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BEng in Precision Engineering

Course Code: LC283


Level

07

Duration

3 Years

Department

Mechanical & Automobile Engineering


CAO Points

227

Course Type

Undergraduate - CAO

Location

Limerick

Precision engineering is the design, manufacturing and measurement of highly specified parts for the medical, aerospace, automotive, oil and gas exploration and related industries. Students learn how to work with both manual and CNC machines to produce parts from an initial design to a final product. 

 

 

 

 

What are the entry requirements?

Leaving Certificate

A minimum of 5 O6/H7 grades in Leaving Certificate subjects, including Mathematics and English/Irish.

Mature Applicants

Candidates applying as mature applicants may be required to attend an interview and may be requested to take an aptitude test to prove their suitability for a place on this programme.

Level 6 Craft Certificate (Trade) such as Fitting or Toolmaking, or National/Higher Certificate

Candidates who hold a Senior Trade Certificate and/or National Craft Certificate or holders of a National/Higher Certificate (Level 6) in Engineering or Technology may be considered for admission to Year 2 of this programme subject to a satisfactory interview.

Who can I contact?

What modules will I study?

  • Year 1

    Title: Mechanical Engineering Science

    Credits: 10 Credits

    read more »

    To develop an understanding of the basic laws of physics and their application to engineering.


    Title: Engineering Computing

    Credits: 05 Credits

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    This module introduces the learner to 'Microsoft Office 2016' computing applications including MS Word, MS Excel, MS Powerpoint, MS Access and MS Project. Learners will start with basic applications and then progress through to an advanced level. The learner will develop a knowledge of how to apply the software to useful engineering applications such as formal report writing (laboratory), charting engineering data, producing equations and creating a technical database.

    Students will be assessed on their learning by a variety of strategies including Continuous Assessment, Project and Course Work, Examinations and Moodle based assignments. Continuous assessment is worth 40%, Christmas exam is worth 20% and the final exam is worth 40%.


    Title: Mechanical CAD and Design

    Credits: 10 Credits

    read more »

    Engineering Drawing is an essential communication technique for those involved in Engineering, the aim of this module is to give the student a comprehensive introduction to the standards used in the preparation of Engineering drawings. Computer Aided Design (CAD) systems are now the typical means by which Engineering drawings are produced, students will use 2D and 3D CAD software to prepare a portfolio of their work.

     

     


    Title: Introduction to CNC Programming and Operation

    Credits: 10 Credits

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    This module will introduce the learner to Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) technology and machining processes and operations. The emphasis of this modules is mainly focused on CNC programming, setting, and operation. The learner will be required to create part programmes using ISO G and M codes and conversational programming techniques on CNC milling machines and CNC Lathes. Tool setup, work setting and safe operation of the machines is fundamental to the production of components and the learners will be actively using CNC machines to realise their programmes.

    The principles of part programming are introduced and its relationship to precision machining processes is confirmed through practical coursework. The learner will engage in problem-solving skills by determining machining strategies through the selection of appropriate ISO limits and fits for specified machined components and implementing best practice to produce these components. The appropriate measurement methods and instruments which can be used for linear and angular measurements and geometrical parameters including surface finish, squareness, parallelism, roundness etc.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, metrology laboratory and workshop environments, which combined will greatly enhance the problem solving skills of the learner.


    Title: Engineering Technology

    Credits: 15 Credits

    read more »

    The aim of this module is to develop an understanding and a working knowledge of the engineering technology and materials used in industry.


    Title: Introduction to Mechanical Engineering Maths

    Credits: 10 Credits

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    Develop a recognition of the basics of engineering mathematics and use them to solve practical engineering problems.


  • Year 2

    Title: CNC Programming (CAM), Setting and Operation

    Credits: 10 Credits

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    The aim of this module is to advance the CNC knowledge and skills of the learner who already has an introductory knowledge of manually programing CNC machines. Through the introduction of Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) software, the learner will develop a greater depth knowledge in current CNC tooling technology and quality standards, analyse tooling usage, speeds, feeds, operation sequencing and machining strategies for greater machining efficiency. The learner will use industrial standard CAM software to program for manufacture, as well as set-up, and operate CNC mills and lathes to manufacture components typical to that produced in the precision engineering industry.

