The Ecole Polytechnique Fedérale de Lausanne, EPFL, is one of the federally owned two large technical universities of Switzerland, the other being in Zürich. The CAD/CAM (LICP) laboratory of the EPFL is part of the department of Mechanical Engineering in the school of Engineering. The CAD/CAM laboratory deals with software tools for all aspects of the product lifecycle from early phase design through design, process planning, manufacture, product use and end-of-life. LICP, led by Professor Paul Xirouchakis, has participated in many successful European research projects in these areas as well as national research projects and performing in-house research as a platform for further development.
As part of FoFdation, LICP is working on standardisation aspects, since EPFL is currently responsible for organising the development of the STEP-NC standard (ISO 14649) for machine tool control and work actively with POSTECH and ECN in this respect. As well as standardisation, there are other aspects which are being worked on, like STEP-NC file generation, and verification of the new machine tool model for advanced machine tool control. The advanced machine tool control work involves checking whether the standard supports the information needs for control. Another important aspect is how optimisation can be done for STEP-NC implementations on particular machines. EPFL is also actively working on dissemination of information about STEP-NC for other partners and potential users and developers.