List of all ME courses

3 Credits
Spring term
Lecture only

Junior standing in engineering

Currently not offered

Course Description

Precision Machine Design is the science of a-priori identification of cause-effect relationships in machine tools that consist of more than one component, and the design of the machine tools to reduce sources of error to a satisfactory level. In industry, mitigating the sources of error in a dynamic or quasi-static machine is critical to ensuring that the machine executes a process that yields an acceptable product. In academic research, precision machine design is important not only for manufacturing but also to a wider range of engineering applications. For example, a fundamental understanding and implementation of precision engineering principles is key to the development of optical systems like laser-based interferometers and alignment systems.


  • Precision design principles
  • Sensor Mounting and Sensor Calibration
  • Machine level error budget with geometric and thermal errors
  • Structural design of joints and supports
  • Deterministic damping
  • Exact constraint design for flexures and couplings
  • Bearings design and selection
  • Power generation and Transmission Design

Learning Outcomes

  1. Understand and use the mathematics and physics behind precision engineering principles
  2. Identify sources of quasi-static and dynamic precision in machine tools
  3. Design machine tools based on precision engineering principles