CNC milling is the most common type of computer numerical control (CNC) machining, even more widely used than 3D printing. Combined, the CNC machines market is constantly growing and is predicted to have a global value of $93.45 billion by 2024. Much of that market growth will be driven by innovations and trends in CNC milling techniques.
Developments in CNC machine technology has reduced the cost of purchase, installation, and maintenance of CNC milling solutions for consumers and organizations. Furthermore, CNC milling services are becoming more streamlined and efficient, giving customers easier access to the technology.
If you are unfamiliar with the differences between CNC machining and 3D printing, it is important to know CNC milling is subtractive machining and 3D printing is additive. In other words, a CNC milling process begins with a single blank block of material and cuts it away to mold the finished item. 3D printing technology builds the finished item from material, crafting from the ground up.
CNC milling has become very popular because it can provide greater constructing accuracy and functions with several materials, such as metals, plastics, and even wood. Benefits of CNC milling include:
Cutting tools in milling machines can model a workpiece material from multiple angles, allowing for more complex shapes and designs to be developed. Other precision machine processing tools are unable to deliver this level of flexibility and accuracy. The more axis on a machine the more complexity it can deliver.
CNC turning machines, lathes, or even 3D printers are limited to specific modelling, with the former two only really suited for cylinder shapes. CNC milling machines are much more versatile and can craft any shape inputted into its software. From irregular shapes to specific detailed designs, milling can handle it all.
A recent report from Transparency Market Research highlighted the CNC machining market will expand to a dollar value of $93.45 billion by 2024. Organizations are increasingly turning to CNC technology because of its ability at improving efficiency in manufacturing.
Several companies have become leaders in the CNC machining marketplace, including HaaS Automation, Heidenhain, Siemens AG, Mitsubishi, Fanuc Corporation. By 2015, these five companies accounted for 60% of the overall CNC industry, but even smaller companies are finding success and creating a competitive market.
Innovation is driving growth of CDC milling solutions and companies are leveraging technology to create more adaptive software updates that are easier to use and engage more users. Lathe parts have become more accurate, allowing for the successful machining of items up to 457.2mm in diameter and larger workloads are being supported.
Another technology transforming the industry is 5-axis machining performance, allowing complex parts to be machined more efficiently. Leveraging multiple axis tech provides users with a way of developing several complicated design elements more quickly thanks to increased cutting performance and easier tool paths. CNC milling machines are far more versatile because they function through a computer and can function across axis from 1 axis to 5 axes.
Development of controllers has also played a part in making CNC milling solutions more useable by a wider userbase. Next generation controllers with ultra-fast CPU integration deliver increased operational performance than older CNC machines. Improved performance means speedier modelling and manufacturing, while data can also be processed more quickly in milling operations.
CNC Milling Growth
As the CNC milling industry continues to grow, its importance at transforming the milling world is becoming increasingly obvious. By leveraging innovations through digital technologies, machines can now handle many problems which could not be handled by previous traditional mills. Technology in the CNC market has brought efficiency and higher quality results.