CAM Software Provides Efficient CAD Integration

SolidCAM’s recent CAM software release, SolidCAM2008 R12, has been integrated into the SolidWorks2008 3D CAD system. The single-window user interface and the full associativity between the CAD model and NC tool path is said to offer an efficient flow from the 3D design model to the machined part. To increase ease-of-use, a new user interface for mill operations and the capability to define user-specific default templates for all operations’ parameter settings. Furthermore, the 3D connection SpaceNavigator mouse is supported as an input device. The software also contains a framework to integrate external application programs. The company’s Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM) capability for multiple drills and complex holes has been enhanced to include 2.5D pockets. This capability provides automatic recognition and machining of through pockets as well as multi-level closed and open pockets in a solid mode. The HSM module has been enhanced to use STL files as input for the generation of high speed machining tool paths. In simultaneous five-axis milling, 12 dedicated operations are available for specific tasks, including swarf and port machining; electrode milling; and impeller and turbine-blade machining. In addition to its existing turn-mill capability, which supports as many as five axes (X, Y, Z, C and B), the software can now support a new type of turn-mill machine that provides simultaneous five-axis and multi-sided milling. They support turning features to achieve complete machining (milling and turning in a single setup) for heavy and bulky parts. The machine simulation capability also supports the solid verify mode and has been extended to turning and turn-mill applications.