The open house, which will run from 20-22 November 2018 at Mazak’s European Technology Centre in Worcester, revolves around the theme of manufacturing excellence and aims to give attendees a comprehensive overview of the latest machining technologies, including laser, additive manufacturing, machine connectivity and sector specialisation.
Of the 20 machines on display, the stand-out is likely to be the Integrex i-400S machining centre, part of Mazak’s flagship Integrex range, which is equipped with Mazak’s SmoothX CNC. The i-400S is ideally suited to a range of industry sectors including aerospace and automotive due to its new function, Smooth Gear Cutting software, which combines advanced Multi-Tasking machining and Mazak’s latest developments in gear manufacturing processes, including SMOOTH Gear Skiving, SMOOTH Gear Milling and SMOOTH Gear Hobbing. The software allows the operator to develop complex gear machining programs easily by entering the gear data via a user-friendly dialogue on the CNC, further reducing set-up times.
The i-400S also features Mazak’s new Smooth Spindle Analytics, which provides instant spindle vibration analysis and feedback that can be quickly accessed via the control panel on the shop floor – increasing both accuracy and productivity whilst improving machine uptime and enabling full component traceability.
Another highlight is likely to be the VCN-530C, a European-built vertical machining centre powered by a newly designed 12,000rpm milling spindle. The high-speed spindle package includes ballscrew cooling on the X-, Y- Z-axes which is complimented by Mazak’s Intelligent Thermal Shield to ensure stable machining accuracy.
The machine reduces cycle times with high-speed feed-rates up to 42m/min, outstanding acceleration and deceleration capabilities and a rapid chip-to-chip time of 2.8 seconds. The 530C is renowned for its excellent accessibility to the machining envelope and easy programming, with its use of SMOOTH Technology, specifically SmoothG CNC.
The new direct diode laser (DDL) version of Mazak’s highly successful FG machine range, one of three laser machines that will be on display, is making its UK debut at the Open House. The DDL is perfectly suited to cutting both thin and thick materials, and is also capable of cutting high reflectance material, such as copper and brass.
The new machine is equipped with a 4kW DDL resonator that can achieve a 20 per cent productivity improvement. This exceptional productivity is derived from its use of nitrogen; a reduction in piercing time, due to the use of a beam-on approach pierce, and an increase in cutting speed due to its higher light harvesting.
In addition, running costs for the DDL machine are significantly reduced in comparison to CO2, due to lower resonator and chiller unit consumption, as well as there being no need for laser gas.
The machine is also equipped with a new 3D head, developed with an independent Z-axis and tapping units. Furthermore, new laser light shielding covers have been developed to cover both the loading and unloading sides of the machine.
One of the most popular machines on show is likely to be the VARIAXIS i-300 AWC (Auto Work Changer), a compact simultaneous 5-axis automation cell developed specifically for the high-mix, low-volume production demands of market sectors such as medical and aerospace.
The compact yet highly functional automation system builds on the production expertise developed by Mazak over the years as part of its FMS (Factory Management System) offering. The machine has a gantry box structure purposefully designed to support the automation system, and comes equipped with a fully supported trunnion table that houses a high-rigidity HSK-100 work holding interface – ideal for 5-axis applications up to Ø350mm x 315mm in size.
The i-300 AWC has a 12,000rpm main spindle as standard and is fitted with a multi-tiered Auto Work Changer automation system. This allows manufacturers to operate unmanned running capability, with a capacity of up to 32-work holders as standard. To further enhance the lights-out machining capability the machine is equipped with a field expandable magazine that can hold up to 505 tools. The machine is equipped with SmoothX CNC.
In addition to state-of-the-art machines, the Open House will also boast an outstanding array of guest speakers, including Paul Shore from the National Physical Laboratory who was formerly head of the Precision Engineering Institute at Cranfield University. Mr Shore will be discussing the role of precision machining in manufacturing.
Alan Mucklow, managing director UK and Ireland sales at Yamazaki Mazak, commented: “Our November open house has become a real fixture in the precision machining calendar. This year’s event, which is focused on how machine users can develop manufacturing excellence, is very much a combined laser and machine tool open house with partners from both areas supporting the event. I am delighted to be displaying a range of outstanding technologies, alongside an array of guest speakers who will share their own experiences of using different technologies and offer a glimpse into the future of manufacturing.”