Once the second point
was reached the pulses from the clock would stop, and the
motors would eventually drive the mill to the encoded
position. Each 1 degree rotation of the controls produced a
0.0005 inch movement of the cutting head.. The programmer
could control the speed of the cut by selecting points that
were closer together for slow movements, or further apart for
rapid ones.
The system was publicly demonstrated in September 1952,
appearing in that month's Scientific American. MIT's system
was an outstanding success by any technical measure, quickly
making any complex cut with extremely high accuracy that
could not easily be duplicated by hand. However, the system
was terribly complex, including 250 vacuum tubes, 175 relays
and numerous moving parts, reducing its reliability in a
production setting. It was also very expensive, the total bill
presented to the Air Force was $360,000.14, $2,641,727.63 in
2005 dollars. Between 1952 and 1956 the system was used to
mill a number of one-off designs for various aviation firms, in
order to study their potential economic impact.

Proliferation of NC:

The Air Force funding for the project ran out in 1953, but
development was picked up by the Giddings and Lewis
Machine Tool Co. In 1955 many of the MIT team left to form
Concord Controls, a commercial NC company with Giddings'
backing, producing the Numericord controller. Numericord was
similar to the MIT design, but replaced the punch tape with a
magnetic tape reader that General Electric was working on.
The tape contained a number of signals of different phases,
which directly encoded the angle of the various controls. The
tape was played at a constant speed in the controller, which
set its half of the selsyns to the encoded angles while the
remote side was attached to the machine controls. Designs
were still encoded on paper tape, but the tapes were
transferred to a reader/writer that converted them into
magnetic form. The magtapes could then be used on any of
the machines on the floor, where the controllers were greatly
reduced in complexity. Developed to produce highly accurate
dies for an aircraft skinning press, the Numericord "NC5" went
into operation at G&L's plant at Fond du Lac, WI in 1955.
Monarch Machine Tool also developed an NC-controlled lathe,
starting in 1952. They demonstrated their machine at the
1955 Chicago Machine Tool Show, along with a number of
other vendors with punch card or paper tape machines that
were either fully developed or in prototype form. These
included Kearney & Trekker’s Milwaukee-Matic II that could
change its cutting tool under NC control.

A Boeing report noted that "numerical control has proved it

can reduce costs, reduce lead times, improve quality, reduce
tooling and increase productivity.” In spite of these
developments, and glowing reviews from the few users,
uptake of NC was relatively slow. As Parsons later noted:
The NC concept was so strange to manufacturers, and so slow
to catch on, that the US Army itself finally had to build 120 NC
machines and lease them to various manufacturers to begin
popularizing its use.

In 1958 the MIT published its report on the economics of NC.

They concluded that the tools were competitive with human
operators, but simply moved the time from the machining to
the creation of the tapes. In Forces of production Noble claims
that this was the whole point as far as the Air Force was
concerned; moving the process off of the highly unionized

factory floor and into the un-unionized white collar design

CNC arrives:

Many of the commands for the experimental parts were

programmed "by hand" to produce the punch tapes that were
used as input. While the system was being experimented
with, John Runyon made a number of subroutines on the
famous Whirlwind to produce these tapes under computer
control. Users could input a list of points and speeds, and the
program would generate the punch tape. In one instance, this
process reduced the time required to produce the instruction
list and mill the part from 8 hours to 15 minutes. This led to a
proposal to the Air Force to produce a generalized
"programming" language for numerical control, which was
accepted in June 1956.
Starting in September Ross and Pople outlined a language for
machine control that was based on points and lines,
developing this over several years into the APT programming
language. In 1957 the Aircraft Industries Association (AIA) and
Air Material Command at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base
joined with MIT to standardize this work and produce a fully
computer-controlled NC system. On 25 February 1959 the
combined team held a press conference showing the results,
including a 3D machined aluminum ash tray that was handed
out in the press kit.
Meanwhile, Patrick Han ratty was making similar
developments at GE as part of their partnership with G&L on
the Numericord. His language, PRONTO, beat APT into
commercial use when it was "released" in 1958. Han ratty
then went on to develop MICR magnetic ink characters that
were used in cherub processing, before moving to General
Motors to work on the groundbreaking DAC-1 CAD system.

