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ANCA Sheet Metal Solutions Appoints Nicholas Doyle As General Manager

ANCA Sheet Metal Solutions Appoints Nicholas Doyle As General Manager

Nicholas Doyle replaces Frank Holzer as the General Manager of ANCA Sheet Metal Solutions (ASM) at a time of significant growth for the company. Nicholas brings over 25 years’ experience in leadership, engineering, manufacturing, systems and quality to help strengthen the business.

“It is an exciting time to join ASM as we continue to welcome new customers and take on exciting projects. Moving to the new facility in 2019 brought a new era of professionalism in our 20-year history. As well as a new name and brand, the changes that Frank led in 2019 set up ASM with the capabilities to grow our manufacturing capacity and offer our customers even greater quality solutions,” said Nicholas Doyle, ANCA Sheet Metal Solutions General Manager.

ASM are an Australian owned business and offer a comprehensive set of services integrating cutting-edge sheet metal fabrication equipment with a workforce of qualified manufacturing engineers, technicians and welders. The skilled team, based in Thailand, are practiced in transforming a concept into a well-priced, high quality product.

“We offer a premium service with capabilities in engineering; laser cutting; waterjet cutting; folding and forming equipment; welding and painting; assembly and testing and take a lean manufacturing approach. It is a pivotal time to join ASM, as we build on our foundations to produce high quality metal fabrication products – growing our product ranges and manufacturing team,” Nicholas concluded.

Nicholas, a qualified Engineer, worked as a Mechanical Engineer at Bredo Mators in Melbourne, Australia before joining the ANCA Group as a CAD CAM Engineer. After four years working for ANCA Australia he moved to ANCA CNC Machines Thailand to manage the factory transition into a larger facility and subsequently became the Manufacturing Manager for that new Thailand facility.

Bringing over 25 years’ experience in CNC machining and automation, Nicholas will focus on cost reduction and process improvements and aims to develop a strong ASM team focused on customer satisfaction.

 

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Laser Applications In The Production Of Li-Ion Battery Cells And Packs

Laser Applications in the Production of Li-Ion Battery Cells and Packs

The laser is at the center of many solutions when it comes to the global e-mobility trend. Here are a few examples of laser cutting applications in battery cell manufacturing and assembly. Article by Trumpf.

The worldwide mobility transition is in full swing. The demand for components for electric cars and alternative drives is rising continually. In particular, high-performance components directly involved in the production of batteries, electric motors and power electronics for electromobility are at the center. More and more companies, predominately automotive suppliers, are also demanding new manufacturing solutions and technologies for alternative drive concepts, including the fuel cell.

The laser is at the center of many solutions. It connects battery cells into modules or packs. It ensures tightness and crash safety when joining battery packs and trays. It scores highly thanks to its green wavelength when copper welding contact parts without spatter. And it provides high-tensile connections in e-drives, which withstand the highly dynamic requirements.

Manufacturing Battery Cells

Battery cell manufacturing is subdivided into electrode manufacturing and cell assembly. Electrode manufacturing requires a high variety of different process steps: mixing of the slurry, coating, drying, calendaring as well as shaping, folding and stacking of the coated electrode foil. Some of them required laser technology:

  • Micro structuring of the electrode surface with ultra-short pulse lasers, for example, reduces subsequently the charging time of battery cells.
  • Drying of electrodes with VCSEL laser technology to complement conventional drying ovens by reducing the footprint and increase efficiency.
  • Cutting and shaping of coated electrode foils with ns lasers into the required format, increasing quality and productivity. Common foil materials are aluminium (cathode) with a 5-14 µm thickness as well as copper (anode) with a thickness of 9-13 µm. Very often, these foils are coated. Cutting these foils with TruFiber laser sources enables burrs of less than 5 µm and HAZ of less than 40µm. 

In the cell assembly, the steps are contacting, packaging, formation, and aging. Laser technology is used here mainly in welding applications for the internal contacting of battery cell components and the closing of prismatic cell formats:

  • Green laser wavelength for the very defined and repeatable welding of copper materials.
  • High power IR lasers combined with Trumpf’s BrightLineWeld technology for spatter free welding of aluminium or copper materials.

Both laser applications enable the highest mechanical strength and lowest electrical resistance in welding of ≤100 foils together to a stack.

