An Engineering Evolution: From Manual To Digital

Engineering has always been a big part of human history; even before we had the tools necessary to create some of the complex inventions that we use on a regular basis today. Engineering is essential for evolution as man is constantly developing new ways to engineer change and bring the human race into new stages of history.

However, as with everything else in the 21st century, there has been a natural shift from hardware to computer software and that is no different in the world of engineering. There has been steady progress in recent years but thanks to development in CNC engineering and software such as CAD and CAM; computers are now an integral part of our fundamental desires to produce new creations.

What is CNC Engineering?

The CNC stands for computer numerical control and the term basically refers to the process by which machines, control by figures entered into a computer, produce precision turned components that are usually made from metal but sometimes plastic, foam or ceramics. The machines are monitored by specifically trained engineers who only make up a small percentage of the amount of overall engineers working in the world today.

Thanks to these CNC turning machines businesses are able to cut down on wastage and staff costs whilst improving their productivity and their ability to work to the strict requirements of lucrative industries such as the medical and defence sectors.


CNC turning machines were developed in the 1940s but recent advancements have made them even more valuable to the engineering businesses that use them and the industries that rely on these businesses for their parts. Developments in these machines have meant that they can now produce precision turned parts that are of a high quality and within a strict time frame.

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In recent years spindles have been added to the CNC turning machines to improve control whilst cutting 3-D components and the machines are now able to change tools from a magazine which is situated within the box that they are built inside of. Modern technology even means that these machines can be left alone once they have been initiated and they can send a message to the operator’s smartphone if any problems should arise.

Becoming A CNC engineer

As mentioned above, CNC engineers are only a small part of the engineering industry on the whole but as everything slowly moves towards being computer software controlled there is a bigger calling for them. In order to become a CNC engineer you need to have a degree in computer engineering and be competent in mathematics also.

These engineers not only design the machines but also work closely with the people who operate them and so could become trainers of how to use then in the working environment. Whilst this niche field of engineering is still growing CNC engineers are often encouraged to diversify their training to learn new techniques and increase their job prospects.

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