APT was soon extended to include "real" curves in 2D-APT-II.
With its release, MIT reduced its focus on CNC as it moved into
CAD experiments. APT development was picked up with the
AIA in San Diego, and in 1962, to Illinois Institute of
Technology Research. Work on making APT an international
standard started in 1963 under USASI X3.4.7, but many
manufacturers of CNC machines had their own one-off
additions (like PRONTO), so standardization was not
completed until 1968, when there were 25 optional add-ins to
the basic system.
Just as APT was being released in the early 1960s, a second
generation of lower-cost transistorized computers was hitting
the market that were able to process much larger volumes of
information in production settings. This so lowered the cost of
implementing a NC system that by the mid 1960s, APT runs
accounted for a third of all computer time at large aviation

CAD meets CNC:

While the Servomechanisms Lab was in the process of

developing their first mill, in 1953 MIT's Mechanical
Engineering Department dropped the requirement that
undergraduates take courses in drawing. The instructors
formerly teaching these programs were merged into the
Design Division, where an informal discussion of computerized
design started. Meanwhile the Electronic Systems Laboratory,
the newly rechristened Servomechanisms Laboratory, had
been discussing whether or not design would ever start with
paper diagrams in the future.
In January 1959, an informal meeting was held involving
individuals from both the Electronic Systems Laboratory and
the Mechanical Engineering Department's Design Division.
Formal meetings followed in April and and May, which resulted
in the "Computer-Aided Design Project". In December 1959,
the Air Force issued a one year contract to ESL for $223,000
to fund the Project, including $20,800 earmarked for 104
hours of computer time at $200 per hour. This proved to be
far too little for the ambitious program they had in mind,
although their engineering calculation system, AED, was
released in March 1965.
In 1959 General Motors started an experimental project to
digitize, store and print the many design sketches being
generated in the various GM design departments. When the
basic concept demonstrated that it could work, they started
the DAC-1 project with IBM to develop a production version.
One part of the DAC project was the direct conversion of
paper diagrams into 3D models, which were then converted
into APT commands and cut on milling machines. In
November 1963 a trunk lid design moved from 2D paper
sketch to 3D clay prototype for the first time. With the
exception of the initial sketch, the design-to-production loop
had been closed.
Meanwhile MIT's offsite Lincoln Labs was building computers
to test new transistorized designs. The ultimate goal was
essentially a transistorized Whirlwind known as TX-2, but in
order to test various circuit designs a smaller version known
as TX-0 was built first. When construction of TX-2 started, time
in TX-0 freed up and this led to a number of experiments
involving interactive input and use of the machine's CRT
display for graphics. Further development of these concepts
led to Ivan Sutherland's groundbreaking Sketchpad program
on the TX-2.
Sutherland moved to the University of Utah after his
Sketchpad work, but it inspired other MIT graduates to
attempt the first true CAD system, Electronic Drafting Machine
(EDM). It was EDM, sold to Control Data and known as
"Digigraphics", that Lockheed used to build production parts
for the C-5 Galaxy, the first example of an end-to-end
CAD/CNC production system.

By 1970 there were a wide variety of CAD firms including
Intergraph, Applicon, Computer vision, Auto-troll Technology,
UGS Corp. and others, as well as large vendors like CDC and

Proliferation of CNC

The price of computer cycles fell drastically during the 1960s

with the widespread introduction of useful minicomputers.
Eventually it became less expensive to handle the motor
control and feedback with a computer program than it was
with dedicated servo systems. Small computers were
dedicated to a single mill, placing the entire process in a small
box. PDP-8's and Data General Nova computers were common
in these roles. The introduction of the microprocessor in the
1970s further reduced the cost of implementation, and today
almost all CNC machines use some form of microprocessor to
handle all operations.
The introduction of lower-cost CNC machines radically
changed the manufacturing industry. Curves are as easy to
cut as straight lines, complex 3-D structures are relatively
easy to produce, and the number of machining steps that
required human action have been dramatically reduced. With
the increased automation of manufacturing processes with
CNC machining, considerable improvements in consistency
and quality have been achieved with no strain on the
operator. CNC automation reduced the frequency of errors and
provided CNC operators with time to perform additional tasks.
CNC automation also allows for more flexibility in the way
parts are held in the manufacturing process and the time
required to change the machine to produce different

