The ADMS Lab has migrated to the new EPIC facility. The basic components are still the same as described here.

The centerpiece of the ADMS lab is a state-of-the-art automated manufacturing cell.The Lab is used in ME345, a junior-level course on Manufacturing Automation. The emphasis is on a systems point of view of the manufacturing process and the role each component plays in an integrated system.

The main components of the ADMS Lab are:

  • Robots
  • Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC)
  • CNC machines
  • Sensors, including a vision system
  • Software modules for CAD/CAM, CIM, and Simulation
  • Communication networking

The ADMS Lab cell consist of a set of stations arranged around a conveyor belt as shown…

Control Station

The control station contains the central computer, the PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) and its terminal.  It does not contain a robot or any production devices.

CNC Station

The CNC station contains the CNC computer and controller, the CNC machines (two milling machines and one lathe) ERV7/9 robots, sensors, buffers and a small linear conveyor.

QC (Quality Control) Station

The QC station contains the QC computer and controller, two CNC mills, one CNC Lathe, the ERV9 Robot, a vision system, sensors and buffers.  The devices are used for inspection of part quality based primarily on machine vision.

The following elements are common to both the CNC and QC stations:

  • An ACL controller which coordinates the operation of the station and controls the robot and any peripheral devices.
  • A PC for user interface to the station controller and device controllers or other software.
  • Devices that perform an operation in the production cycle, such as CNC machines.
  • Two SCORBOT-ER7/9 robots which perform material handling tasks such as loading and unloading a part into a CNC machine, loading it onto the pallets, etc.
  • A peripheral device that aids the robot in the material handling tasks, such as a linear slide-base that supports the robots in the CNC stations.

In addition the stations contain other devices that perform production activity such as material removal or online inspection.

Design Stations

The design stations contain PCs loaded with several software tools: design packages, production tools and production system simulation and control. These include CAD/CAM software and the OpenCIM package to run the entire setup as a single CIM system.

What students learn

As part of the ADMS lab experience in (12 modules), students manufacture various parts designed on a CAD system and then fabricated using computer-controlled machines

The CAD software package used in the lab allows the user to not only design a part but to also generate the CNC machine code. There are two basic types of machines in the ADMS Lab: Universal Milling Machines and Lathes. Each of these machines requires different types of programs in order to work. The CAM software has two main components: 3-D Machining and 3-D Turning, for milling and turning respectively.

After the students gain experience on how CAD/CAM works, they learn how to load a program onto a machine and how to set up the machine in order to fabricate the required part. Additional lab sessions are geared towards teaching quality control, process control, system integration, and information processing in an automated manufacturing environment. Finally, the students get an exposure to computer simulation software (Extend and SimEvents) for performance evaluation of the entire manufacturing setup and gain insight on how to improve on that.

The course includes a final project where students in groups of 2 or 3 select any topic relevant to the objectives of the course.