Software wizard provides graphical guidance for workpiece probe measurement

CNC machine tool operators now have an easy means of performing probe measurements of parts and tools on the shop floor

03/31/2020 – Teufen (AR), CH

A new software option from CNC specialist NUM dramatically simplifies measurement cycles during CNC machining processes.

Designed expressly for ease-of-use, the software employs graphical guidance techniques to completely dispense with the need for CNC machine operators to have any G-code programming experience. It is likely to be of especial interest to machine shops seeking to enhance their process verification or increase the throughput of precision parts.

Supplied in the form of a software wizard for use with any of NUM’s latest-generation Flexium+ CNC systems, the new option accommodates all standard probe measurement cycles for parts and tools. For maximum versatility, there are 17 different workpiece measurement routines and four probe calibration routines, plus two fixed probe calibration and cutter length pre-setting routines. The system also offers six measurement routines specifically for use on milling machines.

Each routine provides unambiguous guidance throughout its respective measurement cycle, effectively automating the process. The user is first prompted to specify the technological data for the measurement, such as the feed rate and probing speed, followed by preparatory data such as the approach and starting positions, and input and output data specific to the selected cycle.

Once a measurement cycle has been initiated by the operator, all probe positioning can be handled completely automatically by the CNC machine. The probe stylus is fully protected against collision with the part in the working environment, with any error being signalled to the CNC system and causing an immediate stop. The software includes full management of the RTCP (rotation tool centre point) function, to handle inclined coordinates inside the measurement circle.

NUM’s probe measurement guidance option brings a new level of flexibility to CNC machine tool use. Its advanced capabilities include complex tasks such as measuring the width of a rib/web and the mid-point for a paraxial probing movement, measuring the diameter and centre of a bore or a boss by means of four points, measuring the angle of an oblique surface by probing along the third axis, and vectorial measurement of a bore or boss by three points.