5 February 2009

The power of two heads

Two cutting heads powered by a 6kW disk laser with beam splitting can process two parts simultaneously. This, in combination with exceptional dynamics and axis speeds make the TruLaser 7040 new from Trumpf the machine for large batch production, particularly for thin sheet. It is ideal for lights out operation and for applications that require high contour precision. Typical examples are the production of seals, saw blades and metal furniture.

Trumpf has 25 years experience in the development and application of CO2 lasers and 15 years in solid state. Its machine designers are therefore able to select the best laser for the job. This top-of-the-range TruLaser is equipped with the highly energy efficient TruDisk 6001 laser that offers highly cost efficient ratio of energy consumption per meter cut. When it is not cutting the laser automatically switches to standby mode in which it uses virtually no power.

The laser delivers 3kW of laser power per head but that doesn’t mean cutting speed is halved. It is reduced only slightly with thin sheet and virtually not at all with mild steel. As 3kW is sufficient for the process the cost share of the laser, per metre cut, falls by 50% with the dual heads. As an alternative the full 6kW can also be concentrated on a single head enabling sheets up to 25mm thick to be processed. In either case the beam is guided by fibre optic cable from the resonator to the cutting head.

Another unique feature is the first-ever use of carbon fibre components in a laser cutting machine. The materials used are proven in the racing car and aerospace industries and have allowed Trumpf to develop a cross beam that is both lightweight and rigid. This improves the machine’s dynamics, increasing acceleration up to 25m/s2 and a maximum simultaneous axis speed of 304m/min.

All machine axes are equipped with frictionless linear direct drives. The acceleration in x and y is 25% greater than on this machine’s predecessor. However, values this high can only be utilised reliably when the z axis that positions the laser head height, can match the pace. For an optimal cut, the distance between the cutting nozzle and sheet cannot vary. Compensation at lightening speed must be made for even slight unevenness in the metal sheet. As a result the z axis should therefore be the most dynamic and capable of rapid offsets. On the TruLaser 7040 NEW this is certainly the case with the z axis achieving 30m/s2, guaranteeing excellent part quality.

Other TRUMPF processes that have proven their value on the TruLaser CO2 flatbed machines are now also available on this solid-state laser cutting machine. These include ControlLine for capacitative height and process regulation, FlyLine for on-the-fly insertion, the FocusLine automatic focal point adjustment and fusion cutting with nitrogen, NitroLine. The TruLaser 7040 is also fully compatible with the standard TruTops software.

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