Mazak Corp. unveiled its newest machine, the Integrex i-400AM (additive manufacturing) Hybrid Multi-Tasking machine. As a fusion of additive technology (3D printing) and Mazak's advanced "Multi-Tasking" capabilities, the machine will significantly reduce part cycle times while providing high-efficiency done-in-one processing.
As a turnkey system, the Integrex i-400AM offers manufacturers an innovative alternative to conventional processing in terms of part design and machining. The technology is especially well suited for small lot production of very difficult-to-cut materials such as those used in the aerospace, energy and medical industries, said Mazak's information. With the additive capability, manufacturers can easily generate/clad near-net-shape component features then quickly complete them with high-precision finish machining operations - as well as laser mark parts if needed.
In operation, the Integrex i-400AM melts metal powder using fiber laser heat. Cladding heads (additive manufacturing nozzles) apply the molten material layer by layer, each of which solidifies as the desired shape grows. Plus, the system can join different types of metals to one another, a capability beneficial in the efficient repair of existing worn or damaged components, such as aerospace turbine blades.
Cladding heads store in the Integrex i-400AM's tool magazine, and the standard automatic tool changer loads them into the machine's milling turret. Mazak offers two types of cladding heads - high speed or high accuracy. Users select the appropriate head based on the intended process and the particular metal powder to be used.
On the Multi-Tasking machine side, the Integrex i-400AM provides full 5-axis capability to easily process prismatic parts from solid billets or castings (chucked or bar fed), round parts, highly contoured parts and now those with features built using additive technology. The machine provides -30/+210 degree B-axis movement in its milling spindle, full C-axis contouring with its turning spindle and an NC tailstock that is fully programmable.
The Integrex i-400AM was recently demonstrated at a trade show in Japan, but is not available in North America as yet, but will part of Mazak Corp.'s offerings in the future.