Five-Axis Machining Center with Laser Cuts CVD-Diamond Tooling

United Grinding has extended its line of Walter Ewag technologies for cutting tool production to include the Laser Line Ultra five-axis machining center that incorporates ultra-short pulse laser technology.

United Grinding has extended its line of Walter Ewag technologies for cutting tool production to include the Laser Line Ultra five-axis machining center that incorporates ultra-short pulse laser technology. The machining center is designed for efficient production of high-precision CVD-diamond tooling needed to cut challenging materials such as lightweight carbon fiber and special aluminum alloys.

The machining center uses a kinematic concept that combines a five-axis machine’s kinematic system (X, Y, Z, B and C) with superimposed three-axis laser beam guidance (U, V and W). The design enables toolmakers to laser machine a tool’s cutting edges as well as laser ablate complex step chipbreakers in one setup. The ultra-short pulse laser directly vaporizes materials without significant heat input and without comprising their integrity.

The X-, Y- and Z-axis travels measure 15.74" × 7.09" × 5.91" (400 × 180 × 150 mm), and a high-precision toolholding fixture (C axis) can be equipped with mechanical or vacuum clamping systems for plate-shaped tools. The C axis is also available with a fully automatic HSK63 interface for processing rotary tools with maximum cutting diameters ranging to 5.91" (150 mm). The 50-W high-power picosecond laser beam path is encapsulated to protect it from external influences. The laser source and relevant optical elements are integrated into the system’s water-cooling circuit for high process stability. An integrated extraction unit extracts laser vapors and flue gases into and through a filter system.

For autonomous production, an integrated six-axis articulated-arm robot with triple gripper head can automatically load the Laser Line Ultra. The robot cell is equipped with two pallets.

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