Optomec to showcase simultaneous five-axis metal Additive Manufacturing capabilities at Rapid
May 22, 2019
Optomec, a supplier of production-grade metal, Directed Energy Deposition (DED) systems, headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA, will demonstrate its simultaneous five-axis metal Additive Manufacturing solutions at Rapid + TCT 2019, Detroit, Michigan, USA, May 20–23. According to the company, it will display the Optomec LENS 860 Hybrid Controlled Atmosphere (CA) System, which is a hybrid DED additive and machining system.
The Optomec LENS system in five-axis configuration, with the Siemens Sinumerik 840D CNC and the LENS additive plugin, is said to be a powerful framework that empowers users with new capabilities in DED Additive Manufacturing. The simultaneous five-axis control moves a component beneath the laser deposition head, virtually making overhangs obsolete, eliminating the need for support structures, and minimising the material removal required in post processing. It is said to dramatically improve build-time and save costs. It also opens up the possibility to capture data within the kinematics of the system during processing and tie in advanced software applications, resulting in new DED AM and repair capabilities, improved quality control and almost limitless build possibilities.
Optomec states that the Siemens Sinumerik 840D comes standard on the Optomec LENS CS 600, LENS CS 800, and LENS MTS 860 systems and the new Optomec LENS additive plugin is also available as an add-on. The 840D controller reportedly ensures the highest dynamic performance and machining precision while allowing a wide range of technologies to be addressed such as hybrid machining, which includes milling and DED on the same platform.
“Optomec has once again pushed DED AM capability to new heights. By leveraging the outstanding system flexibility and openness of the Sinumerik 840D CNC, Optomec adds new capabilities to its LENS solutions. With its innovative HMI, Sinumerik bridges the gap between traditional machining and Additive Manufacturing technologies. The 840D provides maximum control performance supporting a wide range of programming approaches that can be tailored to the exact needs of the additive machine builder in ways that others simply can’t,” stated Tim Bell, Additive Manufacturing Industry Manager at Siemens.
Tom Cobbs, LENS Product Manager at Optomec, commented, “We wanted advanced capabilities in a system controller with room to grow. The Siemens 840D controller was a natural choice for us. Siemens is well recognised by machine tool users worldwide as the industry leader in cutting-edge automation technologies, and the 840D controller is a familiar and trusted HMI used extensively in industry, from aerospace and defense to power generation and automotive sectors requiring the highest dynamic performance and additive/subtractive precision.”
Cobbs added, “The 840D allows for seamless and sophisticated multi-axis printing which empowers users to make builds that simply were not possible with previous configurations. For designers, the power and versatility allow new freedoms to optimise part design in DFAM efforts.”