A suite solution for productivity

A suite solution for productivity

Two new products from GE Fanuc Automation Americas Inc., Charlottesville, Va., reportedly boost shops' overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) for lean manufacturing. The company expanded its suite of productivity solutions with a Windows-based supervisory

Fanuc s i Cell OEE supervisory software performs real-time continuous data collection with web-enabled reporting, and the company reports it is the next-generation of shop-floor intelligence.

The Series 30i, Fanuc s new CNC, combines high-speed hardware with all the features, and then some, of the company s current control products to improve shops overall equipment effectiveness.


Two new products from GE Fanuc Automation Americas Inc., Charlottesville, Va., reportedly boost shops' overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) for lean manufacturing. The company expanded its suite of productivity solutions with a Windows-based supervisory software and a new CNC, both of which improve machine tool availability, performance, and quality — all variables of OEE.

Fanuc's supervisory software, called i Cell OEE, performs real-time continuous data collection with web-enabled reporting. According to Jim Spearman of Fanuc's machine tools solutions organization, "The i Cell OEE is the next-generation of shop-floor intelligence because end users can now measure exactly what's going wrong in the shop." The software provides remote diagnostics on a machine's status and alarm system, allowing maintenance personnel to dial up the machine's CNC, identify downtime codes, and solve production problems. It also backs up and restores critical data, manages CNC data, and delivers DNC high-speed part-program transfers. A simple interface transmits programs and offsets, macro variable parameters, and data collected from on-machine probing.

Fanuc's new CNC, the Series 30i, combines high-speed hardware with all the features, and then some, of the company's current Series 15 and 16 control products. It accommodates 10 paths and 40 axes, and each path is a separate part program running in the control. The system applies to advanced 5-axis machining and is well suited for multifunction/ multiprocessing machines, rotary-dial index machines, mill-turn systems, transfer-line machines, and complex lathes and mills.

For cutting speed and accuracy, the 30i sports a 0.4-msec block-processing time and a 0.4-msec interpolation time. One new software feature is nanosmoothing interpolation, which delivers the same speed and accuracy as Nurbs interpolation, but users don't have to purchase a separate Nurbs CAM processor. In addition, a conditions-select function lets programmers enter a desired accuracy, and the control adapts the machine feedrate to it.

"The 30i is the platform of the future," says Bill Griffith, a product manager at Fanuc. He explains that new maintenance features reduce machine downtime and increase machine availability, while others boost machine productivity.

"Lean manufacturing is no longer attracting just medium-to-large shops. Small ones are also incorporating the concept," comments Mark Brownhill, machine tool services manager at Fanuc.

"This is why Fanuc is gearing more products, like the i Cell OEE and Series 30i control, toward its installed base, the tangible machine tool, and OEE."

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