CNC paths optimization in laser texturing of free form surfaces

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Laser Texturing and Laser Engraving of free form surfaces are interesting alternative to EDM and micro milling in the fabrication of moulds and dies. The material removal rate of this process is typically very low and the maximum working area is limited by the maximum travel range of the galvanometric scanning head and also by the maximum deflection of the scanner or the surface curvature. As a consequence, in order to manufacture large or free form surfaces, a set of placements of the scanning head respect to the work piece must be calculated and controlled by the CNC. The number of these placements can be quite high due the small amount of material removed in each of them and the non-operative time spent to move the scanning head can be relevant compared to the overall time. In this work a method based on the solution of the Traveling Salesman Problem is proposed with the aim to optimise the number of displacements of the scanning head and generally in order to reduce the number of movement of the numerically controlled axes. The method that takes into account both the architecture and the dynamic characteristics of a 5 axis CNC system was implemented in the CALM (Computer Aided Laser Manufacturing) software used to program the laser path for part texturing and applied in industrial cases.




Orazi, L., Montanari, F., Campana, G., Tomesani, L., & Cuccolini, G. (2015). CNC paths optimization in laser texturing of free form surfaces. In Procedia CIRP (Vol. 33, pp. 440–445). Elsevier.

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