CAM or Computer Aided Manufacturing is the use of computers and software to control machinery or tools in the manufacturing of workpieces. CAM is a subsequent process used after CAD, using the model generated in the CAD process and inputting it into CAM software, which then controls the machine or tool.
The primary purpose of CAM is to create a faster production process and allow more precise dimensions and material consistency, minimising waste and reducing energy consumption.
An overview of CAD from Wikipedia:
“Traditionally, CAM has been considered as a numerical control (NC) programming tool, wherein two-dimensional (2-D) or three-dimensional (3-D) models of components generated in CAD software are used to generate G-code to drive computer numerically controlled (CNC) machine tools. Simple designs such as bolt circles or basic contours do not necessitate importing a CAD file.
As with other “Computer-Aided” technologies, CAM does not eliminate the need for skilled professionals such as manufacturing engineers, NC programmers, ormachinists. CAM, in fact, leverages both the value of the most skilled manufacturing professionals through advanced productivity tools, while building the skills of new professionals through visualization, simulation and optimization tools.”