During the early 1970s the Western economies were mired in
slow economic growth and rising employment costs, and NC
machines started to become more attractive. The major U.S.
vendors were slow to respond to the demand for machines
suitable for lower-cost NC systems, and into this void stepped
the Germans. In 1979, sales of German machines surpassed
the U.S. designs for the first time. This cycle quickly repeated
itself, and by 1980 Japan had taken a leadership position, U.S.
sales dropping all the time. Once sitting in the #1 position in
terms of sales on a top-ten chart consisting entirely of U.S.
companies in 1971, by 1987 Cincinnati Milacron was in 8th
place on a chart heavily dominated by Japanese firms.
Many researchers have commented that the U.S. focus on
high-end applications left them in an uncompetitive situation
when the economic downturn in the early 1970s led to greatly
increased demand for low-cost NC systems. Unlike the U.S.
companies, who had focused on the highly profitable
aerospace market, German and Japanese manufacturers
targeted lower-profit segments from the start and were able
to enter the low-cost markets much more easily.


Although modern data storage techniques have moved on

from punch tape in almost every other role, tapes are still
relatively common in CNC systems. This is because it was
often easier to add a punch tape reader to a microprocessor
controller than it was to re-write large libraries of tapes into a
new format. One change that was implemented fairly widely
was the switch from paper to mylar tapes, which are much
more mechanically robust. Floppy disks, USB flash drives and
local area networking have replaced the tapes to some
degree, especially in larger environments that are highly

The proliferation of CNC led to the need for new CNC
standards that were not encumbered by licensing or particular
design concepts, like APT. A number of different "standards"
proliferated for a time, often based around vector graphics
markup languages supported by plotters. One such standard
has since become very common, the "G-code" that was
originally used on Gerber Scientific plotters and then adapted
for CNC use. The file format became so widely used that it has
been embodied in an EIA standard. In turn, G-code was
supplanted by STEP-NC, a system that was deliberately
designed for CNC, rather than grown from an existing plotter
A more recent advancement in CNC interpreters is support of
logical commands, known as parametric programming.
Parametric programs include both device commands as well
as a control language similar to BASIC. The programmer can
make if/then/else statements, loops, subprogram calls,
perform various arithmetic, and manipulate variables to
create a large degree of freedom within one program. An
entire product line of different sizes can be programmed using
logic and simple math to create and scale an entire range of
parts, or create a stock part that can be scaled to any size a
customer demands.
As digital electronics has spread, CNC has fallen in price to the
point where hobbyists can purchase any number of small CNC
systems for home use. It is even possible to build your own.


Modern CNC mills differ little in concept from the original

model built at MIT in 1952. Mills typically consist of a table
that moves in the Y axis, and a tool chuck that moves in X and
Z (depth). The position of the tool is driven by motors through
a series of step-down gears in order to provide highly accurate
movements, or in modern designs, direct-drive stepper
As the controller hardware evolved, the mills themselves also
evolved. One change has been to enclose the entire
mechanism in a large box as a safety measure, often with
additional safety interlocks to ensure the operator is far
enough from the working piece for safe operation. Mechanical
manual controls disappeared long ago.
CNC-like systems are now used for any process that can be
described as a series of movements and operations. These
include laser cutting, welding, friction stir welding, ultrasonic
welding, flame and plasma cutting, bending, spinning,
pinning, gluing, fabric cutting, sewing, tape and fiber
placement, routing, picking and placing (PnP), and sawing.

Programmable logic controller

A programmable logic controller (PLC) or programmable

controller is a digital computer used for automation of
electromechanical processes, such as control of machinery on
factory assembly lines, amusement rides, or lighting fixtures.
PLCs are used in many industries and machines, such as
packaging and semiconductor machines. Unlike general-
purpose computers, the PLC is designed for multiple inputs
and output arrangements, extended temperature ranges,
immunity to electrical noise, and resistance to vibration and
impact. Programs to control machine operation are typically
stored in battery-backed or non-volatile memory. A PLC is an
example of a real time system since output results must be
produced in response to input conditions within a bounded
time, otherwise unintended operation will result.


The main difference from other computers is that PLCs are

armored for severe conditions (such as dust, moisture, heat,
cold) and have the facility for extensive input/output (I/O)
arrangements. These connect the PLC to sensors and
actuators. PLCs read limit switches, analog process variables
(such as temperature and pressure), and the positions of
complex positioning systems. Some use machine vision. On
the actuator side, PLCs operate electric motors, pneumatic or
hydraulic cylinders, magnetic relays, solenoids, or analog
outputs. The input/output arrangements may be built into a
simple PLC, or the PLC may have external I/O modules
attached to a computer network that plugs into the PLC.

