Heidenhain at the forefront

Heidenhain 1025-1-tmbNumerous examples of leading-edge industrial technology were showcased on the Heidenhain stand at Southern Manufacturing 2017, including encoders, touch probes, precision motors and advanced CNC controllers. The firm demonstrated the ease with which digital data can be transferred to and from its most recent CNC system, the high-performance TNC 640, which is capable of controlling all 3-, 4-, and 5-axis machining centres including those with turning tables. Consistent with the aims of Industry 4.0, the communication functionality enables all participants in a paperless order handling environment, including design, programming, simulation and production planning staff as well as machinists on the shop floor, to communicate and exchange data seamlessly. The control uses plain language programming and has an optimised interface that the firm claims gives users unrivalled insight into system operation. Functionality for mill-turn centres includes simple program-controlled switchover between milling and turning, comprehensive canned turning cycles for frequently repeated operations such as roughing, finishing, recessing and thread cutting, constant surface speed, and tool-tip radius compensation.

The company’s latest range of touch probe systems were a key feature of the stand. Intended for aligning and measuring workpieces, tool setting and detecting cutter wear and breakage, they are ideally suited for use with Heidenhain’s TNC controls. Innovative features like mechanical collision protection, combined infrared and radio data transmission, and smart battery management ensure low cost of ownership.

Examples from Heidenhain’s extensive programme of high precision linear and rotary encoders were also highlighted. Incremental and absolute linear encoders can be supplied either sealed to resist contamination or exposed to provide higher speed and precision. Applications range from manual and CNC machine tools to semiconductor manufacturing requiring nanometre resolution. Exhibited also were contamination-resistant encoders from Heidenhain subsidiary AMO, Austria, which produces inductive tape scale linear and angle measuring systems that combine the accuracy of optical encoders with the robustness of magnetic types.

Linear and rotary encoders on show from German company, Numerik Jena, included vacuum-compatible products for positioning tasks in such sectors as electronics, medicine, thin-film deposition and analytical technology. The company is also known for miniature encoders with ultra-small dimensions and a low weight scanning head.

The full torque motor range from Swiss company ETEL, part of the Heidenhain group, completed the comprehensive selection of solutions on show. With more than 100 models to choose from, almost any requirement can be met, says Heidenhain. All ETEL motors benefit from very low cogging. The patented construction enables an exceptional peak force density in the magnetic gap, as well as unparalleled thermal efficiency, which is a significant advantage for high precision machines sensitive to thermal drift.

Find out more at www.heidenhaingb.com

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