    The learner will be introduced to the principles of CAM technology through standalone CAM software and fully integrated CADCAM software for 2.5D milled components. Standalone CAM software provides the learner with experience in generating CAM programs through the generation of geometry and importing geometry from a range of file formats; whereas, integration CAM software will provide the learner with experience in generating CAM program data for CNC machines through the select of geometry from 3D CAD models. The knowledge gained from 2.5D exercises machined using 3-axis machining centres will be further developed for indexial 4-axis and 5-axis machined components. The learner will also use CAM software for 3D surface machining of components. As well as milling, the learner will also program, using CAM software, components for manufacture using 2-axis to 4-axis turning centres. The learner will document the verification of programs before post processing and transferring the data to the machine controller for manufacture.

    Using CAM simulation techniques the learner will analysis and evaluate the performance of precision engineered components for the purpose of planning and managing the operation of the manufacturing systems. This analysis will enable the learner to develop manufacturing plans and instructions for products in the precision engineering sector.

    The learner will carry out analyse of components manufactured through integrated CADCAM manufacturing techniques using Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMM) and Vision measurement Machines (VMM). Analysis by CMM and VMM will enhance the learner’s knowledge of geometric tolerancing, profile and surface measurement and will also introduce the learner to the associated software for CMM and VMM technology to enable model based investigations to be conducted.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, computer laboratory and workshop environments.

     


    Title: Engineering Technology and Maintenance

    Credits: 15 Credits

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    This module in Engineering Technology and Maintenance introduces the learner to advanced technologies, procedures and techniques as used by the modern mechanical or manufacturing engineer. The module has four main elements including metrology, material science, manufacturing processes and maintenance. All four elements are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations as required by a code of good practice.

    The workshop content forms a very important element of this module and the material given in the lecture is positively reinforced in the workshop setting. Learners will utilise practical workshop activities to create parts, assemblies and projects to industry standards. The use of metrology laboratory work create the opportunity of the student to self-assess the quality of their work. This learning is supported through the linking of lectures to this coursework, assessments and development of problem based learning and experiential learning.

    A variety of learning resources will be strategically used to integrate a variety of learning strategies into the module. Lectures linked to practical content through supporting printed materials, access to electronic resources such as Moodle, SharePoint. Integration of Computer Aided Design skills in project work, coursework design. Guest lectures, company visits and Industry case studies are used to enliven content and to link module content to industrial applications.

    Assessment of learning in this modules is carried out in a variety of forms to evaluate a range of learning styles in both formative and summative assessment. Students will complete written exams to evaluate learning of advanced theory and practical class in a formative assessment process. Presentations and submission of portfolios will allow the use of summative assessment as part of formative assessment. Assessment of practical coursework to ensure that learners have reached industry standards in engineering and have achieved the necessary level of skills, knowledge and competence to work safely in industry.


    Title: Mech Eng Maths & Programming

    Credits: 10 Credits

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    Strengthen the knowledge of mathematical fundamentals with the aim of solving more complex practical Engineering problems. Developing programming, debugging and engineering computation skills using software such as Visual Basic in Excel.


    Title: Six Sigma and Metrology

    Credits: 10 Credits

    read more »

    This module is an introduction to the principles of six sigma and metrology standards to the learner with no prior engineering experience. The principles of geometric tolerancing, gauge repeatability and reproducibility are introduced and its relationship to precision machining processes is confirmed through practical coursework. The learner will use appropriate measurement methods and instruments for linear and angular measurements and geometrical parameters including surface finish, squareness, parallelism, roundness etc.

    The learner will carry out analysis of components manufactured through integrated CADCAM manufacturing techniques using Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMM) and Vision measurement systems ;and various manual measuring equipment . Analysis by CMM will enhance the learners knowledge of geometric tolerancing, profile and surface measurement and will also introduce the learner to the associated software for CMM technology to enable model based investigations to be conducted.

    This module will introduce the learner to the Six Sigma DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyse, Implement and Control) problem solving methodology. This module is aimed at gaining an ASQ yellow belt qualificiation and will be the first step to gaining an ASQ green belt qualification. Through the completion of the module learners will understand the structure project teams and the roles different team members. This module will introduce some of the fundamental concepts in statistics. This will lead to more advanced statistical techniques used in problem solving in a modern production environment

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, metrology laboratory and workshop environments, which combined will greatly enhance the problem solving skills of the learner.


    Title: Industrial Machine Mechanics - Statics and Dynamics

    Credits: 10 Credits

    read more »

    The aim of this module is to develop a knowledge of the fundamental principles of machine mechanics and dynamics of industrial machinery, to the learner who already has an introduction to engineering science. Knowledge gained from this module will provide the learner with the analytical capability to solve practical and relevant industrial mechanical engineering problems.

