The five-day installation, performed by JETCAM Composite GmbH, took place in April 2014, covering installation of JETCAM Expert and CrossTrack, plus training for three staff. CrossTrack AMS (Advanced Manufacturing Station) was installed to provide real-time tracking and control of materials, plies, kits, orders and nests. JETCAM Expert, in conjunction with its High Performance Nesting module was configured in ‘RCP’ (remote control processing) mode to completely automate the import, ‘cleaning’, profiling and nesting of CAD files - all controlled remotely via CrossTrack.
CrossTrack AMS provides a common interface covering all composite material handling and manufacturing processes, including material delivery, transferring stock, allocating materials to the machine, scheduling nests to be cut and kitting the cut plies. It provides complete traceability, allowing a finished part to be ‘exploded’ into its separate plies and subsequent roll or rolls of source material.
Jon Andri Joerg, CEO of Connova AG, a leading manufacturer and marketer of high-end composite solutions; “Our initial goals were threefold. First, we wanted to reduce the labour-intensive costs. Second, we were looking to save on expensive CFK material costs by optimising nests and, last but not least, we also needed to urgently improve on the material selection process. With the combination of CrossTrack and JETCAM we’ve not only been able to improve material efficiency of above 12%, but also achieve a substantially better way in selecting the optimal material for a given job and getting our cutting department more in track with our overall lamination processes. The astounding fact is that this has all been achieved in an exceptionally short space of time.”
Connova plans to expand the system in the future to include material life management, allowing staff to immediately view and track the life and status of materials, plies and kits.