Abrasive water jet cutting

The Technology

Waterjet Cutting involves pressurizing water up to  55,000 pounds per square inch.  It is then directed through a precision orifice and on through a precision nozzle.  This fine stream of water exits the nozzle at two-and -one-half times the speed of sound.  With these conditions, the water can easily cut the thinner and softer materials.  For thicker and /or harder materials, a garnet abrasive is added to the water stream as it leaves the orifice, but prior to entering the nozzles, thus-the term "abrasive waterjet".


The Controls

An Allen-Bradley 9/230 Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) monitors and controls all machine functions.  Programming the PLC determines the actual shapes to be cut on the 96" x 144" work envelope, with either a single head or dual heads activated.


The Software

A Sigma NEST True Shape CAD/CAM software System allows geometry creation by three different methods:

1.)Utilizing the integrated 2-D CAD drawing package.

2.)Parametric Shapes Library (90 shapes), user definable

3.)File importing and conversions: Auto CAD, DXF, CADL  IGES, and HPGL files.

SigmaNEST also provides automatic true shape nesting, including parts to obtain the most parts with the least amount of wasted material.


The Advantages

1.)Smooth cut edges, eliminating de-burring and /or secondary machining operation.

2.)Extremely close tolerances held on part dimensions.

3.)No heat affected zone, resultiing in no material warping or change in physical analysis.

4.)Virtually all materials can be cut.

5.)No hazardous by-products.


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