    As part of this module the learner will apply the principles of mechanics to construct and solve mathematical models which describe the effects of force and motion on a variety of structures and machines that are of concern to engineers in the manufacturing industry. The methodical approach to machine mechanics will develop the learner’s ability to carry out coursework through logical thinking and effective communication and represent work in a clear, logical and concise manner; all of these skills are important to engineers in the precision industry.

    This module also discusses the applied aspects of machine mechanics to include kinematics of machinery, force analysis of machinery, balance of machinery, vibration in machines. Practical application of a theoretical knowledge will enhance the learner’s knowledge in preparation for a practical environment.

     This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, metrology laboratory and workshop environments, which combined will greatly enhance the problem solving skills of the learner.


    Title: CAD & Design

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    The use of computer aided design (CAD) systems in industry has become an essential part of the modern working environment. It is used at all stages of the design period, from conceptualisation and production of working drawings to the production of virtual reality images, prototypes, and final products. This unit aims to further candidates understanding of the CAD Parametric Modelling environment, in terms of hardware, software and physical surroundings, and the concepts of mechanical engineering design that accompany this environment. It will explore the typical composition of a CAD Parametric Modelling systems and Health and Safety matters that are associated with safe working practices.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, metrology laboratory and workshop environments, which combined will greatly enhance the problem solving skills of the learner.

    Learners will utilise a range of learning strategies while utilising design skills, computer aided design and analysis of components and systems of components.


  • Year 3

    Title: Advanced CNC Machining 1

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    The aim of this module is to advance the CNC knowledge and skills of the learner who already has an introductory knowledge of CNC machining. The learner will develop a greater depth knowledge in current CNC tooling technology and quality standards, analyse tooling usage, speeds, feeds, operation sequencing and machining strategies for greater machining efficiency. The learner will program, set-up, and operate CNC mills and lathes.

    The learner’s knowledge of ISO programming will be developed for more advanced CNC machining techniques, development of macros, advanced canned cycles, multiple-part environment and multiple-component machining.

    The learner will be introduced to industrial standard computer-aided-manufacturing (CAM) software for machine centres and turning centres for the manufacture of 2D and 3D surface machining. The CAM software will allow the learner to simulate 3-axis, 4-axis and 5-axis machining centres and 2-axis to 4-axis turning centres to verify programmes before post processing and transferring the data to the machine controller.

    A CAD/CAM integrated approach to manufacturing will be developed in order to introduce the learner to a process of 3D solid model generation to preparation of program data for CNC machines.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, computer laboratory and workshop environments.

    A variety of assessment techniques will be utilised in this module. Learners will be required to demonstrate their practical competence in the use of CNC machine tools and evaluate the performance on their programmes. The use of coursework, end of term exams will be utilised to measure the students learning. A variety of teaching and learning strategies will be utilised in the development to actively engage the students learning. The use of industry standard equipment in a practical environment and the use of simulation software, online resources such a manufacturer’s catalogues and resources will be utilised to ensure industry standards will be achieved.


    Title: Advanced Six Sigma and Metrology 1

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This module introduces the learner to adcanced six sigma tools appropriate for the precision machining industry and other regulated manufacturing environments such as medical device, aerospace and automotive. The statistical aspect of the module uses techniques for analysing multiple production systems with the aims of identifying critcal underlying factors and how they interact with other variable in the system. This will enable the learner to develp process optimisation plans using design of experiments. On completion of this work the learner will also have gained the knoledge to employ methods for maintaining improvements so that they can be sustained ober a prolonged period of time.

    Many of the statistical techniques in this module are very applicable to the medical device manufacturing industry in particular orthopaedic implants. Due to the close relationship between the module content and the requirements for the medical device industy, this module introduces the learner to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) which are the cornerstone of the process validation and change control systems in any regulated manufactuing environment.

    The metrology aspect of the module provides the learner with the skills to programme co-ordinate measuring machines (CMMs) for the inspection of complex geometrical shapes such as hip and knee orthopaedic implants. On completion of this section of the module the learner will have the knowledge to create a part programme in accordance with an engineering drawing, interrogate the data collected from the CMM programme and create a customised report to determine if the component has reached the required quality standards

     

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, metrology laboratory and workshop environments, which combined will greatly enhance the problem solving skills of the learner.

