Manufacturing engineering is a branch of engineering which deals with the study and application of Engineering techniques in manufacturing and production process. It requires the ability to plan to produce things, to research and to develop new tools, processes, equipment and to accumulates the facilities and systems for producing a quality product with the optimum expenses.
The design process is the key content in the manufacturing engineering because without a design or an idea you can’t produce anything. It is the approach to break down the large projects into small pieces of work. First of all, clear your problem before to obtain its solution, then you collect information about it from multiple sources. Then you make a prototype of your product, test it and collect feedback from the users. This is the whole design process in manufacturing an innovative product.
There are some basic steps involved in manufacturing engineering:
1. Idea generation
The design process starts with the idea generation. It means that bringing a concept into reality. You have to clarify your ideas about your product and decide on exactly what you want to produce.
2. Feasibility study
The feasibility study is also the main process in manufacturing a product. This study tells you whether the product you are producing will benefit you or not. In preparing such a report, a manufacturing engineer checks the total expenses of the product, its market value, machinery, the manufacturing place, etc. It also tells about that technical expertise needed to produce such a product and if the company can handle that project or not.
3. Preliminary design
When an organization generates an idea and makes a feasibility report, it makes its decision on whether it is beneficial to get into the project. If the assessment was positive, it then develops the first prototype of the product. This prototype is needed to test its functionality and deficiencies. It also helps in collecting feedback from users before making further productions. This prototype contains all the information about the final product and if the feedback is positive, then the company will make the final product.
4. Final design and manufacturing product
The final step would be to manufacture the product based on the final design files. All the information is gathered in the form of CAD files, these files contain all detail about the manufacturing process and assembly parts of the final product. The final design files also have a list of the components called Bill of Material (BOM). The CAD files and BOM are the most important files for a product because they contain all the information about the product and should they get accessed by a rival company, they can produce that product before you do. The other reason for their importance is that if there is any faulty information in these files, then the production cannot be done.
Importance of Manufacturing Engineering
Manufacturing Engineering is a special branch of the Mechanical Engineering. It focuses on such topics as Machine Tools, Materials Science, Tribology, and Quality Control. Manufacturing engineers are accountable for all aspects of the product designing, development, implementation, operation, and management of a manufacturing system. Manufacturing is the most important element in any engineering process. Previously, things were made by the hands, but nowadays, due to the implementation of automation techniques buy the majority of manufacturers, many products are made by automated systems like Robotic systems to reduce the cost and the time.
The Manufacturing Engineer is the one who has studied and received training in the manufacturing engineering discipline. A Manufacturing Engineer should satisfy the following qualities.
- Develop products, choose the best technologies and process to manufacture it.
- Plan and design the equipment and the factory to produce that product.
- Oversee, manage, maintain and improve that factory.