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At the Hermle Open House — set to be held in Gosheim, Germany, on 24–27 April 2013 — Delcam’s Powermill software for five-axis machining will be used to program a novel machining method for the creation of ‘fir-tree’ profiles in components for turbo machinery.

The milling approach, which has been patented by Iruba, is based on the trochoidal machining strategies in Powermill. It allows complex ‘fir-tree’ profiles to be produced on five-axis milling machines such as those manufactured by Hermle.

The use of trochoidal strategies offers benefits including high material removal rates with lower and more consistent cutting forces. This consistency ensures higher accuracy in the position and in the shape of the slots with minimal thermal effects on the surface of the profiles.

The process also reduces the number of specialist cutting tools that are required and cuts the machining time in steel alloys by between 30 and 40 per cent, compared with alternative standard milling solutions, giving a time almost equal to broaching.

Further information

  • The process is an alternative to broaching and eliminates the need to use specialist broaching equipment.
  • It was first demonstrated at the IMTS exhibition in Chicago last September.
  • Mattias Rutschinski, managing director of Iruba, said: ‘At IMTS, we presented, with Hermle and Delcam, a world premiere by milling small fir-tree geometries into a disc of IN718, a typical material for aero engine parts.’

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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