New laser cutting machine for sheet metal

Die LT8.20 bietet die meisten Optionen hinsichtlich ihrer Konfigurierbarkeit, der Be- und Entladelängen sowie ihrer technischen Lösungen. Kunden können das Layout der Maschine je nach vorhandenem Platz sowie ihren Produktionsanforderungen flexibel bestimmen. © BLM

At EuroBlech, the BLM Group presented its comprehensive software and service portfolio at two booths. With the LS7, it also presented a new solution for laser cutting of sheet metal.

But the LS7 was not the only innovation: The LT8.20, the most versatile tube laser in the Lasertube family, can be used in quite a few applications and for very different production requirements. In laser cutting of tubes and special profiles from 12 mm to 240 mm in diameter, it offers the largest working range with its 3D laser cutting head. BLM promises high productivity for the LT8.20 in both large and small series. Production changes are carried out automatically and take only a few minutes.

Regardless of the complexity of the parts to be produced and the cutting paths, the quantities and the cross sections, the system is characterized by consistent quality and performance across all processable diameters. It does not matter which metal material with which thickness and which geometries are to be cut, whether closed or open profiles are to be processed and whether 2D or 3D laser cuts are to be performed.
In addition, the LT8.20 can be equipped with various special functions of the so-called Active Tools. With them, customers achieve even better results faster – regardless of the experience of their machine operators.

Ease of use and maintenance are the results of new patented technical solutions that support operators in their daily work. The system shown at EuroBlech is equipped with the Drill&Tap device. It enables workpieces to be equipped with holes and threads in tube laser cutting without having to use special machines for this purpose. This solution guarantees the highest accuracy in the production of workpieces, as no repositioning in other machines is required. In addition, the handling of workpieces from machine to machine and any intermediate storage are eliminated.

With the LS7, BLM introduced a new solution for laser cutting of sheet metal. © BLM
With the LS7, BLM presented a new solution for laser cutting of sheet metal.

Laser cutting of sheet metal around the clock in unattended operation

The LS5 is a fully automatic, flexible and very productive high-end laser cutting machine for sheet metal, which can be extended with a module for laser cutting of tubes. The versatile machine is equipped with an IPG fiber laser source up to 12 kW and Precitec head Zoom 2.0. It can be adapted to very different production requirements and can be switched very quickly from laser cutting of sheet metal to laser cutting of tubes – and vice versa. In addition, the LS5 can be equipped with automatic loading and unloading systems for sheet metal and with storage towers.

Various Active Tools from BLM Group are available for the LS5. They are technical solutions for optimizing the laser cutting of tubes, sheet metal and three-dimensional parts of all kinds. Among other things, Active Piercing increases cutting performance on thicker materials, while Active Cool improves the cutting process on thick materials via water cooling.

Active Camera, in turn, allows optimum utilization of the materials to be processed. Machine operators simply drag and drop the parts to be cut onto the operator console screen. Then they are automatically nested in an optimal way. Finally, Active Nozzle Changing enables automatic nozzle changes and monitors their wear.

Flexible and compact laser cutting system with robot

The laser cutting system with fixed table shown is a solution for laser cutting of deep-drawn and stamped sheet metal or flat sheet metal. It is equipped with a fiber laser source with 3 kW power, a comprehensive database and innovative technical features such as Active Focus, among others, for optimizing quality and productivity in the cutting process for all types of workpieces.

The LT360 is available in different configurations: In the One Flex configuration, it is equipped with a robot for handling the workpieces – a solution for laser cutting of bent tubes or hydroformed workpieces. In the Tailored configuration, the robot picks up the parts from outside the booth, which is why the laser cutting system can be integrated into very different production environments. According to BLM, the “extremely attractive price”, the practical experience integrated into the machine – it facilitates the work of the operators – and the flexibility in production as well as layout make the LT360 a machine for entry into the world of 3D laser cutting.

The LT360 is available in various configurations. For example, it can be equipped with a robot. © BLM
The LT360 is available in various configurations. For example, it can be equipped with a robot.

Complete software suite for controlling the entire process

For its laser cutting machines, BLM Group offers native software solutions that enable customers to maximize the performance of their machines. These solutions offer comprehensive functionality for programming both on the machines and in the office.

VGP3D is the three-dimensional graphical programming software for the BLM Group’s tube and wire bending machines. According to the provider, the “easy-to-use and powerful software” is also available as an Office version. It allows customers to create any shape or geometry from tubes with just a few clicks.

Artube is the CAD/CAM software for programming the tube lasers . It allows operators to draw, edit and design individual parts or complex assemblies of tubes with any cross-section.

ArtCut is the CAM software for programming the 3D laser cutting systems. It can be used to program new parts offline and start production quickly and easily. The intuitive 3D graphics simplify the programming of three-dimensional parts of any type, automatically resolving any collisions and realistically simulating the cutting process.

Partviewer is a powerful tool for graphically simulating production programs for the Lasertube family of tube lasers. With it, both the times and the costs of production can be calculated very accurately.

Protube is BLM Group’s MES (Manufacturing Execution System) – the unified interface for simple and transparent management of part programs for the Group’s main machines. With Protube, customers prepare their work orders in the office, efficiently plan their production, send work orders to connected production sites, and monitor work progress. Combined with AI strategies and integrated with ERP systems, Protube becomes the key to intelligent Industry 4.0 applications.

Customer-oriented services with individual solutions

BLM Group offers a wide range of different services that accompany customers throughout the entire life cycle of their machines. This ensures maximum efficiency and machine availability.
These services include: Software contracts and remote technical support contracts to quickly resolve unexpected issues and assist with new production requirements. Augmented reality tools such as Active Eye are also used in remote support. They can be used to quickly communicate the necessary instructions to the machine operators.

BLManalytics provides a range of useful information from production to help maximize process efficiency and reduce maintenance costs and downtime. The data provided by production systems informs about current operating conditions – both of the overall systems and their individual components – and enables targeted intervention to maximize efficiency.

Individual maintenance programs

Customers can choose the maintenance plans that best fit their production needs. In doing so, they can plan the maintenance work so that their production is not interrupted and the service life of their machines is extended with special maintenance work: Routine maintenance and/or complementary maintenance, troubleshooting and supply of spare parts.

BLM Group is a global partner for the entire tube processing process with a very broad installation base worldwide with thousands of applications:
– BLM SPA, Cantù (CO), specializes in CNC tube bending machines, forming machines, measuring systems and related peripheral and automation solutions.
– Adige SPA, Levico Terme (TN), produces laser cutting systems and saws for tubes, solids and profiles. Deburring machines, measuring systems, washing machines and collecting containers complete the portfolio.
– Adige-Sys SPA, Levico Terme (TN), produces combination machines for laser cutting of tubes and sheet metal, laser cutting systems for large tubes, and machines for cutting and finishing solid and tube ends.