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ACCURACY. The degree of freedom from error, i.e. the degree of conformity to some standard. Accuracy is contrasted with precision. For example: four place numbers are less precise than six place numbers, however, a properly computed four place number might be more accurate than an improperly computed six place number.
ADAPT. A computer-aided NC parts programming language similar to APT, but with fewer capabilities. Developed for small to medium-scale computers and used basically for two-axis contouring.
ADAPTIVE CONTROL (AC). (1) The ability of a control system to change its own parameters in response to a measured change in operating conditions. (2) Machine control units in which feeds and/or speeds are not fixed. The control unit, working from feed back sensors, is able to optimize favorable situations by automatically increasing or decreasing the machining parameters. This secures optimum tool life or surface finish and/or machining costs or production rates.
ADAPTIVE CONTROL CONSTRAINED (ACC). A control system in which improved machine productivity is obtained through in-process measurement by using limiting values for machine parameters such as torque or spindle deflection.
ADAPTIVE CONTROL OPTIMIZED (ACO). A control system in which optimum machine productivity is obtained through in process measurement and adjustment of operating parameters.
ADDRESS. A character or group of characters that identifies a register, a particular part of storage, or some other data source or destination.
ALGORITHM. A prescribed set of well-defined rules for the solution of a problem in a finite number of steps.
ALPHANUMERIC CODE. A coding system consisting of characters, including numbers, letters, punctuation marks, and such signs as $, @, and #. Also referred to as alphameric code.
AMPLIFIER. Device for controlling power from a source so that more is delivered at the output than is supplied at the input. Source of power may be mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, electric, etc.
ANALOG. The use of physical variables, such as distance and rotation, to represent and correspond with numerical variables occurring in a computation. In NC, a system utilizing magnitudes or ratios of electrical voltages to represent physical axis positions.
ANALOG COMPUTER. A continuously measuring computer in which quantities are represented by physical variables. Problem parameters are translated into mechanical or electrical circuits as an analog for the physical phenomenon in question. An analog is used for each variable and produces analogs as output.
ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL-CONVERTER (ADC). Refers to a device which produces a digital output from an input in the analog form of physical motion or electrical voltages.
ANSI. American National Standards Institute, formerly known as ASA and USASI, its purposes include: (1) serving as the national institution for voluntary standardization and certification, (2) furthering voluntary standards, (3) assuring the interests of the public, including consumers, labor, industry, and government, (4) providing the need for standards and certification programs, (5) establishing, promulgating, and administering procedures for recognition and approval of standards as American National Standards, (6) encouraging existing organizations to prepare and submit certification programs for accreditation, (7) cooperating with government agencies, (8) promoting knowledge and use of American National Standards, (9) representing USA interests in international nontreaty standardization and certification organizations, (10) serving as a clearinghouse for information on standards, standardization, and certification in the USA and abroad.
APL (A PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE). A problem solving language designed for use at remote terminals, with special capabilities for handling arrays and for performing mathematical functions.
APT (AUTOMATICALLY PROGRAMMED TOOLS). A computer-assisted program system describing parts illustrated on a design and defining in a sequence of statements, the part geometry, cutter operations, and machine tool capabilities used for turning, point-to-point work, and multiaxis milling.
ARCHITECTURE. Preset, physical, and logical operating characteristics of a control system or control unit.
ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE. Research and study in methods for the development of a machine that can improve its run operations. The development or capability of a machine that can proceed or perform functions that are normally concerned with such human intelligence as learning, adapting, reasoning, self-correction, automatic improvement. In a more restricted sense, the study of techniques for more effective use of digital computers by improved programming techniques.
ASCII (AMERICAN STANDARD CODE FOR INFORMATION INTERCHANGE). A standard data-transmission code that was introduced to achieve compatibility between data devices. It consists of 7 information bits and one parity bit for error-checking purposes, thus allowing 128 code combinations.
ASSEMBLE. The basic element employed when one or more objects are put on or into another object so that they fit or contact each other in a predetermined relation to form a unit.
ASSEMBLY LANGUAGE. (1) A computer-oriented language whose instructions are usually one-to-one correspondence with computer instructions and that may provide facilities such as the use of macroinstructions. (2) A low-level symbolic language, usually machine dependent, that requires an assembler program to translate the symbolic code to the corresponding machine code (contrast with compiler language.)
AUTOMATA THEORY. Relates to the development of theory which relates the study of principles of operations and applications of automatic devices to various behaviorist concepts and theories.
AUTOMATED ASSEMBLY. Assembly by means of operations performed automatically by machines. A computer system may monitor the production and quality levels of the assembly operations.
AUTOMATED PROCESS PLANNING. Creation of process plans, with partial or total computer assistance, for items in a particular family.
AUTOSPOT (AUTOMATIC SYSTEM FOR POSITIONING OF TOOLS). A general-purpose computer program used in preparing instructions for NC positioning and straight-cut systems.
AUTOMATION. The implementation of processes by automatic means; the theory, art or technique of making a process more automatic; the investigation, design, development, and application of methods of rendering processes automatic, self-moving, or self-controlling; the conversion of a procedure, process, or equipment to automatic operation.
AUXILIARY FUNCTION. A function of a machine other than the control of the coordinates of a workpiece or tool. Usually on/off type operations such as starting and stopping a spindle or coolant pump.
AXIS. A general direction relative motion between cutting tool and workpiece. The understanding of axes in rectangular coordinates is the basic keystone to understanding NC.
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