New Vortex Roughing Algorithm to Speed Up Machining Productivity
PASSWORD Manufacturing Engineering: How soon will users see the
new Vortex roughing algorithm in PowerMILL and Delcam’s other CAM systems? Colin Jones: We are anticipating that users will see the
new Vortex roughing algorithm in the PowerMILL 2013 R2 later this year. As soon as it is released, like other new release information, it will be posted on our learning zone so users can learn more about it by watching an instructional video at http://tinyurl.com/MfgEngMediaDelcam. Delcam Product Learning Zones teach users about all the new improvements in the software as soon as they are released
Because Vortex toolpaths have a controlled-engagement angle, tools will never be overloaded and so will achieve the maximum tool life. Shock loading caused by changes in the contact angle is eliminated, preventing chipping of the flutes. In addition, the stability of the cutting conditions gives constant edge temperatures, prolonging the life of the tool coating and removing heat damage to the surface of the part. Finally, the ability to use step-downs of up to two or even three times the tool diameter spreads the tool wear evenly over the cutting surface of the tool, again contributing to longer tool life.
“Unlike other high-speed roughing techniques that aim to maintain a constant theoretical metal-removal rate, Vortex produces toolpaths with a controlled engagement angle for the complete operation. This allows more consistent feeds and speeds to be used.”
through a series of instructional What’s New videos that can be downloaded and shared with colleagues. Vortex also will be added later in FeatureCAM and PartMaker after the release in PowerMILL. ME: What does the Vortex functionality offer users looking to improve productivity? Jones: Vortex maintains the optimum cutting conditions
for the entire toolpath that would normally be possible only for the straight-line moves. As a result, the cutting time is shorter, while cutting will be undertaken at a more consistent volume-removal rate and feed rate, protecting the machine.
ME: How does the patent-pending Vortex differ from other high-speed roughing techniques in the industry? Jones: Unlike other high-speed roughing techniques that aim to maintain a constant theoretical metal-removal rate, the Vortex strategy produces toolpaths with a controlled engage- ment angle for the complete operation. This allows more consistent feeds and speeds to be used. Varying the feeds and speeds as the cutter moves around the model increases wear on the cutter and the machine tool. ME: How will this development benefit machinists in aero- space manufacturing?