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Manufacturing Manufacturing can be defined two ways: (1) From a technological viewpoint, and (2) from an economic viewpoint. Technologically, manufacturing consists of the application of physical and chemical processes to alter the geometry, properties, and/or appearance of a given starting material to make parts or products. Manufacturing also includes assembly processes in which products are made by joining multiple parts into a single entity. Processes to accomplish manufacturing involve a combination of machinery, tools, power, and manual labor. Manufacturing is almost always carried out as a sequence of operations, with each operation bringing the material closer to the desired final state. Economically, manufacturing involves the transformation of materials into items of greater value by means of one or more processing and/or assembly operations. The essential point is that manufacturing adds value to the material by changing its shape or properties, or by combining it with other materials. The product has been made more valuable than the starting material through the manufacturing operations performed on it.
FIGURE : Two ways to define manufacturing: (a) as a technological process and (b) as an economic process. Manufacturing Process Manufacturing processes is divided into two categories: (1) Processing operations, which transform materials into component parts. Processing operations include shaping operations, property-enhancing operations, and surface-processing operations. (2) Assembly operations, which join those component parts into products. Assembly includes welding, brazing, soldering, adhesive bonding, and mechanical assembly. MATERIALS AND MANUFACTURING PROCESSES Before discussing the processes used in manufacturing, it is appropriate to identify and briefly discuss the categories of engineering materials used in manufactured products. These are the materials out of which the products in Table (i) are fabricated. The reason for discussing these engineering materials is that a strong correlation exists between the type of material and the most appropriate manufacturing process for that material.
Engineering materials can usually be classified into one of three basic categories: • metals,
ceramics, and polymers.
Their chemistries and properties are different, and these differences influence the selection of the manufacturing processes that can be used to make products from them. In addition to the three basic categories, there is a fourth category: composites—non-homogeneous mixtures of the other three types rather than a unique category. Definitions and examples of the four groups are listed in Table (ii). Manufacturing processes divide into two basic types: (1) Processing operations and (2) Assembly operations. A processing operation transforms a work material from one state of completion to a more advanced state that is closer to the final desired product. It adds value by changing the geometry, properties, or appearance of the starting material. In general, processing operations are performed on discrete work parts, but some processing operations are also applicable to assembled items (for example, it is more convenient to paint a welded assembly after welding rather than paint the individual parts beforehand). An assembly operation joins two or more components in order to create a new entity, which is called an assembly, subassembly, or some other term that refers to the joining process (for example, welding is used to describe a welded assembly).The general classification of manufacturing processes is presented in Table (ii)
Table (i) Manufacturing Industries (and Associated Products)
Table (ii) - The Four Groups of Engineering Materials
PROCESSING OPERATIONS A processing operation uses energy to alter a work part’s shape, physical properties, or appearance in order to add value to the material. The forms of energy include mechanical, thermal, electrical, and chemical. The energy is applied in a controlled way by means of machinery and tooling. Human energy may also be required, but human workers are generally employed to control the machines, to oversee the operations, and to load and unload parts before and after each cycle of operation. Material is fed into the process, energy is applied by the machinery and tooling to transform the material, and the completed work part exits the process. As shown in the figure above, most production operations produce waste or scrap, either as a natural aspect of the process (e.g., removing material as in machining) or in the form of occasional defective pieces. It is an important objective in manufacturing to reduce the incidence of waste in either of these forms. More than one processing operation is usually required to transform the starting material into its final form. The operations are performed in the particular sequence required to achieve the geometry and condition defined by the design specification. Three categories of processing operations are distinguished: (1) Shaping operations, (2) Property-enhancing operations, and (3) Surface-processing operations. Shaping operations alter the geometry of the starting work material by various methods. Common shaping processes include casting, forging, and machining. Property enhancing operations add value to the material by improving its physical properties without changing its shape. Heat treatment is the most common example.
