June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
12.60.1 - 12.60.9
Manufacturing Processes Course for Mechanical Engineers
Engineers need to have a working, hands-on knowledge of manufacturing processes. At California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, with few exceptions, all engineering students take freshman-level manufacturing processes courses. Mechanical Engineering students generally take three lab-oriented courses dealing with machining, foundry, and welding processes. The machining processes course, which has ten three-hour labs, introduces typical machining equipment, such as lathes, mills, and drill presses. Both hand-operated and computer- controlled machines are used. Labs are limited to 20 students per section in a lab setting that contains 10 engine lathes, 5 manual/CNC vertical mills, 1 horizontal mill, 4 drill presses, 1 turret drill press, 1 CNC lathe, and 1 CNC bed mill. Starting with measurements, students are given lab exercises that illustrate the techniques needed to manufacture a machined part. Following measuring, there is a two-week introduction to the machines, which requires individuals to operate the lathes and teams of two to operate the mills. Next, the students are given a two-week project where they individually make a screwdriver using the available equipment. The final project consists of making an air motor in teams of five, where each team is responsible for producing one-half of the parts of the air motor. During the two projects the students develop and use routing and operation sheets for each machined part.
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo (Cal Poly) has both a statewide and national reputation, and has consistently ranked in the top of the U.S. News and World Report listings as a university and in engineering programs. Cal Poly was founded in 1903 as a primarily residential campus in a small city located half way between Los Angeles and San Francisco on the Central Coast. In 2006, of the 18,722 students attending the university, 17,777 were undergraduates whose average credit load per quarter was 14.00. 4,706 students (26.5% of the student body) were enrolled in the 13 programs in Engineering and Computer Science. During the 2006 Fall Quarter, 1,241 new freshman and 145 new transfer engineering students enrolled in the university.
Since Cal Poly students must declare their major before admission, undergraduates in professional programs take some major-related courses at the freshman level that promote the campus philosophy of “learn by doing” and stresses hands-on lab activities. For example, Electrical Engineering students take one or two courses in electronics manufacturing, while Mechanical Engineering students take courses in machining, welding, and foundry. The early introduction to professional experience is geared to help new students gain some needed self confidence their first year, and thereby increase their odds of retention in their chosen major. Historically, these courses have not been used to satisfy any ABET criteria1. In addition, these manufacturing lab-oriented courses serve as essential training for many graduating engineering majors whose senior project obligation requires building a practical, operating device. To support the students in building their student club and senior projects, the Mechanical
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2007 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015