Open Architecture Design
While all machines are designed to make parts, todays manufactures are looking for ways to not just make parts but improve the entire process. The NXGEN control is a state-of-the-art Windows 7 based control providing the interconnections between controls, devices and shop floor software applications.
Historically, CNC designs were commonly proprietary to the manufacture, leaving the customer “locked-in.” Resulting in system obsolescence, lack of expansion and single source for control service and parts.
One of the key successes and popularity of the Legacy is the flexibility to upgrade the software and hardware. Even today, Legacy customers can remove the control cards and add upgraded system boards, even bringing a 1984 machine up to the latest hardware revision. From the beginning, the software was also designed to maintain a high percentage of backward compatibility and is easily updated.
Today, five years after the factory closed, service part procurement has also proven to be easily available from various part suppliers. A tremendous benefit for the customer, this competition greatly reduces the cost of maintaining the machines regardless of age.
Open – Not Closed – With the NXGEN CNC Design
We have continued the same philosophy and strive to provide even more of an Open Architecture by utilizing a true Windows based system. You are not “locked-in” to a single source for many of the control components!
For example, the system uses a standard high-speed PCI backplane for the system boards. The CPU board plugs into the backplane and can easily be removed and replaced or upgraded. As the Intel processors improve so can your system.
By using a Microsoft Windows operating system, features such as shop floor and process automation integration are achievable as the system also provides easy access to an available PCI slot, one Ethernet connection and 3 extra USB ports.
Now, a bar code reader and software package can easily be loaded into the control. The bar code reader simply connects using one of the USB ports and you are ready to begin recording process data while the machine is running.
Multi Processors Performance – In order to provide the maximum performance and reliability, all the critical motion is managed by a separate and dedicated high speed RISC processor motion control board. The Multi Processor design avoids the problems and instability systems using only a single CPU for all the system operations.
Stability Assurance Watchdogs – A dedicated system board, independent of the Windows system, continually monitors the control functions with multiple system watchdogs and hardware interlocks. In the event of a hardware or software problem the watchdogs switch off the amplifiers and put the control into an E-Stop condition.
Two Configurations are available:
1) Fadal Machine Upgrade – A drop-in plug-n-play design for Fadal VMC machines (1988-2010) using the Legacy control. The upgrade uses most of the existing components such as wiring, motors, power and feedback devices. It is designed for a either the standard Legacy AC or DC Servo type machine (using Glentek, Baldor and AMC products).
The upgrade is just a matter of hours to complete the R&R process!
Click to see Before/After upgrade pictures
2) New Machine – The NXGEN control has been designed, from the beginning, to be easily installed on new OEM machines. We have complete control packages available with features such as:
- 10 to 30 hp spindle motors and drives
- axis motors and amplifiers
- logic IO control boards
- wiring solutions
- Power/Ground/Noise Isolation – the CNC is isolated from the machine power and ground. The original Legacy CNC design suffered from using a common ground with the machine’s high power systems. With the NXGEN design, we have completely separated the high power systems. This eliminates ground loops, logic noise and greatly enhances performance and reliability.
- Minimum Resolution – .000010 (physical XY=12 millionths, Z=10 millionths)
Ten times more resolution provides better finish, improves repeatability, accuracy and servo performance
- Designed for IEC 61800-5-2 (EN 954-1) Multi Check Safety using built-in separate hardware redundancy for monitoring safety-related interaction:
- Tool Changer, Orientation Arm and Tool IN/Out are locked out whenever the spindle is rotating
- Multi Watchdog design monitors Windows OS, Motion Board and CNC software, automatically shuts down all motors and motion
- Uses Standard Legacy (GTK or Baldor) VMC brushless motors, amplifiers and Vector spindle drives
- WINDOWS 7 Embedded Standard platform using Intel Core Processors
- 60 GB Solid State hard drive
- RISC Processor Base Motion Control Board- Up to 8 axes
- 16 kHz (62 Microsecond) servo loop update (32 times faster than the Legacy CNC)
- 40 microsecond I/O processing with up to 256 I/O signals
- True ZERO following error contouring
- Encoder Failure Detection
- 3000 IPM rapid/feed rates (motor and ballscrew dependent)
- Proven Design with over 750,000 boards produced – time tested and very reliable
- Feed Forward/AI motion control (iRAMP)
- Advanced Velocity Ramp Control (iSMOOTH))
- Spline Contouring
- NURB Contouring
- USB interface at pendant
- USB, Ethernet, RS232, RS422 Interface in rear cabinet
- 5 Undedicated M-funtion Output (logic level)
- 5 Undedicated Inputs (logic level)
- XYZAB scale feedback (linear or rotary)
- Pendant – CNC 88/MP Compatible
- Same mounting hardware
- Monitor – 15” Color LCD Touchscreen High Resolution Monitor, panel mount, IP64 rated seal
- PC Style Keyboard – back light, panel mount, IP64 rated seal
- Pendant uses only 5 and 12 VDC, high voltage AC is eliminated
- USB Port – front mount, 500ma supply
- Spindle Load Meter
- MPG Handwheel
- Remote Handwheel Option – XYZAB, increment, Start, Slide Hold, Tool IN/OUT, Emergency Stop
- Pendant Switches – Memory Lock, Option Stop, Block Skip, Rapid % Select, 250% Feed and Speed override, Start, Feed Hold, Slide Hold, Tool IN/OUTand ESTOP
Control Software Features
- Original Legacy CNC Compatible Programming and Operation
- Mill, Lathe, Horizontal – up to 8 axis
- Large Axis Position or Program Display
- Solid Modeling 3D Graphic Part Verification, real time and dry-run
- Status LED‟s to show such things as Clamps ON, Spindle Locked plus many more indicators
- Mid-program Restart by block number, Tool Number or XYZ Position
- High Speed Single Step – hold down SS and the program continues Single Stepping until released
- Real Time 3D tool compensation using IJK with gouge protection
- High Speed Mode – up to 5000 XYZ blocks per second
- Programmable Safe Zones
- Pitch Error Compensation
- Table Flatness Compensation
- Fixture Compensation – Slope and Rotation
- 3D Part Rotation and Plane Tilting
- Scale Factor for the X Axis Only
- Scale Factor for the Y Axis Only
- Scale Factor for the Z Axis Only
- Familiarity – Same internal hardware; motors, amplifiers, feedback and wiring
- Isolated control power and ground – Install without need for grounding rod, greatly improves control performance and reliability
- Improved Chiller control with new max spindle temperature Estop
- Proven “Card Cage” design simplifies diagnosis and board replacement
- Simplified servo tuning
- SETP file with easy parameter modifications such as ramp control, rapid speed, ball screw pitch, encoder feedback count. Now we provide complete access to machine specific adjustments.
- Service lockout, password protected
- Analog voltage display (feed and speed pot)
- Watch windows and remote viewing abilities via internet
- Power-On Service Reminders
- Input/Output signal control, toggle with LED display feedback
- Axis Motion Control and monitoring
- Single Step Tool Changer diagnose
- Alarm History with date, time and error message. Designed so operator can email it for service review.
- Advance Diagnostic Functions – We can enable background logic trace reporting to capture all control logic for offline analysis.