System scale:

A small PLC will have a fixed number of connections built in

for inputs and outputs. Typically, expansions are available if
the base model has insufficient I/O.
Modular PLCs have a chassis (also called a rack) into which
are placed modules with different functions. The processor
and selection of I/O modules is customized for the particular
application. Several racks can be administered by a single
processor, and may have thousands of inputs and outputs. A
special high speed serial I/O link is used so that racks can be
distributed away from the processor, reducing the wiring costs
for large plants.

User interface:

PLCs may need to interact with people for the purpose of
configuration, alarm reporting or everyday control.
A Human-Machine Interface (HMI) is employed for this
purpose. HMIs are also referred to as MMIs (Man Machine
Interface) and GUI (Graphical User Interface).
A simple system may use buttons and lights to interact with
the user. Text displays are available as well as graphical touch
screens. More complex systems use a programming and
monitoring software installed on a computer, with the PLC
connected via a communication interface.


PLCs have built in communications ports usually 9-Pin RS232,

and optionally for RS485 and Ethernet. Modbus or DF1 is
usually included as one of the communications protocols.
Others' options include various fieldbuses such as DeviceNet
or Profibus. Other communications protocols that may be used
are listed in the List of automation protocols.
Most modern PLCs can communicate over a network to some
other system, such as a computer running a SCADA
(Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition) system or web
PLCs used in larger I/O systems may have peer-to-peer (P2P)
communication between processors. This allows separate
parts of a complex process to have individual control while
allowing the subsystems to co-ordinate over the
communication link. These communication links are also often
used for HMI devices such as keypads or PC-type
workstations. Some of today's PLCs can communicate over a
wide range of media including RS-485, Coaxial, and even
Ethernet for I/O control at network speeds up to 100 Mbit/s.

PLC compared with other control systems:

PLCs are well-adapted to a range of automation tasks. These

are typically industrial processes in manufacturing where the
cost of developing and maintaining the automation system is
high relative to the total cost of the automation, and where
changes to the system would be expected during its
operational life. PLCs contain input and output devices
compatible with industrial pilot devices and controls; little
electrical design is required, and the design problem centers
on expressing the desired sequence of operations in ladder
logic (or function chart) notation. PLC applications are
typically highly customized systems so the cost of a packaged
PLC is low compared to the cost of a specific custom-built
controller design. On the other hand, in the case of mass-
produced goods, customized control systems are economic
due to the lower cost of the components, which can be
optimally chosen instead of a "generic" solution, and where
the non-recurring engineering charges are spread over
thousands or millions of units.
For high volume or very simple fixed automation tasks,
different techniques are used. For example, a consumer
dishwasher would be controlled by an electromechanical cam
timer costing only a few dollars in production quantities.
A microcontroller-based design would be appropriate where
hundreds or thousands of units will be produced and so the
development cost (design of power supplies and input/output
hardware) can be spread over many sales, and where the end-
user would not need to alter the control. Automotive
applications are an example; millions of units are built each
year, and very few end-users alter the programming of these
controllers. However, some specialty vehicles such as transit
busses economically use PLCs instead of custom-designed
controls, because the volumes are low and the development
cost would be uneconomic.

Very complex process control, such as used in the chemical
industry, may require algorithms and performance beyond the
capability of even high-performance PLCs. Very high-speed or
precision controls may also require customized solutions; for
example, aircraft flight controls.
Programmable controllers are widely used in motion control,
positioning control and torque control. Some manufacturers
produce motion control units to be integrated with PLC so that
G-code (involving a CNC machine) can be used to instruct
machine movements.
PLCs may include logic for single-variable feedback analog
control loop, a "proportional, integral, derivative" or "PID
controller." A PID loop could be used to control the
temperature of a manufacturing process, for example.
Historically PLCs were usually configured with only a few
analog control loops; where processes required hundreds or
thousands of loops, a distributed control system (DCS) would
instead be used. As PLCs have become more powerful, the
boundary between DCS and PLC applications has become less
PLCs have similar functionality as Remote Terminal Units. An
RTU, however, usually does not support control algorithms or
control loops. As hardware rapidly becomes more powerful
and cheaper, RTUs, PLCs and DCSs are increasingly beginning
to overlap in responsibilities, and many vendors sell RTUs with
PLC-like features and vice versa. The industry has
standardized on the IEC 61131-3 functional block language for
creating programs to run on RTUs and PLCs, although nearly
all vendors also offer proprietary alternatives and associated
development environments.