     

    This module introduces the learner to advanced six sigma tools appropriate for the precision machining industry and other regulated industries such as medical device and manufacturing. The statistical aspect of the module uses techniques for analyzing multiple production systems with the aim of identifying sources of error and variation. They are also used for identifying critical underlying factors and how they interact with other variables in the system. This will enable the learner to develop process optimization plans using design of experiments. On completion of this work the learner will also have gained the knowledge employ methods for maintaining improvements so that they can be sustained over a prolonged period of time.

     

     

     

     

     

    Many of the statistical techniques in this module are very applicable to medical device manufacturing in particular orthopedic implants. Due to the close relationship between the module content and the requirements for the medical device industry, this module introduces the learner to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) which are the cornerstone of the process validation system in any regulated manufacturing environment.

     

    The metrology aspect of the module provides the learner with the skills to programme co-ordinate measurement machines (CMMs) for complex geometrical shapes such as hip and knee orthopedic implants. On completion of this section of the module the learner will have the knowledge to create a part programme for the inspection of a complex component in accordance with the engineering drawing, interrogate the data collected from the CMM programme and create a customized report to determine if the component has reached the required quality standards

     


    Title: Applied Mechanical Engineering Mathematics 1

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    The aim of this module is to provide a detailed and in-depth understanding of engineering mathematical concepts, which will allow the learner to be able to apply this knowledge to solve practical and relevant mechanical engineering problems.


    Title: Process Planning

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This module aims to improve the learner’s knowledge and understanding of process planning in a precision engineering environment.

     

    The learner will develop a knowledge of modern manufacturing processes through the completion of coursework in a practical workshop environment and will critically analyse the strategic usage of the manufacturing processes for specific components to increase the manufacturing efficiency, productivity and profitability of modern precision engineering industries. The module will also discuss the integration of manufacturing techniques to the learner with focus on the precision engineering industry. The role, implementation and monitoring of process planning in a modern precision engineering industry is analysed.


    This module is semesterised. Students will be assessed on their learning by a variety of strategies including Continuous Assessment, Course Work and Examinations. Continuous assessment is worth 50% and the final exam is worth 50%.

     

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations as required by a code of good practice. The practical content forms a very important element of this module and the material given in the lecture is positively reinforced in the workshop setting.

     

     


    Title: Material Selection

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This subject aims to improve the learners knowledge and understanding of materials used by engineers. Learners will apply relevant mechanical equations to practical problems, components and case studies. Learning is enhanced with the use of a material selection software package, (CES Edupack for example). Learners will also analyse mechanical components that are exposed to complex loading. This module will enhance their learning from the Fluids & Mechanics module in Yr 2 and coincide with the Applied Mathematics module in Yr 3. This module is semesterised. Mechanics and Failure Analysis will follow on from it in Semester 2


    Title: Group Project

    Credits: 05 Credits

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    This module involves active learning where learners participate in a work based group project. The group project topic may have industrial links and involves the practical application of research, design, engineering principles, materials analysis and manufacturing. The group project allows for team development where each member has a defined role to play.

    This module also incorporates professional development, which aims to advance the learner's transferrable skills, in order to prepare for employment. Transferrable skills such as project management and organisation, creative problem solving, technical writing and presentation skills are developed in this module.


    Title: Advanced Engineering Technology

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This module in advanced engineering technology presents in great detail both the traditional and modern manufacturing processes to the learner. Advanced and emerging technologies used in modern precision engineering industries are analysed and reviewed by the learner who already has an introductory knowledge of engineering technologies and manufacturing processes. Modern machine tooling, work and tool holding techniques are also presented.

    This module is semesterised. Students will be assessed on their learning by a variety of strategies including Continuous Assessment, Course Work and Examinations. Continuous assessment is worth 50% and the final exam is worth 50%.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations as required by a code of good practice. The workshop content forms a very important element of this module and the material given in the lecture is positively reinforced in the workshop setting.


    Title: Advanced CNC Machining 2

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    The aim of this module is to advance the CNC knowledge and skills of the learner who already has completed Advanced CNC machining 1. The learner will use industrial standard computer-aided-manufacturing (CAM) software for complex components. These complex components will required the learner to investigate advanced techniques to machine parts with complex 3D surfaces, use simultaneous 5-axis motion and to use advanced milling techniques on turned components.

