Modelling and optimization of multi-axis machining process considering CNC motion limitations
Bilgen, Samet (2016) Modelling and optimization of multi-axis machining process considering CNC motion limitations. [Thesis]
The importance of multi-axis machining processes is increased over the years, especially for industries such as automotive, aerospace, dies and molds, biomedical where the parts have complex surfaces. As the demand for products is increased from these industries, it became crucial to minimize the cycle time to overcome the demand and also reduce the production costs while maintaining or enhancing the part quality. In order to achieve this the dimensional tolerances and a desired surface quality should be inside the acceptance limit while increasing productivity. The properties of the machine tool such as its own structure, axis drives, drivetrain, axis control limits and axis motor maximum capabilities can be regarded as boundary conditions of the process. The limits for the drives cannot be used at full capacity constantly as the machining process is a highly variable and flexible operation. For instance, sharp maneuvers on the tool path may not be realized at high feedrate values. In some cases, the required motion exceeds the motion capability of the axis drives, i.e. jerk, acceleration and velocity limitations. In those cases, the CNC unit slows down the motion to synchronize machine axes to keep up within geometrical limits of the required tool path. On the other hand, sometimes the commanded feed rate may not be achieved at some instances of a cycle involving short distances due to limited jerk and acceleration of the axes. These problems reduce the productivity of the operation as well as the quality of the final product. This thesis presents a new feed-rate optimization algorithm which re-adjusts the rotary axis motions to stay in the acceleration and jerk limits as well as to obtain a better surface quality for the final product in multi-axis machining. All measured velocity, acceleration and jerk limits are given to the algorithm to re-calculate the tool axis vector, such as lead and tilt angles, for minimizing the cycle time and enhancing part surface quality. As the current studies do not rely on the drive limits for choosing the tool orientation in multi-axis machining, for the first time, the algorithm represented in this thesis optimizes the tool’s lead and tilt angles at each Cutter Location (CL) point. The technique used in the study optimizes the tool orientation vector for minimizing the cycle time by observing the acceleration and jerk limits of the axis drives of the machine tool. The unnecessary motions between CL points generated by commercial software can be eliminated by the algorithm and this increases the productivity of the process. The feasibility of the algorithm and the models in this thesis is presented on an industrial part geometry where the productivity and machined surface quality improvements are demonstrated.
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