ME 1800, “Manufacturing Science, Prototyping, and Computer Controlled Machining,” is taught at WPI four times per year. The course content and curriculum have been developed jointly by professors Brown and Bergstrom in the Mechanical Engineering Department at WPI and is constantly subject to revision and update through a continuous improvement program.
The primary objective of the course is to empower engineers and engineering students enrolled in the course to become better engineers. Whether it is consciously considered or not the primary reason for all engineering work is to facilitate the manufacture of goods. It is our believe therefore that engineers that have an understanding of manufacturing processes and manufacturing science (the study of manufacturing processes) will be better engineers. We are with this course trying to manufacture engineers who understand how things are made so that they will be able to design things that can be made. For reference the published course description is listed below:
This course introduces students to manufacturing science and engineering and prototype part production. It emphasizes CNC (computer-controlled) machining. Students will learn how to go from a solid (CAD, computer-aided design) model to a machined part, using CAM software (computer-aided manufacturing) and CNC machining. They will also be exposed to associated issues in manufacturing process analysis, engineering design, material science, and in dimensional and surface metrology. Using machining as an example, the science of manufacturing processes is developed in a combination of class work and laboratory experience. The laboratory experience includes an experimental component that associates process variables in machining with performance and machined part quality. Students whose project work will necessitate fabrication of parts and those who want a background in manufacturing process science and engineering should take this course.
To fulfill the primary objective listed above and to cover the specific items listed in the course description the course consists of a series of reading assignments, lectures and video presentations, in class exercises, laboratory exercises, and online and hands on quizzes and examinations. Although some of the work including laboratory exercises and some quizzes may be done in groups and as collaborative exercises, some of the assignments and quizzes and examinations will based on individual effort and will be indicated as such.