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Delcam has announced the launch of version 10 of its Powermill CAM system, which offers fast toolpath generation on multi-processor computers, increasing user productivity.

The company said Powermill 10 incorporates background-processing and multi-threading technologies, using the power of recent hardware developments to reduce calculation times and increase output.

Other enhancements include reduced memory usage when programming the largest and most complex parts, and improved ordering to give faster cycle times on the machine tool.

Delcam has also released a whitepaper on the use of multi-threading and background processing, details on recommended hardware for Powermill 10, a return-on-investment calculator, and a number of customer video testimonials – all available on the Powermill website.

The company said the main benefit of Powermill 10 is that users can prepare data in the foreground while calculating toolpaths in the background.

This eliminates the need for the user to wait for each calculation to be completed before the next operation can be prepared.

For example, it is no longer necessary to wait for a complete roughing path to be produced before work starts on programming the rest-roughing operation.

Similarly, the user can be setting the parameters needed to machine one area of a part, while toolpaths are being calculated in the background for machining a second area with a different strategy.

Productivity is also increased because the computer can continue with a series of calculations during the user’s breaks or even overnight.

Calculations can be queued by the operator and the software will automatically start the next operation as soon as each toolpath is generated.

This approach can be used with single-core equipment but the benefits are even greater with computers having two or more cores.

The multi-threading capabilities allow individual calculations to be divided between the cores in a multi-core machine.

This improves calculation times and increases user productivity, reducing any down-time where machine tools are waiting for NC data and minimising lead times.

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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