Digital and analog signals:

Digital or discrete signals behave as binary switches, yielding

simply an On or Off signal (1 or 0, True or False, respectively).
Push buttons, limit switches, and photoelectric sensors are
examples of devices providing a discrete signal. Discrete
signals are sent using either voltage or current, where a
specific range is designated as On and another as Off. For
example, a PLC might use 24 V DC I/O, with values above 22 V
DC representing On, values below 2VDC representing Off, and
intermediate values undefined. Initially, PLCs had only
discrete I/O.
Analog signals are like volume controls, with a range of values
between zero and full-scale. These are typically interpreted as
integer values (counts) by the PLC, with various ranges of
accuracy depending on the device and the number of bits
available to store the data. As PLCs typically use 16-bit signed
binary processors, the integer values are limited between
-32,768 and +32,767. Pressure, temperature, flow, and weight
are often represented by analog signals. Analog signals can
use voltage or current with a magnitude proportional to the
value of the process signal. For example, an analog 4-20 mA
or 0 - 10 V input would be converted into an integer value of 0
- 32767.
Current inputs are less sensitive to electrical noise (i.e. from
welders or electric motor starts) than voltage inputs.


As an example, say a facility needs to store water in a tank. The water

is drawn from the tank by another system, as needed, and our
example system must manage the water level in the tank.
Using only digital signals, the PLC has two digital inputs from float
switches (Low Level and High Level). When the water level is above the
switch it closes a contact and passes a signal to an input. The PLC uses
a digital output to open and close the inlet valve into the tank.
When the water level drops enough so that the Low Level float switch
is off (down), the PLC will open the valve to let more water in. Once the
water level rises enough so that the High Level switch is on (up), the
PLC will shut the inlet to stop the water from overflowing. This rung is
an example of seal in logic. The output is sealed in until some condition
breaks the circuit.
| |

| Low Level High Level Fill Valve |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| Fill Valve | |
|------[ ]------| |
| |
| |

An analog system might use a water pressure sensor or a load

cell, and an adjustable (throttling) dripping out of the tank,
the valve adjusts to slowly drip water back into the tank.
In this system, to avoid 'flutter' adjustments that can wear out
the valve, many PLCs incorporate "hysteresis" which
essentially creates a "deadband" of activity. A technician
adjusts this deadband so the valve moves only for a
significant change in rate. This will in turn minimize the
motion of the valve, and reduce its wear.
A real system might combine both approaches, using float
switches and simple valves to prevent spills, and a rate sensor
and rate valve to optimize refill rates and prevent water
hammer. Backup and maintenance methods can make a real
system very complicated.


PLC programs are typically written in a special application on

a personal computer, then downloaded by a direct-connection
cable or over a network to the PLC. The program is stored in
the PLC either in battery-backed-up RAM or some other non-
volatile flash memory. Often, a single PLC can be programmed
to replace thousands of relays.
Under the IEC 61131-3 standard, PLCs can be programmed
using standards-based programming languages. A graphical
programming notation called Sequential Function Charts is
available on certain programmable controllers.
Recently, the International standard IEC 61131-3 has become
popular. IEC 61131-3 currently defines five programming
languages for programmable control systems: FBD (Function
block diagram), LD (Ladder diagram), ST (Structured text,
similar to the Pascal programming language), IL (Instruction
list, similar to assembly language) and SFC (Sequential
function chart). These techniques emphasize logical
organization of operations.
While the fundamental concepts of PLC programming are
common to all manufacturers, differences in I/O addressing,
memory organization and instruction sets mean that PLC
programs are never perfectly interchangeable between
different makers. Even within the same product line of a single
manufacturer, different models may not be directly