On the cell level, besides these different welding applications, there are also some upcoming laser applications for surface processing like cleaning, de-coating or micro structuring with short or ultra-short pulse lasers.

Process stability is a key factor in the battery cell production. Therefore, all these laser technologies have a direct impact on the efficiency and performance of the battery.

Battery Module Assembly

After the battery cell manufacturing process, the single cells will be assembled to a battery module. The electronics and battery pack assembly have an enormous variance of different module designs. But all are based on prismatic, pouch or cylindrical cell formats.

Laser technology is used in welding of busbars, meaning the electrical contacting of single cells to a battery module, or other current carrying components. Due to the enormous number of different designs, material combinations and thicknesses, the full TRUMPF laser portfolio in terms of power, wavelength, beam quality is applied.

  • Especially for thicker aluminium busbars with welding depths mostly >2 mm and welding speeds of minimum 100 mm per second, the TruDisk laser series with patented beam shaping technology BrightLineWeld is the best choice since every single weld must be exactly the same and spatter projections must be avoided.
  • For the welding of dissimilar material combination like Al/Cu or Al/steal, we mostly recommend single mode IR lasers with a very high beam quality e.g. you can use the TruFiber Series for such applications. These lasers create a very small intermetallic phase in the welding seam, which is important for a strong joint of materials with quite different melting temperatures. By using different welding patterns, you can join Al with Cu or even the other way around. Typically, by oscillating the laser beam with a scanner optic to increase the cross-section area. For the contacting of cylindrical cells, the sheet thicknesses are usually in the range 0.2 – 0.5mm, and many times dissimilar material combinations or with coatings.

For most of the installations in battery and module manufacturing, TRUMPF lasers, optics and sensors are integrated in automated high-volume production lines, while its TruLaser Station and TruLaser Cell series are suitable in small- and medium-production volumes.

 

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LVD Launches New Large-Format Laser Cutting Machine

LVD Launches New Large-Format Laser Cutting Machine

LVD launches Taurus FL, a new large-format gantry-style fiber laser cutting machine engineered for extra-large sheet metal cutting capacity. A unique modular design, the machine size begins at a 12-meter bed length and can be expanded in increments of 2 meters to a maximum bed length of 40 meters to suit user needs. The large format allows a diverse range of parts to be cut and efficiently nested, increasing productivity and optimising material usage.

LARGE-SCALE ADVANTAGES

Taurus FL delivers the flexibility to process extra-large sheets or multiple sheets, cut a range ensure high machine dynamics of jobs in varying batch sizes, shapes and material types accommodating workpieces up to 3.3 meters wide and up to 30 mm thick.

Large parts can be processed without repositioning while multiple smaller workpieces can be positioned on the cutting table and processed in continuous fashion, without interruption. Parts can be cut on one section of the table, while loaded/offloaded on another, keeping downtime to an absolute minimum.

Taurus FL is designed for easy access. Only the gantry features an enclosure, not the complete machine. The mechanical design and drive system ensure high machine dynamics in large-format cutting.

The operator has use of two touch panels for convenient access to the control at all times.

A handheld control unit enables the operator to safely move all axes in manual mode for machine setup or to load the nozzle changer. A camera located inside the cutting zone and a monitor on the operator console allow continuous monitoring of the cutting process. The cutting zone has a detachable front panel, providing access for maintenance.

No special foundation is required for the machine.

EXPANDED MACHINE SCOPE

Taurus FL also provides the option of beveling cutting or 2.5D cutting up to 45°. The fiber laser is an ideal tool for reliably producing high-quality bevel cuts in a large-format cutting platform. The bevel cutting option offers a fast and cost-effective way to prepare material for subsequent welding operations or to create geometrical shapes.

The Taurus FL bevel head uses two direct-drive motors. The direct-drive principle uses no transmission components resulting in the highest possible accuracy and a fast responding system. As a result, consistently precise bevel cutting is assured.

The bevel head is able to cut on a horizontal surface as well as cut shapes in pre-formed parts or cut under angle within the limits of the Z-axis and +/- 45 deg.

An optional automatic nozzle changer increases machine uptime and throughput. The unit has storage for 30 nozzles in a turret-style holder positioned close to the cutting head. The nozzle changer features an integrated camera that checks nozzle alignment, size and condition. It offers automatic calibration of the capacitive height sensing and nozzle cleaning after a preset number of piercings.

