Video: Offline Verification for Five-Axis Hybrid Manufacturing

Simulation that models the system for machining can also be applied to AM, as well as to a system combining additive and subtractive with intricate machine moves.
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​Just as machine tool builders are expanding their offerings to provide additive capability, so are software companies that support these machines. CGTech, the maker of simulation software for proving out subtractive machining programs, recently introduced additive simulation capability as well.

“It’s all about accurate models,” product manager Gene Granata said in a conversation at the recent Rapid + TCT show, where CGTech was a first-time exhibitor. Modeling each of the components of the machine and tooling allows for a simulation reliable enough to detect machine collisions offline rather than discovering them within the physical cycle.

The capability is suitable for 3D printing based on extrusion or deposition. It is particularly valuable for hybrid machine tools (additive and subtractive capability together), and in particular those that are moving in five axes. Here the additive simulation works with the established capability for simulating machining. The software can model the geometry of the part as it grows from the additive build, watching for collisions with the additive head or other machine components as the machine moves the head or part through both linear and rotary axes. Then, the simulation can also evaluate subsequent machining operations, detecting collisions such as the toolholder face rubbing the newly-built part during angled machining of a deep hole. The video here from CGTech illustrates the simulation of a hybrid cycle.