Streamlined Five-Axis Performance

April 12, 2012
GF AgieCharmilles Mikron HPM 450U handles micro to macro machining
The Mikron HPM 450U five-axis milling machine for universal, automated production. The ergonomic design includes a protective enclosure and large windows, so operators have full view of the activity. A new torque rotary/tilt table is the design highlight for GF AgieCharmille’s new milling machine, the Mikron HPM 450U, which it said allows “interference-free, five-axis machining.” It also creates efficient spindle options that support all machining applications, “from micro to macro,” according to the builder. GF AgieCharmilles specializes at designing and manufacturing laser ablation and wire EDM centers, as well as CNC and manual diesinking systems and 3- and 5-axis milling machines. The company’s business development manager Gisbert Ledvon said the Mikron HPM 450U is a powerful option for universal, automated production because it combines dynamics and stability, and adapts to various customer requirements, from drilling to more complex five-sided and simultaneous five-axis machining.

The Mikron HPM 450U is described as a “sturdy and compact” design with a large work envelope. The maximum X-Y traverse path is 23.62×17.2 in., and the Z-axis has a clearance of 17.72 in. between the table surface and spindle nose.

The machine’s rotary table speed is 140 rpm, and its tilting range is -120/+45.

The Step-Tec spindle designed for the machine is available as two options: a 12,000-rpm version with an ISO 40 taper, for conventional tooling technologies and programs; or, a 20,000-rpm version with an HSK-A63 taper for machining a wider range of materials. Both spindle options have vector control functionality for full torque in lower speed ranges; a “highly stable” ceramic hybrid spindle bearing; and spindle casing cooling that uses a controlled internal coolant system to maintain temperature consistency.

The Mikron HPM 450U has several options for tool magazines, so it will accommodate single-piece machining programs as effectively as mass production of complex workpieces. An internal tool changer integrates into the machine’s base and will store up to 60 tools. There is also an external, circular magazine that increases the storage capacity to 220 tools. Coupling the external magazine with an optional automatic pallet-changing magazine creates a flexible manufacturing cell capable of unmanned production, according to GF AgieCharmilles.

The Mikron HPM 450U’s ergonomic design includes a protective enclosure and large windows, so operators have full view of production. As a nod to its high-performance machining potential, the machine is designed for full control of chips by way of its 13.8-in. wide scrap conveyor, an edge filter positioned inside the internal coolant system to separate chips from the coolant, and protection from “chip overload” via an automatic return function to lessen the effects of any possible chip buildup.

Process control is supplied by a Heidenhain iTNC 530 digital control system, which the developer said makes the Mikron HPM 450U “user friendly.” The system has an Ethernet connection for fast CAM data delivery, dialog-controlled programming, as well as parallel programming and definable sub-programming.

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