Delcam’s new robotics website highlights applications, developments and case studies on machining with industrial robots, in addition to information on the company’s own
PowerMill Robot Interface software.
We’ve featured several blog posts recently about the future possibilities presented by robotic machining, like this animated vision that won Fastems’ Challenge Competition earlier this year. Now, manufacturing software supplier Delcam has launched delcam-robotics.com, a website centered on the use of robots for machining. In addition to details on the company’s PowerMill Robot Interface software, the site highlights robot applications, case studies and current R&D projects.
One R&D initiative, the Comet project, could be of particular value for the future of robotic machining. The 30-month project, funded by the European Commission and coordinated in part by Delcam, aims to resolve the current limitations of machining with industrial robots, such as a lack of absolute positioning accuracy. Visit the site to learn more.
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Kinetic displayed its K5000 machine that performs a wealth of operations, including milling, drilling, tapping, chamfering, boring, plasma cutting, oxy fuel cutting and beveling.
Last week, I spent a day and a half at Fabtech, held at McCormick Place in Chicago. This was the first Fabtech I’ve attended. It’s an annual show that rotates from Chicago to Atlanta to Las Vegas, highlighting metal forming, fabricating, welding and finishing technology.
Three things stood out to me while at the show: automation, education and attendance. Read more and see a slideshow of highlighting some of the new equipment I saw there. Plus, learn about the fundraising campaign Fabtech partners have initiated to help victims of the severe storms and tornados that ran through Illinois on Sunday before the show.
With a broad product line and the need to meet tight delivery requirements, machine tool builder Okuma faces a challenge many of its customers would recognize. Namely: the need to manufacture responsively in an environment of high product variety and low production volumes. A new manufacturing facility in Oguchi, Japan is the company’s response to this challenge.
Automation is used extensively in this plant, particularly flexible manufacturing systems. Various lines consist of multiple machining centers united by Fastems pallet loading systems. This is true even for the largest machined part numbers. A cell 120 meters long consists of a pallet system uniting four large double-column machining centers. Read more about the company’s new “DS1” facility.
The machine tool factory in Davis produces NHX series machines as well as the DuraVertical 5100. This is a view of the machine assembly line.
DMG Mori Seiki’s Manufacturing Days 2013 (November 12-15) gave customers, press and other guests a close look at the company’s Digital Technology Laboratory (DTL) and Manufacturing Factory, plus presentations on many facets of today’s advanced manufacturing. These two facilities make up the company’s Davis, California, campus. Both buildings are quite different, but equally remarkable. They were open for tours throughout the event.
DTL provides much of the company’s engineering analysis capability and R&D to support machine tool design and manufacturing operations around the world. The building also houses a sizable showroom of machine tools and related products. At MDays, one of the highlights in this area was an interactive exhibit of CELOS, DMG Mori Seiki’s “app system” that integrates the machining process from original part idea to CNC programming to finished machining in a fully digitized, paperless flow that connects the shop floor with higher level business activities. Aerospace machines and high-performance, entry level machines were demoed here. Opened in 2009, DTL is a model of green, employee-friendly architecture and workspace.
The newer Manufacturing Factory, opened in July, 2012, covers 200,000 square feet of manufacturing space and an expansive showroom. The manufacturing space is about equally divided into production and assembly areas. The production area features three main automated machining cells. The assembly area enables HMCs and VMCs to be assembled, tested and prepared for shipment to customers in North America. In addition to machine building, the two areas provide an opportunity for the company to study and validate production concepts, often in collaboration with the R&D activities of DTL. For MDays, the factory showroom focused on machining solutions for automotive and contract machining. More than 40 technology partners, such as cutting tool suppliers, software developers, providers of workholding and other accessories added to the displays and demos there.
Three and a half days of technical presentations from a variety of manufacturing experts were offered to attendees. Particularly well received on the first day was Dr. Greg Hyatt’s review of the company’s recently announced concept for combining additive manufacturing and milling capability on one machine platform. This development underscores the strong complementary nature of additive processes and traditional machine, Dr. Hyatt said.
A personal high point for me was moderating a session about MTConnect on the second morning. The panel consisted of David Edstrom, president of the MTConnect Institute, and two representatives from shops that are prominent users of this communication protocol. Joel Neidig from ITAMCO showed a video of MTConnect-enabled applications for Google Glass, which wowed the audience. Then Shannon Sweatman from Southern Manufacturing Technologies brought things down to earth with an impressive glimpse of how MTConnect machine monitoring with DMG Mori Messenger provided vital and timely insights into shop floor effectiveness.
In DTL’s showroom, a large exhibit of the CELOS app-based software system epitomized DMG Mori Seiki’s theme of advanced, integrated manufacturing, which was the central focus of the Manufacturing Days event.
Greg Hyatt’s lecture about “a hybrid machine which adds or removes metal with equal finesse” was one of the most talked-about technical presentations at MDays.