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At Eastec 2013, Delcam will highlight the latest developments for the programming of five-axis machines with a focus on its Powermill, FeatureCAM and Partmaker software.

Powermill software is designed for the five-axis programming of complex shapes in the toolmaking and aerospace industries, while FeatureCAM is targeted at production machining. Partmaker software is designed for equipment including turn-mill machines, bar-fed mills and Swiss-type lathes. Each software program offers extensive five-axis capabilities.

Five-axis machining can boost productivity by increasing efficiency, improving quality and shortening delivery times. Five-axis machines enable shorter cutters to be used and can machine complex shapes in a single setup.

Eastec 2013 will be held in Massachusetts on 14–16 May.

Five-axis capabilities

Powermill

  • There is an increased number of options for tool-axis definition
  • For raster toolpaths, the lead and lean angles can be defined relative to a contact normal
  • Better control is possible for the tool-axis definition when using the To or From a Point Line or Curve strategies

FeatureCAM

  • Five-axis strategies include flowline machining between two curves, pencil machining and corner re-machining; these allow a better surface finish to be achieved, as well as ensuring access to more areas within the part in a single setup
  • Look-ahead capability removes any sudden tool-axis changes during automatic collision avoidance and ensures that a smooth transition takes place
  • Ability to smooth the Azimuth and Elevation axes independently removes excessive five-axis movement
  • These options stabilise the rotary-axis movement by maintaining a fixed tool axis as far as possible, replacing constant five-axis movement with a series of three two-axis segments having full five-axis transitions between them

Partmaker

  • Improved simultaneous milling strategies for both four- and five-axis machining is achieved using a new module — ASM-MX (Advanced Surface Machining – Multi-Axis)
  • ASM-MX can be added across the entire Partmaker CAM suite, including the Partmaker Mill, Turn-Mill and SwissCAM modules; it enables Partmaker to provide the user with complete tool-axis control for all five-axis simultaneous machining strategies
  • The ASM-MX module features ‘spine finishing’, which can be used in either four- or five-axis simultaneous operations and is suitable for machining parts with complex curves, such as angulated abutments in the dental implant industry

Delcam supplies software and services that help manufacturing companies to maximise their profitability by increasing productivity, improving quality and reducing lead times. The company is the world's largest specialist supplier of computer-aided machining software, with its PowerMILL, FeatureCAM, Partmaker and ArtCAM programs making up the most comprehensive range of CAM systems from any developer.

This broad selection allows Delcam to offer a CAM system capable of machining virtually any product, in any material on any type of equipment. Delcam also develops product design, tooling design and quality control programs. The unique Tribrid Modelling approach to design incorporates solid modelling, surface modelling and triangle modelling in a single program, enabling complete design and reverse engineering projects to be undertaken without transferring data between software.

Delcam's Powerinspect offers fast, reliable comparison of parts, prototypes and tooling against CAD data on all types of inspection equipment and even on machine tools. This versatility has made it the world's leading hardware-independent inspection software. Related programs are available for checking machine tool set-up and part location. Delcam software is used in over 80 countries worldwide by around 40,000 organisations, from large multi-nationals to small sub-contractors, in industries including aerospace, automotive, dental, engineering, footwear, medical and toolmaking.

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