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Industrial objectives

The INTEFIX project aims to establish fixture design methodologies taking advantage of the available state of the art software and hardware tools (sensors, actuators, CAD/CAM/CAE, CNC, PLC, process simulation tools,…) combined with ad-hoc ICT tools (control algorithms, simulation tools…) to control and adapt the behaviour of the fixture, resulting in the development of intelligent fixtures. These methodologies will be based on the use of modular elements to obtain highly configurable, fast, accurate and durable fixture systems.

The project aims at the installation of intelligent fixtures and the development of assessment experiments to probe their suitability in improving machining processes.

    • Reduction of 50% in the development time of fixtures for complex components.
    • Reduction of 50% workpiece setup time and increasing the machine operator safety.
    • Development of intelligent and adaptable fixtures able to respond against undesirable forces, vibrations and displacements coming from material removal process related changes.
    • Application of adaptronic concepts to the development of fixtures and fixture elements for machining operations.
    • Application of state of the art sensors (laser, piezoelectric…), conventional actuators (Pneumatic, hydraulic…) and alternative actuators (magneto-rheological, piezoelectric actuators…).
    • Use of advanced materials (composite materials) to improve the fixture behaviour (Damping), weight and cost.
    • Development of monitoring and control strategies and algorithms to obtain a suitable and fast response of the intelligent fixture.
    • Integration of the fixture control system in the CNC or PLC to obtain the monitoring information available (machine internal signals of power, torque, axes positions…) and to modify the cutting conditions.
    • Development of a solution for the modularization and standardization of the sensing and acting modules, allowing accurate and repeatable positioning of the work piece (zero-point clamping based systems).
    • Improvement of 15% of machining performance due to the avoidance of vibrations and chatter imposed limitations.
    • Improved reliability of the machining operation due to the active control of vibrations, deflections and distortions. Leading to a reduction of rejections of 70-90%.
    • In depth knowledge about the performance of different state of the art sensors and actuators for the improvement of machining processes.
    • Adaption of state of the art simulation tools (chatter, forces, modes, deformations…) to predict the behaviour of the fixture subjected to the process loads.
    • Two alternatives for the use of the intelligent fixtures: a) Real time fixture adaption from the process monitoring data, or b) Predefined fixture adaptation from the pre-process simulation.
    • Definition of suitable and adapted CNC tool path attending to the process conditions and workpiece-fixture behaviour.
    • Integration of the INTEFIX systems for their validation in selected machining applications.