Sometimes technologies are so embedded in a product that the product simply would not be the same without the suite of advancements. So it is with AMADA’s REGIUS laser cutting system and its Laser Integration System (LIS) that drives so many of the new product’s capabilities.
Let’s look at the LIS components and what they mean to both the system and the results turned in by the operator. The system checks both the components and the actions being done by the components. We’ll cover the component checks first.
The nozzle is where the workpiece meets the laser beam, and the i-Nozzle Checker watches over this critical part of the REGIUS laser cutting system. In fact, the system takes care of this in a number of ways.
Adjacent to the cutting area is an area for diagnostics and autonomous maintenance. Under this area is a camera which i-Nozzle Checker uses to diagnose any damage or irregularity of the nozzle. Further, the beam condition is diagnosed, and is adjusted to its best position. Finally, i-Nozzle Checker can center the beam in the nozzle to ensure a good cut. If the nozzle is damaged, it is replaced. All of these actions take place automatically, and what was once a 15-minute operator-driven process is now a one-minute autonomous activity with no shutdown.
Also checking on the physical status of the system is the i-Optics Sensor. This sensor sits up in the laser head and monitors the condition of the protective glass that is between the lens and the cutting area. The condition of the protective glass is regularly checked with the sensor embedded inside the lens holder. It detects debris on the protection glass and helps you avoid any processing defects from impurities that would otherwise go unseen.
Where the action is
Monitoring components is a very practical matter, and automatic monitoring is a gain for fabricators. Monitoring actions is not only fascinating but very helpful in real-time. The i-Process Monitor analyzes the optimal wavelength to identify cutting failures. If a failure is detected, cutting is stopped. i-Nozzle Checker and the nozzle changer allow the REGIUS to identify nozzle damage, replace it, then resume operation. When piercing penetration is detected, the system automatically begins cutting rather than wait a specified amount of time. With i-Process Monitor, you know you’re good to go and you know you’re saving cycle time.
Another action-oriented autonomous feature is Automatic Collision Recovery. Let’s say the laser head hits a tip-up in the material. If a collision occurs, the laser head tilts to absorb the impact of the collision; this reduces the risk of damage to the equipment during high-speed cutting. The laser head is then brought up over the obstacle, and avoids the area with the lifted material. The nozzle is automatically replaced. Staying clear of the problem area, the system resumes cutting. It’s a fully automated feature that saves a lot of time.
And one final significant piece of the LIS lineup is the i-Camera Assist System (ICAS). This camera is inside the enclosure, on the ceiling where it can get an excellent view of the cutting pallet, the material and the movement of the laser head.
ICAS enables the operator to do interactive, drag-and-drop nesting. This system shines when setting up a job on a remnant piece. You can load the piece in (it does not need to be aligned), load an outline image of the part you’d like to cut, and drag the part image onto the AMNC 3iEx control’s touch-screen interface to a spot on the remnant. In fact, you can fill that remnant with the same or different parts, making the most of what you have left on a sheet. That gives you the ability to turn scrap into real products, very easily and quickly.
It’s easy to see why the combined technologies in the REGIUS make it a unique system, more than the sum of its parts.
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