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New Precise VMC Designed for Aerospace and Power Generation Turbine Blades

Mitsui Seiki USA, Inc. has developed a specially-designed, 5-axis CNC vertical machining center for the production of turbine blades from forgings, castings, bar stock, or solid billets of titanium and stainless steel.

It will be officially introduced to the metalworking industry at IMTS. According to the company, several customers provided design criteria, including a reasonable capital cost per part, small machine footprint, the ability to rough and finish parts in competitive cycle times, and improved part accuracy and surface finish.

"In other words," says Tom Dolan, VP of Mitsui Seiki, "the total machining center package had to be smaller, faster, more accurate than what they had been using -- all at an affordable price." After about 18 months in development, the new Vertex 550-5XB machine is the result.

Key specifications include a footprint of approximately 65 sq. ft., an X, Y, Z working envelope of 550mm x 600mm x 500mm, and rapid traverse rates in all linear axes of 48m/min. A and B axes are represented in a rotating/tilting table. A-axis tilts from +45 to 90 degree angles, and the B-axis features infinite positioning points. The engineering of the rotary axes offers a new, non-traditional approach, which Dolan says enhances manual and automatic load/unload operations, such as the integration of a robot and cellular manufacturing capability. Further, Mitsui Seiki has incorporated its proven spindle configuration in the new Vertex 550-5XB, ideally suited to cut hard titanium and stainless steel grades. It also is directed by the latest and most advanced Fanuc control system.

The Vertex 550-5XB's geometric accuracy is carefully monitored in a very tight temperature-controlled factory environment. The machine features a cast bed which provides an ultra rigid machine structure. A unique "box in a box" design provides superior rigidity and stiffness. All guide way mounting surfaces are hand-scraped, achieving very high volumetric accuracies, which would be impossible to achieve on surfaces that are simply machined and /or ground. This engineering and construction concept, coupled with a newly designed machine, provides users with competitive advantages over traditional, similar purpose machines.

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Mitsui Seiki

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