University of Twente Student Theses


A rapid prototyping system for the Hot-Wire cutting process

Ravenhorst, J.H. van (2008) A rapid prototyping system for the Hot-Wire cutting process.

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Abstract:This Master Project was performed at 3EL-Company bv, a company specialized in cutting EPS using a CNC hot-wire cutting (HWC) machine. The problem is the lack of preprocessing automation compared to the competing milling process. The goal for this Master Project is to develop an automated method which slices a CAD model into layers and generates the tool paths. First, a literature study is performed. Next, the requirements are assessed. Subsequently, suitable algorithms are chosen and implemented. Finally, a layered object is manufactured and measured. The layer thickness is iteratively optimized with respect to constraints involving accuracy, the fabrication process and material surface quality. Therefore the thickness of the layer depends on local model surface properties such as the curvature and orientation. In order to preserve features, direct slicing of the CAD geometry is used instead of a tessellated approximation. It is concluded that the automation yields satisfactory results for non-branching input models with relatively simple topology, although the calculation time should be reduced. Furthermore, in general, a curvature-based layer thickness estimation is worth the effort in the first iteration only. Also, intersection through edges and vertices should be avoided and the resulting curves must be checked for validity before use. The manufacturing accuracy of a layered object has a measured RMS accuracy in the order of 1 mm in the layer plane and 0.1 mm per adhesive interface. The measured tolerance is in the order of 6 mm.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ET: Engineering Technology
Subject:52 mechanical engineering
Programme:Mechanical Engineering MSc (60439)
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