OPEN MIND Shows Quantum leap in CAM Software at MACH 2012
On Stand 4014 at MACH 2012, OPEN MIND Technologies will be giving a MACH debut to its new machining strategy for its award winning hyperMILL CAM package. The new 5-Axis Contour Offset Roughing and Finishing feature incorporated into hyperMILL saves an enormous amount of time when creating CAM programs for parts with curved hub surfaces.
Around 90% of all CAM strategies are traditionally based on the assumption of two main orientations: the tool axis (Z-axis) and the standard axis perpendicular to it. This is ideal for working in what is primarily a flat world.
Many parts, however, such as aero engine or pump housings, tend to be essentially curved rather than flat. Previously they too could be machined by way of 5-axis machining but the CAM process consisted of multiple jobs or program steps. Consequently, the programmer was faced with the prospect of programming a large number of individual regions and needed to control boundaries and cutter orientation. This translates into a very high overall programming effort. OPEN MIND is the first CAM manufacturer to develop a strategy specifically for 5-axis contour offset machining.
Curved surface becomes standard surface
The new machining strategy in hyperMILL simply turns the curved surface into the standard surface, allowing the tool to work at any point at an angle of 90 degrees. Taking Aeroengine parts as an example, one could say that the original plane is replaced by the rotary hub. The strategy then works as if it involved curved Z roughing or finishing. The shape-offset techniques work in simple 4-axis cylindrical situations, but also with more complex 5-axis wrapped surfaces and any generalised shaped surfaces.
This allows the NC program to be created very easily and quickly. "With sample parts that I have processed with this strategy, I have seen programming time that was previously at two to three hours shrink down to just a few minutes. In one case five hours turned into a mere five minutes. This is truly a quantum leap,"� explains Peter Brambs, a Product Manager at OPEN MIND.
The new approach is ideally suited to the types of cavities frequently encountered in mould and tool engineering, as well as for the machining of turbine housings, structural aerospace parts, tyre negative moulds and side panels and furthermore synthetic wood models, roll dies, lenses, watch and jewellery components to name but a few.
Since the tool adjusts itself perpendicularly to the hub surface, there are hardly any undercuts. Each pocket and profile can be machined very cleanly. The new feature enables the use of all types of cutting tool to be used, such as end mills, ball nosed end mills and conical milling tools. The tool angle is calculated for machining either from the hub surfaces of the model or from an externally-designed guide surface.
According to Peter Brambs: "The machining results are of extremely high quality. The tool paths are calculated on the basis of this strategy to ensure optimal results and the finished parts do not show any marks or steps."�
Moreover, this strategy can be combined with hyperMAXX, OPEN MINDs machining strategy for high-performance roughing. This module, fully integrated with hyperMILL, combines optimal milling paths and maximum material removal and thus minimises machining times significantly. For further information on this new feature, come and visit OPEN MIND at MACH 2012 on Stand 4014.