Machine Shop

Northrop Grumman operates a full-service, state-of-the-art computer numerical control (CNC) machine shop, offering turning, milling, modeling, electrical discharge machining (EDM), welding and inspection services. Northrop Grumman can complete quick turnaround prototype and multi-part run jobs. The company specializes in machining difficult types of materials, ranging from rubber and composites to rare materials (such as TZM, Inconel and titanium) and everything in between. Northrop Grumman also specializes in remote energetic machining, and has a large diamond wire saw for sectioning loaded test articles. Consultations are available for any job in any area, any time.

Lathes

Northrop Grumman's machine shop features multiple conventional and numerical control (NC) hybrid lathes as well as an NC turning center. The shop's lathes are capable of handling parts up to 27 inches in diameter and up to 10 feet long. The turning center has multiple tool turret and bar feeder capabilities. Northrop Grumman's machines are capable of tolerances down to ± 0.5 mil (± 0.0005 inches) and can directly download programs from computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software.

Milling

The machine shop also includes 3-axis and 4-axis CNC milling centers with capacities up to 20 x 40 x 20 inches XYZ, and 2-axis CNC knee mills with capacities up to 40 inches. These machines are capable of high-speed milling, milling of hard materials (up to 65 Rockwell C), and 3D or multiple surface machining. They also support direct download of CAD/CAM programs. Northrop Grumman also supports remote propellant machining, and remotely controlled live motor dissection using a large diamond wire saw.

CAD/CAM Modeling

Northrop Grumman's machine shop uses MasterCam X6 for 3D CAD/CAM and solid model design. Using this software, machinists can program and verify the tool path for lathe, mill, and wire machining processes. MasterCam fully integrates with other systems such as NX, Ideas and Pro-E, and supports translating and importing solid model files.

Wire EDM

Northrop Grumman's wire EDM machine is a 5-axis Mitsubishi FX 20. It features a CAD/CAM interface and an anti-electrolysis (AE) system. The EDM machine offers wire cutting diameters including: 0.012, 0.010 and 0.008 inches, and has a capacity of 20 x 14 x 11 inches.

Welding

Northrop Grumman's certified weld shop includes the ability to perform gas tungsten arc welding, flux core welding, gas metal arc welding, shielded metal arc welding, plasma cutting and acetylene welding, cutting and sliver brazing. The shop team can also develop weld procedures for unusual materials.

Inspection

Part inspection is performed with a Starrett manual coordinate measuring machine (CMM) and the Hexagon metrology software. Using the inspection points, Northrop Grumman can reverse engineer a part to a CAD drawing. Measurement accuracy is up to 0.0002 inches.

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