New process control opportunities for high-value CNC machining

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New process control opportunities for high-value CNC machiningRenishaw is launching its SPRINT high-speed analogue contact scanning system for CNC machine tools, in autumn 2013. The SPRINT system incorporates a new generation of on-machine analogue scanning technology that will deliver a step-change in the benefits of process control, enabling fast and accurate form and profile data capture from both prismatic and complex 3D components.

Drawing on Renishaw’s partnerships with major businesses in key industrial sectors, the SPRINT machine tool scanning system has been designed to provide a game-changing capability for high-value CNC manufacturing processes.

For blade manufacture, the SPRINT system provides unprecedented capability for blade tip refurbishment and root blending applications. The high-speed measurement of blade sections coupled with high data integrity (even on leading and trailing edges) ensures the indication of true part condition leading to an adaptive machining capability. Automated routines, such as set-up, blade alignment, blade scanning and data collection result in significant accuracy and cycle time improvements over touch-trigger systems.

For multi-task machining applications, the SPRINT machine tool scanning system offers users completely new process control capabilities, including exceptionally repeatable diameter measurement cycles. By employing master part comparison, the SPRINT system becomes an ‘active’ control, enabling measure-cut processes to be automated for accurate diameters on large parts. This capability can result in the size of diameters being automatically controlled to within a few microns of tolerance. Measurement functionality such as part run out, machine centreline and circularity, also serves to significantly enhance the manufacturing capability of multi-tasking machine tools.

Additional functionality offered by the SPRINT system provides a rapid health-check of a CNC machine tool’s linear and rotary axes in seconds, making it possible to implement a daily machine monitoring regime with little or no operator involvement.

Each SPRINT application is enabled and supported by a software toolkit package which is dedicated to a specific industrial task, for example, the SPRINT blade toolkit. The toolkits include on-machine data analysis tools which run automatically in-cycle and provide measurement feedback to a CNC machining process.

New scanning technology

At the core of the SPRINT system is the OSP60 scanning probe. The OSP60 probe has an analogue sensor with 0.1 μm resolution in three dimensions, providing exceptional accuracy and understanding of workpiece form. The analogue sensor technology in the probe provides a continuous deflection output that is combined with machine position to derive the true location of the part surface. Measuring 1000 true 3D data points per second, the system’s superior analytical capabilities provide opportunities for workpiece measurement, inspection, adaptive machining and on-machine process control, whilst optimising machine utilisation and cycle time. This new scanning technology opens up new process control methods not previously possible with other measurement methods.

In parallel to very fast and accurate 3D measurement, the SPRINT analogue scanning system has also been designed to facilitate automated process control with no requirement for operator intervention.

Incorporating multiple patented technologies, the SPRINT system enables high-speed, high-accuracy 3D surface data collection through powerful compensation of the static and dynamic volumetric errors which are often associated with high-speed machine movement.

Renishaw describes its SPRINT system as a ground-breaking high-speed, high-accuracy tool with an exceptional range of potential applications, enabling a wide range of measurement and process control methods, reducing scrap and rework, while increasing machine capacity by reducing measurement cycle times. For further information on machine tool products, including the SPRINT high-speed analogue contact scanning system for CNC machine tools, visit

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