CFEST is one of the software testbeds under development by the MT-AMRI. The purpose for developing this software is to provide an analytical cutting fluid evaluation tool. Users access the software interface over the Internet through a PC, MAC, or workstation using a browser such as MOSAIC or Netscape. The users fill out forms in the user interface to input information regarding cutting fluid type, application method, machining parameters and site specific factors and send out a request for running the software testbed. After running CFEST, the users get output in the form of Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) text and/or graphs. The output gives quantitative information regarding the cutting fluid's process performance, environmental impact, health and safety hazard scoring, and the costs for procurement as well as for treatment.
CFEST is a distributed yet integrated software testbed. It consists of process performance modules residing at MTU, a fluid disposal impacts module residing at UIUC, and a health and safety hazards module at UCB. A Data Transfer Mechanism (DTM) developed at UIUC is used to transfer data over the Internet between different modules residing at different geographical locations.
CFEST is user friendly. Although the modules reside at different geographical locations, all the modules are linked seamlessly to one another. Module interaction is transparent to the users. The users access the comprehensive software testbed through a single Universal Resource Locator (URL) address, and the output results from different modules are brought together by the program manager in a comprehensive way before presentation to the users.