The European HTEC Network

The Partnership Concept
for Inspiring CNC Education


2nd HTEC Skills Challenge takes place in Portugal


From 22 to 27 May Portugal Skills took place in Coimbra, a city located roughly between Lisbon and Porto. One of the skill competitions is milling. Twelve participants compete on four Haas machines for the right to call themselves the best young milling machinist in Portugal. 

Partly to prepare for this competition and partly to challenge themselves, 18 CNC-operators, students and people that recently graduated, took part in the 2nd HTEC Skills Challenge in the Haas Portugal showroom in Aveleda in Northern Portugal. Participants were given details and measurements of a piece,  needed to program it for machining in Mastercam and then machine it on one of the four Haas VF-2SS machines that were made available for this competition. All participants had four and half hours to complete the piece.

Most participants came from one of the IEFP or CENFIM schools that can be found all over Portugal. Both these organizations provide professional skills training to both youngsters and adults. CNC training is one of their more popular courses.


The competition was won by Tiago Duarte da Conceição from IEFP Agueda whose piece was lauded by the jury for the tolerances he had achieved. Also the second spot went to a contestant from the lauded IEFP school in Agueda.

At the end of the event, Gene Haas, founder and owner of Haas Automation, congratulated the participants on their dedication and their technical skills by conference call. At the same time Haas Portugal announced the opening of a second training center for CNC knowledge, a first one was opened last year in Aveleda, in Northern Portugal, the newest training center will be based in Lisbon.