The Rotatives Group has a vision for right first time manufacture of new part introduction designs including new material types and the most challenging part geometries.

The group’s goal is for the AMRC to be the first choice for data rich new product manufacture within AMRC partner facilities.

They are a world leading centre for applying and developing state of the art cutting tool technologies to disc geometries and materials. The team brings significant cost savings to UK disc and shaft manufacturing by taking high performance disc and shaft machining processes through to final production.


Research areas include:

Turning Technology

  • CBN turning
  • Swarf control
  • B-axis turning
  • Ceramic turning


  • Hole generation
  • D-shaped holes
  • Fir tree milling
  • On-machine broaching


  • Inconel
  • Udimet
  • Waspaloy
  • Ti6-4
  • RR1000
  • Dual microstructure
  • Transition zone

Part Geometry

  • Thin wall machining
  • Design changes
  • Slim line forgings

Surface Finish

  • Pick-up
  • CME

Cutting Parameters

  • Optimised cutting parameters and tooling
  • Validated parameter windows


  • On-machine probing
  • On-machine scanning probe
  • On machine surface condition measurement

Minimal Intervention

  • Automated fixturing
  • Repeatable part placement

Post Processing

  • Shot peen
  • Etch
  • CMM inspection
  • De-burr / MEP

Reduced Operations

  • Adaptive distortion compensation
  • Advanced fixture design
  • Tool path optimisation

Process Monitoring

  • Distortion monitoring
  • Tool condition monitoring


WFL M100

Capable of machining the highest precision and complex geometries characterised in typical applications in the aerospace industry. Difficult to machine materials, high volume material removal and the frequent need for deep ID-machining operations make great demands on machining centres with the WFL M100 Millturn capable of satisfying them all.

Controlled by Siemens SINUMERIK 840D control with a maximum turning spindle speed of 1600rpm & a milling spindle speed of 6000rpm

Mori Seiki NT6600

The NT6600 Millturn machining centre can boast the world’s largest Y-axis travel, suitable for long/large-diameter work pieces. It combines the powerful NH Series spindle with advanced turning capabilities to deliver outstanding performance on a wide range of applications—from high-speed machining to heavy-duty cutting of complex parts.

Mori Seiki NMV8000

5-axis milling, turning and grinding machine equipped with the latest on-machine scanning probe technology from Renishaw (SPRINT). One of the most accurate and dynamically stable machine tools at the AMRC offering an ideal platform for both rotating and prismatic part machining.

Mori Seiki NT5400

5-axis milling and turning machine equipped with the latest on-machine scanning probe technology from Renishaw (SPRINT). Has twin chuck capability for to aid ‘green button’ manufacture and the capability of parallel turning utilising a second turret system.

Hermle C50

The capability of precise and reliable 5 axis machining of work pieces up to 2000 kg in weight. Difficult to machine materials can be manufactured to high precision

NC Programming / Machining Simulation

The team has a combined experience of over 75 years in NC Programming with Unigraphics NX being the main focus.

CG Tech Vericut Simulation software is used on all NC programs prior to running programs on the machine tools.

Fixture Design

The team has a wide range of experience developing concept fixture designs and taking these through to automated hydraulic fixturing suitable for production. Through collaborations with our dynamics technology group these designs are robust for the most difficult to machine materials and complex flexible geometries. Furthermore, through collaboration with our process modelling technology group, the designs and manufacturing methods enable vast reduction in the effects of residual stress distortions experienced during machining operations.

Cutting Technologies

In conjunction with major tooling suppliers including partners such as Sandvik, Seco & Technicut the AMRC can offer extensive process and application knowledge in combination with world class tools for milling, turning, drilling, boring and tool holding. This can help us provide powerful machining solutions to leading companies around the world. Aerospace, oil & gas, energy and medical industry solutions are, among many others, where we deploy highly specialised machining competence.


Phil Kirkland, technical fellow

Following a 32 year career in engineering working in both the aerospace and tool making industry, Phil joined the AMRC in 2010 as an NC Programmer within the Casings Team and worked on a variety of projects including process improvement and implementation and research into the machinability of new aerospace materials. He joined the Rotatives Group as technical fellow in May 2013 and leads a team of 8 NC programmers and project engineers.

Roger Wallis, technical Lead and NC programmer

Roger joined the AMRC in 2009, after many years in the engineering industry in a variety of roles. He was initially involved in providing design solutions for fixtures to accommodate parts which were subject to residual stress distortion. He provided NC Programs and assisted in the technical delivery of the HPDM (High Pressure Disc Machining) project. Further disc packages have been delivered in a variety of ‘difficult to machine’ materials including HRSA (Heat Resistant Super Alloys) improving productivity and conformance, whilst controlling the distortional aspects associated with machining forgings.


Richard Mothersole, NC programmer

Richard joined the AMRC in 2009 as an NC programmer and mechanical engineer with over 25 years in the local Engineering industry. He has experience of multiple CADCAM software packages and has machine tool operator experience. He has worked on a variety of projects including casing, disc and shafts while at the AMRC.


Ian Ness, NC programmer

Ian joined the AMRC in 2010 as a project engineer with near 20 years’ experience in NC programming and machining. Ian has successfully delivered a number of projects within the AMRC Rotatives Team utilising his programming skills to manufacture aerospace disks and shafts to high tolerance and standard.


William Brooker, project engineer

Will joined the AMRC in 2007 as a mechanical engineering apprentice. After completing the AMRC apprenticeship scheme in 2009-2010 Will became an AMRC shop floor technician/operator where he operated and programed a number of 5-axes machine tools.

In 2013 Will joined the AMRC Rotatives group as a project engineer, and recently completed a bench marking disc project for Rolls-Royce researching material capability.

Simon Martin, project engineer

Simon joined the AMRC in 2012, after completing a BEng and a Master’s degree in Mechatronics. He primarily works on projects with Rolls-Royce, and offers support to the process monitoring group.

Rezleen Knapton, project engineer

Rezleen joined the AMRC in 2012, after completing a BEng in Aerospace Engineering. She has worked on projects with Messier-Bugatti-Dowty and Rolls-Royce and has developed NC programming and machining simulation verification skills.