What is computer numerical control? What is motion control?

CNC stands for computer numerical control, logic devices applied to monitor and change an industrial machine that often makes a part by removing particles from material, such as a block of metal or wood. The computer precisely controls the coordinates in space for the tool that's removing particles to leave the desired shape for the part. CNC can be used in additive manufacturing and in simulation software to predetermine how a part will be made in a machine. Motion control is the planned, coordinated or managed guidance of moving devices, in rotational motion with motors, pumps, or fans or linear motion or multi-axis motion. In industrial applications, computerized motion control can occur in drives or another logic device, such as computer numerical control, industrial PCs, programmable logic controllers (PLCs), programmable automation controllers (PACs) or with a board-level device. In the case of an integrated motor and drive, the actuator and motion controller exist in one unit.
PID, APC July 3, 2018

Ladder logic’s future role in automation

Nine considerations when selecting a programming language. Ladder logic is favored by manufacturers in discrete industries, but as technology and automation evolve, its usefulness compared to other IEC 61131-3 programming languages and PC programming depends on application complexity and other factors.

By Jon Breen, Breen Machine Automation Services
Business of Engineering February 8, 2017

How to select a motor for an industrial application

Cover Story: Understanding the main types of loads, motors, and applications can help simplify industrial motor and accessory selection.

By Bryan Sisler
Motors, Drives September 24, 2012

Permanent magnet motors outperform induction motors in many applications

Permanent magnet synchronous motors offer significant advantages on high-energy-consuming and high-dynamic applications, compared to induction motors. See table, photo gallery.

By Harald Poesch
System Integration June 19, 2012

Adding a drive to meet energy regulation

Part of a European motor efficiency standard allows use of a variable speed drive to meet energy-saving requirements.

By Frank J. Bartos, PE