    The learner will develop a greater depth knowledge in current CNC tooling technology and quality standards, analyse tooling usage, speeds, feeds, operation sequencing and machining strategies for greater machining efficiency. The learner will program, set-up, and operate CNC mills and lathes. The learner’s knowledge of ISO programming will be developed for more advanced CNC machining techniques, development of macros, advanced canned cycles, multiple-part environment and multiple-component machining.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, computer laboratory and workshop environments.

    A variety of assessment techniques will be utilised in this module. Learners will be required to demonstrate their practical competence in the use of CNC machine tools and evaluate the performance on their programmes. The use of coursework, end of term exams will be utilised to measure the students learning. A variety of teaching and learning strategies will be utilised in the development to actively engage the students learning. The use of industry standard equipment in a practical environment and the use of simulation software, online resources such a manufacturer’s catalogues and resources will be utilised to ensure industry standards will be achieved.


    Title: Advanced Six Sigma and Metrology 2

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This module introduces the learner to statistical techniques for performing advanced process optimsation. The aim of this modules is to broaden the learners statistical knowledge in process improvement methodologies applicable to the precision machining industry but also in other industries in particular pharmaceutical manufacturing. The design of experiments section of the module details tools which are frequently used in tese industries to control the implementation of process changes and improvements.

    The other statistical techniques will help the learner deal with difficults process in an industrial environment when they are not dunctioning as expected or erratically. The learner will have the ability to use these techniques for standalone process improvement or as an integral part of a process validation system. These techniques in combination with knowledge on failure modes and effects analysis and first article inspection will provide a learner with a robust working knowledge of any validation system used in a regulated manufactuing environment. The learner will be able to use the statistical tools to date to compile management reports and presentations detailing key business performance metrics.

    The metrology aspect of the module will deepen the learners co-ordinate measuring machine (CMM) programming knowledge. On completion of the module it is envisaged that a learner will be able to programme a CMM to inspect a part to an engineering drawing and produce an inspection report which will automatically determine if the component is acceptable or not without the need for human interpretation of the results.

    This module also discusses the rationale and implementation of Six Sigma in a precision engineering industry. The discussion of six sigma methods will focus on using statistical techniques to analyse production process, solve problems and optimise production processes to increase production efficiency and decrease costs. These aspects of the module will be assessed through the completion of a workplace based cost saving project. On completion of the module learners will have sufficient knowledge to complete and external ASQ green belt examination which is recognised in over 80 countries.

    All elements of the module are predicated upon safety and ethical considerations. This module is structured to provide a balance of theoretical and practical experience through classroom, metrology laboratory and workshop environments, which combined will greatly enhance the problem solving skills of the learner.


    Title: Applied Mechanical Engineering Mathematics 2

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    The aim of this module is to provide a detailed and in-depth understanding of engineering mathematical concepts, which will allow the learner to be able to apply this knowledge to solve practical and relevant mechanical engineering problems.


    Title: Mechanics & Failure Analysis

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This module aims to improve the learners knowledge and understanding of materials used by engineers. Learners will apply relevant mechanical equations to practical problems, components and case studies. Learning is enhanced with the use of a material selection software package, (CES Edupack for example). Learners will also analyse mechanical components that are exposed to complex loading. This module will enhance their learning from the Fluids & Mechanics module in Yr 2 and coincide with the Applied Mathematics module in Yr 3. This module is semesterised and follows on from the Material Selection module in semester 1


    Title: Individual Project

    Credits: 05 Credits

    read more »

    This module aims to develop the learner's ability to apply their technical skills and knowledge to complete an individual technical project. There may be capacity for the individual project to focus on a pre-existing group project, where the focus of the project may be in such areas as characterisation and test of an assembly, product improvements, risk assessment or any other relevant topic agreed between learner and supervisor.

    This module also incorporates professional development, which aims to advance the learner's transferrable skills, in order to prepare for employment. Transferrable skills such as project management and organisation, creative problem solving, technical writing and presentation skills are developed in this module.


Are there opportunities for further study?

Successful graduates may continue onto a L8 course such as B.Eng. (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering (A8285), B.Sc. (Hons) Process & Engineering Management (A8286) or other suitable engineering courses.          

 

 

What are the career prospects?

Graduates will find work as a Precision engineer using CAD/CAM to design and develop complex components using CNC machines.

Positions that graduates have worked in include:

  • Precision/Production/Manufacturing Engineer
  • Design engineer and development of complex parts
  • Additive Manufacturing (3D printing)
  • Metrology and Inspection
  • Process Management and control
  • Lean Engineer