Integrated linear/rotary laser machining platforms

Feb. 10, 2009
LaserTurn1 combines automated material handling with high performance direct-drive linear and rotary motion to provide a high throughput, high accuracy, cylindrical laser processing system

LaserTurn 1 from Aerotech is an integrated linear-rotary motion subsystem that combines automated material handling with high performance direct-drive linear and rotary motion to provide a high throughput, high accuracy, cylindrical laser processing system.

Automated material handling
The LaserTurn 1 is a complete motion and material handling subsystem. The system includes an automated, pneumatically actuated Type D collet closer. The collet closer has a clear aperture for product feed-through and can support tubing diameters from 0.1 mm to 7.9 mm in dry cutting applications, and up to 3 mm when configured for wet cutting operation. The collet closer is designed to minimize axial tube motion during clamping operations by keeping the collet stationary and moving the tapered mating surface during collet open/close operation.

Integral tooling platform
The LaserTurn 1 includes standard front and rear tooling platforms with M4 mounting features. The tooling platforms are bolted directly to the base of the linear stage providing a stiff, monolithic, common inertial frame of reference. Fixtures such as bushing alignment assemblies, part collection, or automated material advance functions can be attached easily.

Direct-drive technology
The LaserTurn 1 uses direct-drive noncontact motor and encoder technology for both the linear and rotary axes. Direct-drive motors exhibit significantly higher throughput and maintenance-free operation when compared to gear and screw-driven technologies. Linear and rotary encoders coupled directly to the load provide the highest level of system accuracy and repeatability over the operating lifetime of the stage.

Noncontact labyrinth cover design
The overlapping hard cover design protects the LaserTurn 1 linear stage from contact with fluids used in wet cutting processes. The sloped hard covers provide robust protection from fluid and machining byproduct ingress as well as incidental operator contact that may occur during part changeover.

Advanced control architecture
The LaserTurn 1 is available with Aerotech's advanced A3200 control system. The A3200 is a 100% digital system with high performance FireWire networked drives. The A3200's digital architecture makes it possible to optimize the current, velocity, and position servo loops for maximum performance. Advanced trajectory generation capabilities such as multi-block look-ahead minimize geometry errors in tight profiles by transparently regulating cutting speed. Aerotech's Position Synchronized Laser Firing Output (PSO) feature automatically adjusts the laser pulse frequency to match the current cutting speed to maintain optimal laser power coupling.

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