CNC: Job shops get new numerical control choice from Siemens

Sinumerik 828D solution delivers energy efficiency, G code free programming, better shop communications.
By Renee Robbins September 19, 2009

Siemens CNC sinumerik 828D

Siemens Drive Technologies Division’s Sinumerik 828D is available with a horizontal and vertical control panel layout, each of which is available in two CNC performance categories. Turning and milling applications get special attention.

Compact class machine tool operators, particularly those running complex turning and milling machines in the job shop segment, have a new solution to consider: Siemens Drive Technologies’ Sinumerik 828D, which combines CNC, PLC, operator panel and axis control for six CNC measurement circuits in a single robust operator panel.

Customers are looking for energy efficient machines, says Wolfgang Rubrecht, general manager of Siemens motion control business in U.S. "Investment in energy-efficient machine tools is important in an economic time like today," he says. "Siemens looks at the subject of energy efficiency as a whole: services, solutions products, systems. Our goal is greater economic efficiency throughout entire machine lifecycle-from machine planning to optimized machine (machine life cycle), from product planning and changing (product life cycle)."

Complete with intelligent kinematic transformations, an efficient tool management system and 80-bit floating point nano precision, the new control benefits from a range of performance features previously reserved for the premium CNC control segment, says Rubrecht. The Sinumerik 828D is capable of full graphical, high-level language command, and also supports ISO programming that is customary in Asia and the U.S.

"With these options, Sinumerik 828D is capable of working with every type of CNC programming method used around the world. This opens the scope to machine manufacturers for global marketing of their products with just a single CNC equipment option," he says.

Rubrecht says machine tool market has not seen so many innovations at one time in more than10 years. "Innovations are coming to CNC market," he says. "For example, job shops are used to one way engineering. The new method is two way communications." The Sinumerick CNC 828D controller includes three breakthroughs, he says:
• Simple animated interface with animated help function;
• Better shop communications, in that part programs can be posted and shared instantly; and
• Production status text messaging, so operators can be know quickly when a machine needs new blanks, is out of tolerance, or is an alarm state.

The Sinumerik 828D is suitable for single-part and small-batch, as well as large-scale serial production. Programming time can be further reduced for small-batch production with the use of the ShopMill and ShopTurn graphical workstep programming system. For large-scale serial production, high-level language programming used in conjunction with Siemens’ programGuide for technology cycle parameterization significantly reduces programming times.

The Siemens solution brings modern PC and mobile phone technology to the compact class machine tools. Extensive online help animations and a new type of input prompting system with moving picture sequences provide the basis for exceptional user convenience. USB, Compact Flash (CF) card and Ethernet ports enable high-speed data transfers onto storage media or integration of the control system into corporate networks. An "Easy Message" function provides production status monitoring via text messaging (SMS). Depending on the recipient’s profile setting, the machine will transmit information about workpiece machining status, report on the tool condition currently in use and send machine maintenance bulletins to a mobile phone, helping keep machine downtime to a minimum.

Siemens CNC sinumerik 828D vertical

New Sinumerik 828D is the latest addition to the series of machine tool controls from the Siemens Drive Technologies Division. The new control is designed for compact class machine tools and comes with a range of sophisticated CNC functions and universal CNC programming methods.

For milling or turning applications

The Sinumerik 828D can be configured for milling or turning applications. The milling version is tailored to the requirements of vertical machining centers with additional machine components, such as an A-axis for machining cylindrical workpieces or a swivel unit for machining inclined workpiece planes. Using Advanced Surface, the intelligent path guidance system, the controller can also be used for the production of high-precision molds.

The turning version is specifically designed for single-channel slant-bed lathes. Alongside powered tools for face and outer surface machining, with or without Y-axis, the system also supports a fully functional counter spindle.

Because the turning and milling versions are tailored to the relevant machine technology, the system software is substantially less complex in comparison with universal systems. System parameters are pre-defined, reducing the work involved in commissioning to a minimum for the machine manufacturer. With Easy Extend, the machine tool builder is provided a simple way of managing additional components such as indexing tables or bar loaders. Specialized CNC expertise is no longer required for mounting components in the field, representing a considerable saving in terms of service costs.

The structural design of the CNC, a unit comprised of a tough and wear-resistant die cast magnesium control panel, CNC keyboard and CNC electronic circuitry, is extremely robust and features only a minimum number of interfaces. It is maintenance-free with no fans, hard drive or backup battery. It also is available with a horizontal and vertical control panel layout, in a choice of two CNC performance versions. Despite the compact dimensions of the control, the high-resolution 10.4" color TFT display and full QWERTY keyboard are user-friendly.

The new Sinumerick CNC solutions will be released in October in Milan, Italy at the EMO 2009 show, and are available immediately in the U.S. market. At the show, the new Sinumerick CNC 828D controller will be shown on 11 different machines from around the world.

Siemens introduced its first CNC with microprocessors in 1976 and showed the Sinumerik CNC platform in Chicago at IMTS 2008. Then, the line comprised the panel-based Sinumerik 802D sl, the PC-based Sinumerik 840Di sl, and the flagship Sinumerik 840D sl in panel- and PC-based versions.

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– Edited by Renee Robbins, senior editor
Control Engineering News Desk
Machine Control, Motion Control news from Control Engineering

ONLINE extra

CNC Programming, circa 2006 : The machine tool world is working with a 50-year-old programming paradigm (based in G code) that needs an update to take advantage of interoperability capabilities to allow easier data exchange with other software.

EMO 2009 in Milan Italy October 5-10 2009 : The "machine tool world exhibition" promoted by CECIMO, European Committee for the Co-operation among Machine Tool Industries covers Metal forming and metal cutting machine tools, machines for welding, for thermal and surface treatments, robots, automation hardware and software, assembling, tools, parts, components, accessories, metrology, quality control, systems for safety and environmental protection.