Making a splash
As a leading supplier of CNC machining solutions to a wide range of industries , AAG has now added the M-Series of large-format waterjet cutting machines to its WARDJet portfolio . It includes a number of new design features that enable easier access to the material being processed , faster cutting speeds and maximum utilisation of the processing bed area to further reduce material wastage .
The M-Series is available in a choice of four different-sized models ( 2540 , 5040 , 7540 and 10040 ), with respective cutting envelopes of 2.5 x 4.0 , 5.0 x 4.0 , 7.5 x 4.0 and 10.0 x 4.0 metres . Purpose-built for the cutting of industry-standard material sheet sizes , the M-Series incorporates WARDJet ’ s proprietary MOVE intuitive software that encompasses multiple machining functions . It also features a triple-headcutting configuration that enables increased productivity levels and easier switching from single- to triple-head cutting , contingent upon the size and volume of the material being processed .
A new gantry design makes it easier to load and offload material while the machine is running , with the integrated helical rack and pinion drive system featuring a multiteeth configuration enabling cutting speeds of up to 35m / minute . This system , said AAG , also ensures more even distribution of the workload , quieter machine operation and , ultimately , a longer than normal machine life .
“ The latest Apex-60 5-axis cutting head further extends the performance of the M-Series and , in particular , its ability to handle three-dimensional work . Key benefits of the Apex-60 include the ability to cut any angle from 0 to 60 degrees , opening up many new possibilities and applications . The Apex-60 also greatly increases the speed and efficiency with which ancillary finishing can be carried out that would otherwise require additional machine shop staff and increase operating costs . With a Z-travel capability of 304.8mm , it will also accommodate processing of the thickest materials likely to be encountered and with no compromise on quality ,“ added AAG . n
:// wardjet . com
Optical angle measurement
Vision Components presented its flexible modular system for optical angle measurement in sheet metal bending applications at Blechexpo in Stuttgart . The laser sensors can be used with any controller . For easy use with DELEM controllers , they are already integrated in DELEM software and just require activation .
“ Many international press brake manufacturers use these measuring systems to check angular accuracy in metal processing ,“ commented Vision Components , which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year .
The compact VC nano3D-Z laser scanners calculate the angle onboard , without an external PC . They transmit the data to the machine control and allow for real-time contact pressure adjustment . Vision Components supplies the triangulation systems either as turnkey versions , with customer-specific housings and interfaces , or as electronics kits for individual designs .
“ Due to the functional interaction of all components – camera module with optics , laser module and electronics including a programmed FPGA module for 3D calculation – OEM customers can significantly reduce their development time and costs as well as any design risks . We launched the first smart camera for industrial series applications in 1996 ,“ added Vision Components . n
Shop floor tracker
UK ( a UK manufacturers ‘ organisation ) has collaborated with UK technology start-up , FloWide , on an innovative new tracking system for the CNC area of its Technology Hub in Aston , Birmingham ( UK ).
The system provides a ‘ GPSlike ’ indoor tracking solution for the manufacturing shop floor . It features electronic tags and anchors on the hardware , coupled with a customisable software interface . Tags are fixed on mobile items on the manufacturing shop floor : forklifts , trolleys , boxes or directly on the parts . The anchors are placed in key locations around the shop floor . This means that a digital version of the shop floor is accessible online with the real-time location of every tracked item .
Stephen Mitchell , Director of Apprentices and Technical Training , Make UK commented : “ FloWide approached us two years ago as a start-up business trying to establish itself in the UK . Whilst other similar tracking systems exist , the appeal was the ease of simplicity of installation . We were looking at opportunities to showcase and use data-rich applications as part of our Apprenticeship Delivery , so it became clear that we could help each other . The pandemic delayed implementation , but I am excited to now
Stephen Mitchell .
have this added capability in our training facility .”
Vincent Borgraeve , co-founder of FloWide , added : “ We chose to install our system at Make UK because of their pivotal role in UK manufacturing . Our short-term goal is to bring manufacturers on-site so that they can experience our solution and its benefits . Our long-term goal is to make apprentices familiar with location tracking . We strongly believe that today ’ s apprentices are digital natives who will accelerate the adoption of digital manufacturing .”
The FloWide system offers a tool finder ( to search for items on the shop floor and display their real-time location on a map ); automatic reporting to easily collate metrics ( heatmaps , bottlenecks , spaghetti diagram and utilisation rate etc .) and support for workers .
“ The benefits to manufacturers include visibility - no matter where you are working , on-site or off-site , you can log into the platform to get a real-time view of your shop floor . They also include agility and resilience ; by tracking items , manufacturers can quickly optimise new processes and claw back margins ,“ explained FloWide . n
:// flowide . net
56 | sheetmetalplus . com | ISMR November 2021