In the latest technical corner with Paul Scally, Operations Manager from Tebis UK tells MTD about the Virtual Machine technology and collision checking.
Paul explains: “If we look at the workshop and the investment we put into machine tools, the last thing we want is to have a crash. So what we have to think about at this point is: machine downtime, the damaged to the machine, the damage to a component or the lost man hours and all of these can accumulate. So we need to think about how often this is happening.”
Tebis software uses Virtual Machine technology at three stages
Paul continues to clarify that most other software companies’ can only use virtual machine technology for verification. Tebis software uses Virtual technology at three stages of the process: planning, programming and verification.
The first stage is the planning process; the machine operator needs to know if a component which is planned to be machined will fit on the machine. This can be checked along with the optimum setup position for the tool tilt directions and check cutting tool lengths required. If this is not done like other system, machine limits will most likely be hit.
For programming, Tebis uses the Virtual Machine for calculation of toolpaths as it contains the machine rotational limits. It is possible to see when programming if a toolpath angle can be achieved on a 5-axis machine. Tebis will not allow creation of a toolpath which is not achievable in reality.
The last of the three stages is the process of verification, which is the toolpath checking. This prevents any collisions, not just against the cutting tool and a component, but the whole machine, its limits, shields, barriers, fixtures and any other component setup on the machine at the same time. If there is a problem, it is easy to modify and recheck during the programming process.
Tebis is also able to measure and copy the machine controller macros such as tool changes and simulate these. Tebis can also produce a postprocessor which is linked to the virtual machine, which is fully tested onsite with the customer with a sign off procedure.
Referring again to the Virtual Machine technology, Paul talks about the types of machine it can be applied to: “It could be standard vertical milling, 5-axis milling machines or it could be lathe with multiple turrets or it could be also even the robot.”
Tebis has a unique simulation which is able to handle multiple machine heads in one virtual machine and simulate change, whereas other software would need multiple virtual machines for this. “Tebis can simulate multiple heads with Virtual Machines so it is like tool change simulation.”
“The Virtual Machine Technology will pay for itself when we think about all the subjects we mentioned at a very start. We will come in and measure the machine and we will also take off all the macros from the machine, and incorporate all of this into it.”
For more details, please watch the video below: