Computer-aided design (CAD) involves creating computer models defined by geometrical parameters. These models typically appear on a computer monitor as a three-dimensional representation of a part or a system of parts, which can be readily altered by changing relevant parameters. CAD systems enable designers to view objects under a wide variety of representations and to test these objects by simulating real-world conditions.
Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) uses geometrical design data to control automated machinery. CAM systems are associated with computer numerical control (CNC) or direct numerical control (DNC) systems. These systems differ from older forms of numerical control (NC) in that geometrical data are encoded mechanically. Since both CAD and CAM use computer-based methods for encoding geometrical data, it is possible for the processes of design and manufacture to be highly integrated. Computer-aided design and manufacturing systems are commonly referred to as CAD/CAM.
THE ORIGINS OF CAD/CAM
CAD had its origins
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