Optional CADMAN-L software includes automated functions to simplify programming and offers advanced nesting, collision avoidance, On-the-Fly Piercing and Cutting, and process parameter tables to realise the full potential of Taurus FL. For bevel cutting, an optional plug-in is available for SolidWorks, Solid Edge and Inventor.

Taurus FL is offered with a 6-, 8- or 10-kW fiber laser source, which boasts an industry-leading wall-plug efficiency of more than 40 percent.

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Laser Blanking: Going From Design To Production In 6 Months

Laser Blanking: Going From Design to Production in 6 Months

Laser blanking technology is the ideal solution for the mass production of vehicles that do not have a very large production run. Here’s why. Article by Fagor Arrasate.

Achieving shortened launch times for new vehicles has been a historic challenge for the automotive industry. The need to manufacture different dies to cut pieces with blanking presses adds months to this process. In addition, the industry is producing more different models than ever before, resulting in increased downtime for production changes.

“Now, a new technology that eliminates the need for dies and replaces them with laser cutting heads makes it possible to significantly shorten the time needed to bring a vehicle from the design table to the dealers,” says Ion Mendia, Laser Blanking Product Manager at Fagor Arrasate.

Gonvarri Valencia (Spain) has the first equipment of this type in southern Europe, supplied by Fagor Arrasate. Gonvarri Valencia Manager Juan Francisco Chicote estimates that by using laser blanking technology, time can be cut in half. He said that the design to production of a new car usually takes 15 months—but with laser blanking involved, a production time of six or eight months might be possible.

The absence of a die and the flexibility of these lines “allow us to reduce delivery times, modify the dimensions of the piece during the life of the project, optimise the design of the pieces, and even combine several references in the same cut,” points out Chicote. There is even the possibility of “being able to optimize the parts in the final lifetime of the vehicles.”

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Tube Processing Made Easy

Tube Processing Made Easy

Bystronic’s laser cutting system offers manufacturing companies an easy entry into tube processing—a field of business with a bright future.

For sheet metal processing companies that want to expand their portfolio to include tube processing, to capture a wider market including automotive and construction industries right through to furniture, machine, and equipment manufacturers, Bystronic’s ByTube 130 is the optimal solution.

The automated system reduces the need for manual interventions to a minimum and thus makes the entry into the field of tube processing particularly easy. At the same time, the machine covers a very wide range of requirements: Since 85 percent of the market potential lies in the small tube segment, the ByTube 130 is geared toward the processing of tubes with diameters between 10 and 130 mm. The machine has a loading capacity of 17 kg/m. The 2D cutting head allows a large proportion of customer requests to be processed, since vertical cuts account for 90 percent of the market.

Fibre Laser Ensures Speed and Flexibility

The wide processing spectrum offers users the flexibility required to process a diverse range of orders. In addition, the ByTube 130 has the potential to replace complex and cost-intensive processing steps: A growing number of manufacturing companies are discovering laser cutting as an alternative to the two separate processes of sawing and drilling. The fibre laser performs both at once – and considerably faster. Thanks to clean cutting edges, deburring is also a thing of the past. This not only results in reduced labor costs. The costs per part are also reduced thanks to higher throughput speeds, which constitutes a huge advantage in the competition for the best price.

Available in two performance levels – 2 or 3 kilowatts – the fibre laser aggregate of the ByTube 130 excels with outstanding energy efficiency. While fibre laser technology has already established itself for the cutting of sheet metal, it is now also gaining popularity in the field of tube processing for both thin and thicker materials. The consistent cutting quality is another compelling argument in favor of fibre laser technology. And due to its shorter wavelength compared to CO2 laser technology, it has no problems with highly reflective non-ferrous metals, such as copper and brass.

Users thus benefit from three key advantages: variety of materials, efficiency, and cutting precision. Because companies that are able to process a wide variety of materials, meet tight deadlines, and deliver consistently high quality stay ahead in the competition for orders.

Software Turns Beginners Into Pros

Visualizing parts and models, creating cutting plans, and monitoring production processes: State-of-the-art sheet metal processing is not possible without high-performance software. With the new ByVision Tube user interface, Bystronic unites all the functions associated with the laser cutting of tubes on a touch screen. Entry-level users do not require extensive experience to be able to start producing with the ByTube 130. Cutting jobs are set up rapidly, and the interface is highly intuitive.

