Mechatronic expertise in the optimisation of manufacturing processes.

16.12.2010

Mechatronic expertise in production machining

 

There is a massive trend towards the optimisation of manufacturing processes in production machining. 'Mechatronics' has promising potential in many areas. However, when solutions are being developed, the special needs of machining technology must be taken into consideration. The components developed by the  KOMET GROUP for tooling systems also open up innovation possibilities in other manufacturing facilities.

 

Real innovation in the optimisation of manufacturing processes is increasingly being achieved through holistic optimisation, i.e. the interdisciplinary interaction of different components. One example of this is the integration of high-precision mechanical systems, electronics and software in  KOMET  KomTronic®  U-axis systems. With these, the  KOMET GROUP  is taking a new direction in the machining sector. Thanks to sensors and/or actuators, it is possible to achieve adjustments in the tool as well as monitoring functions for the tool or the machining process. These tooling systems are already considered to be classical representatives of 'Mechatronics'.

 

The development of the  KOMET  KomTronic®  U-axis systems  and its components reflect the specific characteristics found in production machining. In short, these characteristics start with the mostly adverse environmental conditions, amidst chips and coolants, which are naturally not easy to reconcile with the use of electronics. In this context, impenetrability and robustness have priority. Furthermore, the lack of space in the areas where machinery is operating and restrictions caused by the obstacle contours of the workpieces require designs that are as compact as possible. However, in connection with the forces which occur during machining, comparatively high torques combined with extremely large power density are also required. Moreover, the highest possible level of precision must be ensured despite high dynamics with fast speeds and movement sequences. The weight of components and the effects of centrifugal forces on the mechanics and electronics also deserve special attention. One of the biggest challenges in the development of the U-axis systems was energy and data transfer on the rotating or translational systems – a situation that is typically encountered in production machining.

 

During the course of mechatronic tooling system development that has been in progress for decades, the engineers in the Mechatronic division of  KOMET GROUP  who have basically been working as tool specialists have built up a considerable amount of interdisciplinary know-how in mechanical systems, electronics and software. Objectives such as the modularisation of tooling systems have led to the creation of individual functional components. One example of this has been the drive units, consisting of motor, gearbox, sensors and actuation electronics. Their compactness and performance density which they produce are unequalled. A striking feature is the external electronics, housed on a PCB which is smaller than a bank card. Drive systems like this are complemented by components for contactless energy and data transfer. This allows these drives to be flexibly deployed in rotating or otherwise moving production facilities in the most varied of installation situations.

 

Possible application areas can be found in areas from robotics to grippers and feeding systems, through to handling and clamping systems. For example, the clamping force in intelligent workpiece holders could be matched with component properties and machining forces. Moreover, lathe chucks could be controlled according to the sensitivity of the material. Another possible application in terms of improved quality (at least for components for contact-free energy and data transfer) is created in conjunction with measuring equipment which is used during machining.

Press contact


Trade press:

Wolfgang Klingauf

Phone:
+49 (0) 821.524693

wolfgang.klingauf@kk-pr.de
www.kk-pr.de