Surface processing operations are performed to clean, treat, coat, or deposit material onto the exterior surface of the work. Common examples of coating are electroplating and painting, performed to protect the surface or enhance its appearance. Shaping Processes Most shape-processing operations apply heat or mechanical force or a combination of these to effect a change in geometry of the work material. There are various ways to classify the shaping processes. The classification used here is based on the state of the starting material, by which we have four categories: 1. Solidification processes. These include casting, molding, and other processes in which the starting material is a heated liquid or semi fluid. 2. Particulate processing. The starting material is a powder, and the powders are formed into the desired geometry and then heated to bind the powders. 3. Deformation processes. The starting material is a ductile solid (commonly metal), which is deformed by mechanical stresses to shape the part. 4. Material removal processes. The starting material is a solid (ductile or brittle), from which material is removed so that the remaining part has the desired geometry. Solidification Processes: In the first category, the starting material is heated sufficiently to transform it into a liquid or highly plastic (semi fluid) state. Nearly all materials can be processed in this way. Metals, ceramic glasses, and plastics can all be heated to sufficiently high temperatures to convert them into liquids. With the material in a liquid or semi fluid form, it can be poured or otherwise forced to flow into a mold cavity, where it cools and solidifies to take a solid shape that is the same as the cavity. Processes that operate this way are called casting or molding. Casting is the name used for metals, and molding is the common term used for polymers. Particulate Processing: In particulate processing, the starting materials are powders of metals or ceramics. Although metals and ceramics are quite different, the processes to shape them in particulate processing are quite similar. The common technique involves pressing and sintering in which the powders are first squeezed into a die cavity under high pressure. This causes the powders to take the shape of the cavity. However, the compacted work part lacks sufficient strength for any useful application. To increase strength, the part is then heated to a temperature below the melting point, which causes the individual particles to bond together. The heating operation is called sintering. Deformation Processes: In deformation processes, the starting work part is shaped by application of forces that exceed the yield strength of the material. For the material to be formed in this way, it must be sufficiently ductile to avoid fracture during deformation. To increase ductility, the work material is often heated, prior to forming, to a temperature below the melting point. Deformation processes are associated most closely with metal working and include operations such as forging, extrusion, rolling, and bar or wire drawing. Also included in this category are sheet-metal processes such as bending. Material Removal Processes: Material removal processes are operations that remove excess material from the starting work piece so that the resulting shape is the desired geometry. The most important processes in this category are machining operations such as turning, drilling, and milling. Machining is most commonly applied to solid metals. It is accomplished using cutting tools that are harder and stronger than the work metal. Grinding is another common process in this category, in which abrasive ceramic grits contained in a grinding wheel act as cutting tools to remove material. Property Enhancing Processes The second major type of processing operation is performed to improve mechanical or physical properties of the work material. These processes do not alter the shape of the part, except unintentionally in some cases. The most important property-enhancing processes involve heat treatments, which include various annealing and strengthening processes for metals and glasses. Sintering of powdered metals and ceramics mentioned earlier, is also a heat treatment that strengthens a pressed-powder metal work part. Surface Processing Operations These operations include cleaning, surface treatments, and coating and thin-film deposition processes. Cleaning includes both chemical and mechanical processes to remove dirt, oil, and other contaminants from the surface. Coating and thin film deposition processes apply a coating of material to the exterior surface of the work part. Coating operations are most commonly applied to metal parts, less commonly to ceramics and polymers. In many cases, coatings are used on assemblies; for example, welded automobile bodies are painted and clear coated. There are a number of good reasons to apply coatings to the surface of a part or product: (1) corrosion protection, (2) color and appearance, (3) wear resistance, and (4) preparation for subsequent processing.
ASSEMBLY OPERATIONS The second basic type of manufacturing operation is assembly, in which two or more separate parts are joined to form a new entity. Components of the new entity are connected together either permanently or semi permanently. Permanent joining processes include welding, brazing, soldering, and adhesive bonding. They form a joint between components that cannot be easily disconnected. Welding is a materials-joining process in which two or more parts are coalesced at their contacting surfaces using a suitable application of heat and/or pressure. It is the most important process commercially. Brazing is a joining process in which a filler metal is melted and distributed by capillary action between two surfaces of the metal parts being joined. Soldering can be defined in the same terms, the difference being that the filler metal in brazing melts at a temperature above 450 (840F), whereas in soldering, the filler metal C melts at a temperature below this level. Adhesive bonding is a joining process in which a filler material (the adhesive, usually a polymer) is used to hold two (or more) closely spaced parts together by surface attachment. Mechanical assembly methods are available to fasten two (or more) parts together in a joint that can be conveniently disassembled. The use of screws, bolts, nuts, and other threaded fasteners are important traditional methods in this category. Other mechanical assembly techniques that form a more permanent connection include rivets, press fitting, and expansion fits.
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