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LVD Introduces Low-Cost Laser Cutting Machine—YSD LaserONE

LVD Introduces Low-Cost Laser Cutting Machine—YSD LaserONE

LVD YSD LaserONE is a new cost-effective laser cutting machine designed to put the advantages of fiber laser technology within easy reach of sheet metal fabricators by eliminating the extras that increase machine cost and complexity. LaserONE is offered with a 2- or 4-kW laser power source in a 3000 x 1500mm table size and with optional Load-Assist automation.

Developed to address the market need for a low-cost, ultra-practical fiber laser cutting machine, LaserONE is designed, manufactured, sold and serviced by LVD. It cuts a variety of materials and thicknesses with the flexibility of fiber laser, has low operating and maintenance costs, and provides a quick return on investment.

The machine features a Precitec cutting head with NC-focus, automatic focal adjustment and crash protection, Raycus laser source, Siemens control, servo motors and drives.

The YSD LaserONE is equipped with an automatic pallet changer for fast interchanging of the shuttle tables in a cycle time of approximately 30 seconds.  An optional Load-Assist automation system offers easy loading/unloading.

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The World Of Tube Processing

The World of Tube Processing

Here’s the technology you need for optimal cutting of a broad range of tubular materials and shapes. Article by Trumpf. 

Because of their diverse shapes and materials, tubes and profiles can be used with great flexibility—from fitness equipment to furniture to agricultural machinery.

Conventional tube fabricators uses a variety of methods like sawing, lathe cutting, rotary cutting, supported shear cutting, and milling to cut tubes from long lengths into shorter pieces for variable parts and welded together for the final fabrication. No single method is optimal for cutting the broad range of tubular materials and shapes produced by this industry.

The most important areas of application:

  • Machine and device construction
  • Agricultural machines
  • Automotive industry
  • Scaffolding and platform construction
  • Sports and fitness equipment

Innovative Tube Design

The laser cutting of tubes offers you new tube design possibilities, which would not have been possible with conventional methods. Because of this, the following production steps are also reduced. Using the laser, you simplify welding fixtures and, therefore, lower the welding costs. Positioning aids with tabs and holes make component assembly easier and coding aids prevent assembly errors.

Advantages include product cost reduction, new product design, process simplification, lower organizational effort, shorter response times, simplification and optimization of parts, and reduction of downstream working steps.

Corner Connections

Simple tube designs for connections reduce your work because the parts can be optimally cut for the subsequent joining processes, even without the bevel cut.

Advantages include optimal material utilization/saving, e.g. using the common cut; simplified joining; and less work, because of optimal cutting for the subsequent joining process.

Corner Connections with Bevel Cut

Thanks to the high-quality bevel cut up to 45 deg, besides getting optimal material utilization and a reduction of work when cutting corner connections, you also get a greater part spectrum and aesthetic benefits in production and processing. Scribing of the material is often no longer necessary.

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Protective Films: A Powerful Technology Supporting Laser Cutting

Protective Films: A Powerful Technology Supporting Laser Cutting

Adapted protective films are essential for the productivity of laser cutting machines. In this article, Abdelrazak Kerbal of Novacel explains why.

Since the beginning of laser cutting technology, the metal sheets preserved by a protective film faced difficulties while being cut. With the latest generation of machines with fiber laser technology, the cutting process was even more complicated. Indeed, because of their wavelength, fiber laser machines could not safely cut the sheets laminated with a standard protective film. 

To overcome this difficulty, manufacturers had to burn or to remove  the protective films covering the sheets before proceeding with cutting. This practice tends to increase both the production time due to this double cutting pass and the wastage of material due to the sparkles or tools marks.

In addition, the thermal effects of cutting with the flow of assist gas could hinder the smooth running of the process. Indeed, during laser cutting, the film undergoes the heating on the affected zone and tends to soften. This phenomenon, coupled with the diffusion of the high-pressurized cutting gas, can generate bubbles. These bubbles represent areas where the film is no longer sticking to the sheet and are therefore points of weakness in the protection.

Sometimes, dark marks may appear around the cut edges because of the carbon black from the black/white films burnt. In some cases, users must remove non-performing protective films in order to be able to work properly with their machine. 

