Innovative CNC technologies for aerospace applications

17 October 2006

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Innovative CNC technologies for aerospace applicationsComplete automation for CNC applications in airplane and engine manufacture are the focus of the Siemens Automation and Drives (A&D) presentation at the Airtech 2006 exhibition in Frankfurt, Germany. The range includes CNC systems for five-axis simultaneous machining, active oscillation damping functions, and simulation tools for efficient engine production.

The aircraft industry sets the pace in the introduction of new production technologies and places very high demands on automation. At Airtec 2006, Siemens A&D is presenting CNC systems for five-axis simultaneous machining, fibre and tape laying, machining titanium, assembly, and laser and friction welding. Siemens A&D's new seven-axis transformation enables programming in workpiece co-ordinates, even with complex machine kinematics. This, in turn, enables machine concepts to be implemented for highly innovative fibre and tape laying applications that can produce complete fuselage segments on the basis of carbon fibre reinforced plastic materials.

The Sinumerik 840D orientation interpolation functions support orientation smoothing for traditional five-axis machining in higher-level CAM systems. This orientation smoothing can harmonise the smallest disparities in the data quality of CAM systems online. This enables productivity to be significantly increased and surface quality to be improved.

The Sinumerik 840D provides active oscillation damping, which contributes to meeting the aerospace industry's demands for higher machining speeds. This largely eliminates or compensates for the machine's natural frequencies and also enables considerably higher servo gain factors and path jerk values to be set on machines thus configured. This, in turn, enables the overall machining time to be substantially reduced.

Siemens A&D supplies tools for improving the surface qualities in engine production. As soon as the machining paths have been defined, the Virtual Production service can calculate the surface qualities precisely, eliminate any errors and optimise processes. This tool also calculates the exact time required to machine a component on a specific machine. This offers not only major advantages for the everyday programming of components but also in the selection of the right concept when investing in machines.

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