The PLC was invented in response to the needs of the
American automotive manufacturing industry. Programmable
controllers were initially adopted by the automotive industry
where software revision replaced the re-wiring of hard-wired
control panels when production models changed.
Before the PLC, control, sequencing, and safety interlock logic
for manufacturing automobiles was accomplished using
hundreds or thousands of relays, cam timers, and drum
sequencers and dedicated closed-loop controllers. The
process for updating such facilities for the yearly model
change-over was very time consuming and expensive, as the
relay systems needed to be rewired by skilled electricians.
In 1968 GM Hydramatic (the automatic transmission division
of General Motors) issued a request for proposal for an
electronic replacement for hard-wired relay systems.
The winning proposal came from Bedford Associates of
Bedford, Massachusetts. The first PLC, designated the 084
because it was Bedford Associates' eighty-fourth project, was
the result. Bedford Associates started a new company
dedicated to developing, manufacturing, selling, and servicing
this new product: Modicum, which stood for Modular Digital
Controller. One of the people who worked on that project was
Dick Morley, who is considered to be the "father" of the PLC.
The Modicum brand was sold in 1977 to Gould Electronics,
and later acquired by German Company AEG and then by
French Schneider Electric, the current owner.
One of the very first 084 models built is now on display at
Modicum’s headquarters in North Andover, Massachusetts. It
was presented to Modicum by GM, when the unit was retired
after nearly twenty years of uninterrupted service. Modicum
used the 84 moniker at the end of its product range until the
984 made its appearance.
The automotive industry is still one of the largest users of


Early PLCs were designed to replace relay logic systems.

These PLCs were programmed in "ladder logic", which
strongly resembles a schematic diagram of relay logic.
Modern PLCs can be programmed in a variety of ways, from
ladder logic to more traditional programming languages such
as BASIC and C. Another method is State Logic, a Very High
Level Programming Language designed to program PLCs
based on State Transition Diagrams.
Many of the earliest PLCs expressed all decision making logic
in simple ladder logic which appeared similar to electrical
schematic diagrams. This program notation was chosen to
reduce training demands for the existing technicians. Other
early PLCs used a form of instruction list programming, based
on a stack-based logic solver.


Early PLCs, up to the mid-1980s, were programmed using
proprietary programming panels or special-purpose
programming terminals, which often had dedicated function
keys representing the various logical elements of PLC
programs. Programs were stored on cassette tape cartridges.
Facilities for printing and documentation were very minimal
due to lack of memory capacity. The very oldest PLCs used
non-volatile magnetic core memory.


The functionality of the PLC has evolved over the years to

include sequential relay control, motion control, process
control, distributed control systems and networking. The data
handling, storage, processing power and communication
capabilities of some modern PLCs are approximately
equivalent to desktop computers. PLC-like programming
combined with remote I/O hardware, allow a general-purpose
desktop computer to overlap some PLCs in certain

Hydraulic drive system

A hydraulic or hydrostatic drive system or hydraulic

power transmission is a drive or transmission system that
uses hydraulic fluid under pressure to drive machinery. The
term hydrostatic refers to the transfer of energy from flow and
pressure, not from the kinetic energy of the flow. Such a
system basically consists of three parts. The generator (e.g. a
hydraulic pump, driven by an electric motor, a combustion
engine or a windmill); valves, filters, piping etc. (to guide and
control the system); the motor (e.g. a hydraulic motor or
hydraulic cylinder) to drive the machinery.

Principle of a hydraulic drive:

Pascal's law is the basis of hydraulic
drive systems. As the pressure in the
system is the same, the force that the
fluid gives to the surroundings is
therefore equal to pressure x area. In
such a way, a small piston feels a
small force and a large piston feels a
large force.
The same counts for a hydraulic pump
with a small swept volume, that asks
for a small torque, combined with a
hydraulic motor with a large swept
volume, that gives a large torque.
In such a way a transmission with a certain ratio can be built.
Most hydraulic drive systems make use of hydraulic cylinders.
Here the same principle is used- a small torque can be
transmitted in to a large force.
By throttling the fluid between generator part and motor part,
or by using hydraulic pumps and/or motors with adjustable
swept volume, the ratio of the transmission can be changed
easily. In case throttling is used, the efficiency of the
transmission is limited; in case adjustable pumps and motors
are used, the efficiency however is very
large. In fact, up to around 1980, a
hydraulic drive system had hardly any
competition from other adjustable
(electric) drive systems.
Nowadays electric drive systems using
electric servo-motors can be controlled
in an excellent way and can easily compete with rotating
hydraulic drive systems. Hydraulic cylinders are in fact
without competition for linear (high) forces. For these
cylinders anyway hydraulic systems will remain of interest
and if such a system is available, it is easy and logical to use
this system also for the rotating drives of the cooling systems.