To overcome all these problems and to guarantee a surface protection without interfering with the smooth running of the process, Novacel has been offering protective films specifically designed for laser cutting for over 20 years now. 

In fact, Novacel’s range of protective films for laser cutting are developed in partnership with the leading laser cutting machines manufacturers and compatible with all the laser technologies currently used for cutting metals. As the main customers of the company are large metallurgy groups, Novacel products are also widely used by the big names in household appliances, construction and decoration materials, and furniture, which have to present surfaces to the final consumer free from any imperfections, scratches or soiling.  

Appropriate Protective Film to Enhance Efficiency and Quality in Laser Cutting

Adapted protective films are essential for the productivity of laser cutting machines. The choice of a protective film depends upon the laser cutting technology used, the protected materials, the sub processes and the industrial segments of application. Thickness of the film, adhesive material used and adhesion level are key parameters for successfully selecting an adapted protective film. 

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LVD Introduces Strippit PL Punch-Laser Combination Machine

LVD Introduces Strippit PL Punch-Laser Combination Machine

LVD Company nv introduces the Strippit PL Punch-Laser combination, a machine that combines the punching and forming advantages of the Strippit PX or V Series punch press with the speed and versatility of fiber laser cutting to complete multiple processes on a single machine, answering the need for flexible manufacturing. Three punch-laser models are available: the single-head style Strippit PX 1530-L and Strippit V 1530-L in thick- and thin-turret configurations.

Combined Advantages

Small batches, short lead times, increasingly complex parts drive the need for flexible manufacturing. Strippit PL offers two technologies in one machine for more versatility than single-process equipment. Strippit PL can laser cut intricate shapes and process materials up to 10 mm, efficiently punch holes up to 6.35 mm, produce forms and bends up to 90 mm in length and up to 75 mm high on the Strippit PX 1530-L.

Combination technology offers complete part processing. The punch press handles high-speed punching and forming operations. The fiber laser delivers high-quality cutting of outer contours, intricate inner contours and can be used for material etching.

The combination of technologies eliminates processes, can improve part quality, reduces production time and material handling, and lowers the cost per part in both small lot sizes and high production runs.

Technology Partner

In 1978, Strippit brought punch-laser technology to sheet metal fabrication. Today, a combination machine is more practical than ever because of advances in laser cutting and punching technology.

The solid-state fiber laser has minimal components, offers high cutting speed, and low-maintenance costs making cutting operations faster, more accurate and cost-effective. Strippit PL is offered with a 3 kW or 4 kW fiber laser source.

The Strippit PX single-head 20-ton punch press can punch, form, bend and tap, forming flanges up to 75 mm high, countersinking and scribing with top productivity. Twenty indexable tool stations hold any size tool, up to a maximum tool diameter of 90 mm.

The Strippit V thick-turret model features a versatile 48-station turret. The Strippit V thin-turret configuration has a 40-station turret. Both 30-ton machines are equipped with four programmable 88.9 mm indexable stations and are designed to handle high tonnage applications.

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LVD Showcases New Products In Virtual Technology Events

LVD Showcases New Products In Virtual Technology Events

Following the postponement of EuroBLECH 2020, LVD announces plans for a series of Virtual Technology Events and Technology Days to be held September through November 2020 to launch and showcase new laser cutting, bending and punch press products for the sheet metalworking market.

LVD Technology Events will spotlight products originally planned to debut at EuroBLECH and will offer a combination of virtual events and in-person Technology Days at its Experience Center in Gullegem, Belgium.

Both the virtual and onsite events will give attendees an in-depth look at LVD’s latest advancements. The Virtual Tech Events will provide full product demonstrations, informational sessions on various metal fabricating technology and industry trends, and offer a platform for information sharing, as you would expect at a physical trade show. Technology Days at the LVD XP Center will take place with significantly smaller groups and with increased safety measures in place.

EuroBLECH, the world’s largest sheet metalworking exhibition, has been postponed to March 2021 in light of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

“Without strong confidence that health and safety guidelines can be maintained in a large tradeshow setting such as EuroBLECH, we need new ways to connect with fabricators to help them discover new technologies,” said LVD CCO, Francis De Bie.

“As we adapt to the ‘new normal,’ it’s more important than ever to help companies build more flexible and resilient businesses.”

Dates and additional details for LVD Technology Events will be announced in early August.

 

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