Intelligent CNC (Intelligent Computer Numerical Control) machines increase processing accuracy and efficiency while relieving operators’ physical as well as psychological workload. Additionally, these machines are capable of detecting, diagnosing and correcting all sorts of errors during production, as well as providing solutions that are optimized for production.
Comparing with non-intelligent CNC machines, intelligent CNC machines are equipped with intelligent control units in addition to motion control units. Intelligent control units utilize information from process monitoring sensor groups, expertise library, and neural network to automatically determine and correct process parameters such as cutting speed, depth and rate. Moreover, intelligent CNC machines can provide active vibration and heat compensation, safe guarding, voice indication, and remote maintenance.
A process monitoring sensor groups consist of accelerometers, RTDs (Resistance Temperature Detectors), image sensors, microphones, and position sensors. Accelerometers are used to detect vibration so that active vibration control can be achieved. RTDs detect temperature of the work-piece and cutting tools so as to realize thermal shielding in order to reduce thermal deformation. Image sensors are used for wear-out evaluation of cutting tools. Microphones collect noise generated by machines to help intelligent control unit determine vibration intensity and lubricating condition. Position sensors implement function of on-line measurement of work-pieces’ size. Certainly, intelligent CNC machines also have motion control units that include position sensors, rotary encoders, proximity switches, current sensors and pressure sensors to work with process monitoring sensor group and achieve powerful functions.
CNC machines are not only getting smarter, but also evolving towards green equipments that have higher speed and accuracy with flexibility and network communication capability.