Hydraulic cylinder:

Hydraulic cylinders (also called linear hydraulic motors) are

mechanical actuators that are used to give a linear force
through a linear stroke. A hydraulic cylinder is without doubt
the best known hydraulic component. Hydraulic cylinders are
able to give pushing and pulling forces of millions of metric
tons, with only a simple hydraulic system. Very simple
hydraulic cylinders are used in presses; here the cylinder
consists out of a volume in a piece of iron with a plunger
pushed in it and sealed with a cover. By pumping hydraulic
fluid in the volume, the plunger is pushed out with a force of
plunger-area * pressure.
More sophisticated cylinders have a body with end cover, a
piston-rod with piston and a cylinder-head. At one side the
bottom is for instance connected to a single clevis, whereas at
the other side, the piston rod also is foreseen with a single
clevis. The cylinder shell normally has hydraulic connections
at both sides. A connection at bottom side and one at cylinder
head side. If oil is pushed under the piston, the piston-rod is
pushed out and oil that was between the piston and the
cylinder head is pushed back to the oil-tank again.
The pushing or pulling force of a hydraulic cylinder is:
F = Ab * pb - Ah * ph
F = Pushing Force in N
Ab = (π/4) * (Bottom-diameter)^2 [in m2]
Ah = (π/4) * ((Bottom-diameter)^2-(Piston-rod-diameter)^2))
[in m2]
pb = pressure at bottom side in [N/m2]
ph = pressure at cylinder head side in [N/m2]

Apart from miniature cylinders, in general, the smallest

cylinder diameter is 32 mm and the smallest piston rod
diameter is 16 mm.
Simple hydraulic cylinders have a maximum working pressure
of about 70 bar, the next step is 140 bar, 210 bar, 320/350
bar and further, the cylinders are in general custom build. The
stroke of a hydraulic cylinder is limited by the manufacturing
process. The majority of hydraulic cylinders have a stroke
between 0,3 and 5 metres, whereas 12-15 metre stroke is also
possible, but for this length only a limited number of suppliers
are on the market.

In case the retracted length of the cylinder is too long for the
cylinder to be build in the structure. In this case telescopic
cylinders can be used. One has to realize that for simple
pushing applications telescopic cylinders might be available
easily; for higher forces and/or double acting cylinders, they
must be designed especially and are very expensive. If
hydraulic cylinders are only used for pushing and the piston
rod is brought in again by other means, one can also use
plunger cylinders. Plunger cylinders have no sealing over the
piston, or the piston does not exist. This means that only one
oil connection is necessary. In general the diameter of the
plunger is rather large compared with a normal piston
cylinder, because this large area is needed.
Whereas a hydraulic motor will always leak oil, a hydraulic
cylinder does not have a leakage over the piston nor over the
cylinder head sealing, so that there is no need for a
mechanical brake.

Hydraulic motor:
The hydraulic motor is the rotary counterpart of the hydraulic
Conceptually, a hydraulic motor should be interchangeable
with hydraulic pump, because it performs the opposite
function -- much as the conceptual DC electric motor is
interchangeable with a DC electrical generator. However,
most hydraulic pumps cannot be used as hydraulic motors
because they cannot be back driven. Also, a hydraulic motor
is usually designed for the working pressure at both sides of
the motor.

Hydraulic valves:

These valves are usually very heavy duty to stand up to high

pressures. Some special valves can control the direction of the
flow of fluid and act as a control unit for a system.


Pneumatics is the use of pressurized gas to affect

mechanical motion.
Pneumatic power is used in industry, where factory machines
are commonly plumbed for compressed air; other compressed
inert gases can also be used. Pneumatics also has
applications in dentistry, construction, mining, and other

Examples of pneumatic systems:

• Pneumatic drill (jackhammer) used by road workers
• Pneumatic nail gun
• Electro-pneumatic action
• Pneumatic switches
• Air compressors
• Vacuum pump
• Barostat systems used in Neuro gastroenterology and for
researching electricity
• Cable jetting, a way to install cables in ducts

Gases used in pneumatic systems:

