Easier workflow in latest Radan

The latest 2020.0 release of Radan CADCAM software for the sheet-metal industry sees a further reduction in mouse clicks, along with improvements to nesting and reporting, allowing customers to see an increase in efficiency, saving both time and costs.

Radan product manager Olaf Körner says: “The number of mouse clicks needed to use automatic nesting or work on a 3D model has been reduced by around half, making workflow much easier.”
The newly developed quick nest mode in Radan 2020.0 provides a more visual interface, with limited upfront set-up for projects, while a redesigned ‘new project’ dialog allows users to “get nesting quicker”. Time benefits can also be achieved with machine-specific projects and templates.
Says Körner: “The template contains automation. For example, a fibre-laser template will switch to your correct laser machine and put in all the settings needed.”
Along with a quicker start to projects, it is also easier for users to pick up on previous projects. The newly created streamlined mode benefits from reduced mouse travel and an autosave function so that work is never lost. Ease of use ensures the software is simple to learn and allows more complex projects to be completed efficiently.
Complex projects can also be fulfilled using the newly introduced punching tool type. Punching plays an important part of the manufacturing process, and Körner says customers are getting more creative with their tooling for punch presses, to set them apart from lasers. For instance, there is now a newly created tool type in the tool editor for flattening features.
For further information www.radan.com

Panel cutters at Saint-Nazaire shipyard

Chantiers de l’Atlantique (CDA), formerly STX France, has ordered two highly automated PEMA panel-cutting stations to Saint-Nazaire shipyard.

Each of the stations consists of plasma cutting, grinding and marking functions, with special fume-extraction tables. The stations are used to cut the panel to the correct size, grind the primer away from the position of profiles, and finally to mark the position of profiles. Plasma-cutting portals for both stations are made by Pemamek’s partner, MicroStep.
Florent Camaret, investment project manager, CDA, says that thanks to Pemamek’s proven track record in welding and production automation technology, and the companies’ previous collaboration, CDA was convinced to continue co-operation with Pemamek.
“Our previous solutions needed to be updated to new and modern production technology that could provide higher capacity and better quality,” he says. “We’ve collaborated with Pemamek in other major shipyard automation projects, so we trust their expertise and technology.”
With the new PEMA panel-cutting stations, CDA will be able to significantly improve throughput times, add capacity and maintain high production quality in panel processing.
“CDA is one of the world’s leading shipyards and we’re delighted to continue our collaboration,” says Jukka Rantala, vice president, key accounts at Pemamek Ltd. “High-technology PEMA panel-cutting stations will raise CDA’s level of automation and bring a significant productivity boost to panel production.”
The panel-cutting stations, which will be ready for production by the end of 2020, will be delivered as turnkey solutions, including installation, commissioning, testing, training and production support.
For further information https://pemamek.com/

Anything but run of the mill

Paul King is a man who knows what he wants and, when it came to specifying a new fibre laser, he knew he wanted automation. “I’ve always been a believer in automation, pushing to run machines lights-out wherever possible,” he says. “I don’t understand why more laser users aren’t using it.”

Founded in 1978 and inspired by its motto, ‘From Concept to Creation,’ CSM specialises in the manufacture and supply of sheet metal parts into a wide range of commercial and retail products on a subcontract basis.
Like many, King was a CO2 laser user, but, after 18 years, was keen to investigate fibre-laser technology. However, any new solution also had to take into account the logistics of the company’s Swansey Mill layout.
“We operate from a former cotton mill, so it is hard to accommodate a large laser machine because of the type of building, with all of the columns that are in the way,” says King. “Laser machines lend themselves to big, sprawling factories, so while the easy option is often to buy another machine, the footprint doesn’t always suit the space you’re trying to exploit. So, my first thought was – what fits the space?”
Requiring a solution that would meet CSM’s footprint, technology and capacity demands, King contacted Yamazaki Mazak to see what could be offered. Mazak suggested an Optiplex Nexus 3015 Fiber 4 kW laser machine with bespoke 10-shelf automation towers.
“What really won me over was that Mazak’s technical team was very accommodating, providing constant dialogue and feedback whilst configuring the system’s layout,” says King. “They were able to make it fit my space and, more than anything, they didn’t compromise the efficiencies I was getting with existing machines.”
For further information www.mazakeu.co.uk/laser

Lasers for the mainstream market

The latest high-power fibre-laser cutting machines from Amada, the ENSIS-AJ 6 and 9 kW, are aimed at any manufacturer needing fast piercing and cutting across a range of materials.

These high-power fibre lasers offer a host of specially developed technologies designed to overcome common laser-cutting challenges. Ease-of-use, reliability and a high level of modular automation options also feature.
Core to the advanced capability of ENSIS-AJ highpower fibre lasers is Amada’s ‘Variable Beam Control’ technology, whereby the laser beam is automatically adapted to deliver stable cutting across all material types and thicknesses. Variable Beam Control can also change instantly between a high-power density beam for piercing and a high-speed, high-quality beam for cutting, thus reducing cycle time. Regarding set-up times, only a single lens is required to process thin-to-thick materials, helping to maximise machine uptime and eliminate costly operator errors.
The company’s Auto Collimation technology is a further stand-out feature of the machines as it delivers beam diameter and focus-point control for high cutting speeds and surface quality, reducing the need for secondary finishing operations. Auto Collimation also produces a wider cut kerf on thicker materials, making for easier part removal from the sheet to reduce handling time.
“By combining our proven Variable Beam Control technology, which we have used since 2014, with our Auto Collimation technology, the high-power ENSIS models give new and existing customers a significant advantage in a competitive market,” says Matt Wood, senior product manager at Amada Europe. “In fact, 25 mm mild steel can be pierced in as little as 1 second on the 9 kW version, saving significant processing time.”
For further information www.amada.co.uk

Kimla laser cutter at Barrnon

Barrnon Ltd has invested in a bespoke laser-cutting machine from MBA Engineering to work with its 6 kW fibre laser source from IPG Photonics, which features a beam splitter.


The split beam means the company can now run its robotic welder and laser-cutting machine using just one source, maximising laser utilisation, as when Barrnon is not cutting, it can weld.
Barrnon director Andy Barr says: “I’d heard about the speed and efficiency of Kimla machines and went to see them for myself at MBA Engineering. After witnessing it first hand, we decided to purchase a 1530 Powercut Linear fibre laser to share the source with our robotic welder. We needed a truly bespoke machine to be fitted around the source, and MBA Engineering was able to deliver this.
“It’s fair to say we’ve been very impressed with the machine so far, and the additional support we have received since the installation provides great peace of mind,” he adds.
MBA Engineering also transported and installed the machine, liaising directly with IPG Photonics during the process, and working with the team onsite.
MBA Engineering’s managing director Bradley McBain says: “Providing a machine without a source is a very unique project, but the flexibility of the Kimla machines enables us to provide a completely bespoke service to meet a manufacturer’s requirements. As well as delivering on this project from the beginning, we will also be offering ongoing support.”
For further information https://mba-eng.co.uk/