Industry 4.0 – Metrology Integration For Smart Factory Adaptive Machining With Metrology Feedback

CappsNC metrology software allows programming offline and runs any CNC machine-tool as a CMM using measurement data to automatically improve the machining process.

To perform the complex mathematical calculations required for metrology based real-time adaptive control of CNC machining processes, powerful Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM) software needs to be directly integrated within the manufacturing system.

CappsNC, from Applied Automation Technologies, Inc., a version of CappsDMIS CMM software, has been developed to program any machining center to perform advanced measurement, metrology and GD&T calculations using the standard DMIS language. Powerful offline programming, with automatic collision avoidance and 5 axis path generation allows programming of all machine configurations including multi-axis mill-turn machines.

Offline Programming: A CAM style programming environment with realistic machine tool virtual model, simulation capabilities, automatic path generation with collision avoidance and complete geometrical fitting and tolerancing functionality are provided within the CappsNC software. Multi-View graphics with an intuitive UI programming environment makes it very simple to create measuring programs for all machine tool configurations.

Online Execution: CappsNC connects with most machine tool controllers with a real time direct interface. A G-Code program is generated from the DMIS measuring program so that the machine tool can be used just like the regular cutting programs by the operator or by an automated cycle.  Live 3D simulation is displayed in CappsNC graphics and calculations are performed as soon as data are collected. The
calculated metrology characteristics, such as best-fitting a data set to a CAD model, are used as part of the on-the-fly decision making and written back to the machine tool controller as a part of the adaptive cycle.

Machine Tool Metrology – Integrated CMM Inspection

Multi-Sensor software: CappsNC uses its own generated macros and does not require any OEM generated macros. This allows it to be probe brand independent and can work with the existing probes available on the machine. CappsNC can also work with different probe types such as:

Kinematic Probes: CappsNC can generate vector-based calibration to compensate any lobing errors of the kinematic triggering mechanisms of these probes.

Strain Gage Probes: Automatic calibration cycles are generated to calculate probe run-outs, effective radius and 5 axis head offset errors. This not only eliminates the need to independently preset the probes, but it allows to quickly check any 5 axis head misalignments of the machines.

Analog probes: Automatic contact scanning paths are generated for any geometrical or curves or surface measurements such as airfoil or gear profiles. Advanced data filters and automatic comparison to CAD models with 3D best-fit algorithms allows quick calculation of characteristics for on machine automatic decision making.

CAD Overlay Graphical Display of Measured Results

Blue Light Laser Sensors: CappsNC has advanced point cloud functionalities which are utilized with high density data collection by using a laser sensor. Laser scan programs are automatically generated by converting NC cutting programs or directly from CAD models. Automatic geometric feature extraction provides very quick data analysis for reporting or G-Code program adaptation to the actual part shape.

CappsNC allows the operation of any machining-center as a CMM with user advantages much bigger than simply performing on machine measurements by providing Pre-Process, In-Process and Post-Process benefits which include:

Pre-Process Benefits: Quick monitoring of the machine tool geometry by using an artifact • Advanced 6DOF part alignment and work offset creation • Re-posting of 5 Axis NC programs for non-rigid parts such as composites.

In-Process Benefits: Dynamic cutting tool offset and wear compensation – measures and provides feedback for actual cutting tool shapes during machining process. • Provides automated decision making based on measurement results.

Post-Process Benefits: Elimination of moving parts back and forth between machine-tool and CMM. • Create complete measurement reports including graphical displays and server data archiving and traceability. • SPC analysis and process charts.

CappsNC will be demonstrated live at IMTS Booth #135539 Hall3

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