Pneumatic systems in fixed installations such as factories use

compressed air because a sustainable supply can be made by
compressing atmospheric air. The air usually has moisture
removed and a small quantity of oil added at the compressor,
to avoid corrosion of mechanical components and to lubricate
Factory-plumbed, pneumatic-power users need not worry
about poisonous leakages as the gas is commonly just air.
Smaller or stand-alone systems can use other compressed
gases which are an asphyxiation hazard, such as nitrogen -
often referred to as OFN (oxygen-free nitrogen), when
supplied in cylinders.
Any compressed gas other than air is an asphyxiation hazard -
including nitrogen, which makes up approximately 80% of air.
Compressed oxygen (approx. 20% of air) would not
asphyxiate, but it would be an extreme fire hazard, so is never
used in pneumatically powered devices.
Portable pneumatic tools and small vehicles such as Robot
Wars machines and other hobbyist applications are often
powered by compressed carbon dioxide because containers
designed to hold it such as soda stream canisters and fire
extinguishers are readily available, and the phase change
between liquid and gas makes it possible to obtain a larger
volume of compressed gas from a lighter container than
compressed air would allow. Carbon dioxide is both an
asphyxiant and poisonous, and can also be a freezing hazard
when vented.

Comparison to hydraulics:

Both pneumatics and hydraulics are applications of fluid

power. Pneumatics uses an easily compressible gas such as
air or a suitable pure gas, while hydraulics uses relatively
incompressible liquid media such as oil. Most industrial
pneumatic applications use pressures of about 80 to 100
pounds per square inch (psi) (500 to 700 kilopascals).
Hydraulics applications commonly use from 1,000 to 5,000 psi
(7 to 35 MPa), but specialized applications may exceed 10,000
psi (70 MPa).

Advantages of pneumatics:

 Simplicity of Design And Control

Machines are easily designed using standard cylinders & other
components. Control is as easy as it is simple ON - OFF type
 Reliability
Pneumatic systems tend to have long operating lives and
require very little maintenance.
Because gas is compressible, the equipment is less likely to
be damaged by shock. The gas in pneumatics absorbs
excessive force, whereas the fluid of hydraulics directly
transfers force.
 Storage

Compressed Gas can be stored, allowing the use of machines
when electrical power is lost.
 Safety
Very small fire hazards (compared to hydraulic oil).
Machines can be designed to be overload safe.

Advantages of hydraulics:

• Fluid does not absorb any of the supplied energy.

• Capable of moving much higher loads and providing
much higher forces due to the incompressibility.
• The hydraulic working fluid is basically incompressible,
leading to a minimum of spring action. When hydraulic
fluid flow is stopped, the slightest motion of the load
releases the pressure on the load; there is no need to
"bleed off" pressurized air to release the pressure on the

Pneumatic Logic:

Pneumatic logic systems are often used to control industrial

processes, consisting of primary logic units such as:
• And Units
• Or Units
• 'Relay or Booster' Units
• Latching Units
• 'Timer' Units
Pneumatic logic is a reliable and functional control method for
industrial processes. In recent years, these systems have
largely been replaced by electrical control systems, due to the
smaller size and lower cost of electrical components.
Pneumatic devices are still used in processes where
compressed air is the only energy source available or upgrade
cost, safety, and other considerations outweigh the advantage
of modern digital control.
Successes and Short Comings


There were many successes, both on our side and on the
company side. Personally the following is what we succeeded

• First, to us it was a success having been given a chance

to handle work on various machines that we believe will
never see like these.

• Through the work that we used to do; our knowledge

related to the machines was largely broadened. We can
clearly understand how one can effectively study issues

• We weren’t familiar practically with CNC, PLC, controls

and Pneumatic Hydraulic Systems, but now we can
confidently use it with ease.

The Pakistan Machine Tool Factory largely succeeded a lot

through our skills, competence and the overall output of my
work because;

• We used our skills, studies and hands too in workshops

and departments. Therefore enabling to meet deadlines

Short Comings
There weren’t many short comings since as an intern we were
given a lot of support by our supervisors and other fellow
staff. Therefore the major short comings that I did face were:

• Time was limited and therefore I had to leave pre-

maturely before the complete products of my effort were

• In terms of cultural differences I must say that nobody

should expect it as easy to integrate in a different culture.
But the difficulty was not based on the way, we were
welcomed here, it was that we needed some time to feel
comfortable with our new environment.

Internship as a learning process:

While the work we performed during this period was

particularly glamorous and equally thrilling, we feel that this
internship period exposed us to experiences which have
significantly altered our perception of local water related
issues towards a more a global holistic model.