IMS Software (Haverhill, MA) — a developer of advanced numerical control (NC) postprocessing, verification, and simulation solutions — announced IMSverify 2008, a full-function NC verification and machine simulation solution that the company says is compatible with CNC output for all major controller and machine tool vendors.
IMSverify 2008 enhances support for turning and mill-turn machine simulation, as well as optimizes collision detection and “true-surface” picking on the machined model in order to identify exact machined features.
Solids-based technology provides significant performance benefits over pixel-based solutions common in the market today, says IMS Software. Now multiple toolpaths are supported, allowing for processing of multiple CNC files from within a single session. Controller emulation offers additional user-customization of both syntax and logical errors when processing the machine code.
|"IMSverify 2008 brings dramatic ease-of-use and technological improvement to the CNC verification and simulation market." |
— Dan Wrenn, president, IMS Software
Plus, IMSverify 2008’s improved integration with IMSpost allows for execution of the postprocessor within IMSverify before the simulation is run, with complete synchronization of the APT (automatically programmed tool) and G-code in the interface.
Dan Wrenn, president of IMS Software, explains, "IMSverify 2008 brings dramatic ease-of-use and technological improvement to the CNC verification and simulation market. The powerfully simple user interface allows for easy simulation of any type of machine tool, with any brand of CNC control, and the solids-based approach for material removal — and collision detection provides the best overall performance and accuracy in the market today."
Specifically, IMSverify 2008 provides an NC verification solution for checking the postprocessed code that will run on the machine — not simply the APT or CL file verified within the CAM system. This is useful because complex machining operations and multiaxis machines increase the risk for programming errors that can result in incorrect or incomplete material removal, interference between machine components and fixtures, and ultimately can cause damage to the part and/or the machine.
Full machine simulation with clash detection further allows for accurate analysis of the complete machining environment, including all machine components, fixtures, tools, and tool holders.
With IMSverify users can verify G-code, not APT. Verification of the actual G-code that will run on the machine ensures that the part will be cut correctly. And true solids-based simulation provides for the most accurate verification of material removal, says the company.
Once you import stock and fixture information as solids from your CAM system, you can save the resulting parts from the simulation as solids, as in-process stock, or use them to compare to the original design data.
Since IMSverify is integrated with IMSpost, the company explains users gain a complete analysis tool — one in which users can simultaneously view the CAM system data (APT), G-code from the postprocessor, and the material removal — all in one intuitive interface. This ability lets you step through the process to see exactly what’s happening, and lets you determine how to precisely address any issues using breakpoints (at specific blocks, tool changes, conditions); or dynamic rotation, pan & zoom while cutting; synchronized APT, G-code, and material removal; and full multiaxis support, including RTCP (real-time control protocol) and working planes.
You can also get detailed representation of tool, tool holder, stock, clamps and fixtures; plus a solids-based material removal offers advanced visualization, including realistic shading and user control of color, transparency, and error highlighting.
And because the same postprocessor development technology used in IMSpost allows for complete customization of the reverse post in IMSverify, you gain support of every feature in your CNC control, says IMS Software.
Virtual CNC Controller
The heart of IMSverify is the virtual CNC controller in IMSpost and IMSconvert. The reverse postprocessing of the machine code provides a true picture of the tool motion. IMSverify includes support for all controller functions, including cutter compensation (2D and 3D), tool length compensation, rotary axis pivot points, controller subroutines, controller variables and expressions, canned cycles, and working planes.
Plus, the virtual controller provides support for NC controls from such manufacturers as BOSCH, FANUC, GE, Heidenhain, Siemens, Toshiba, to name a few.
The company says IMSverify is compatible with all major CAD/CAM systems, including CATIA V4/V5, Cimatron, Delcam, Edgecam, Gibbs, Houtzel APT, I-DEAS, Mastercam, Pro/ENGINEER, SURFCAM, Unigraphics, VX, WorkNC, and others.
IMSverify supports platforms including IBM Pentium computers running Windows 2000/XP or higher.
An Architecture Optimized for CNC
IMS Software calls IMSpost the world’s most advanced postprocessing software, as it transforms CAD/CAM cutter location (CLfiles) into the specific machine codes (G/M codes) required by NC machines. Further, it is said to work seamlessly with all major CAD/CAM systems, hardware platforms, and NC machines, in one interface.
IMSpost offers high-speed machining; automatic conversion of point-to-point data to NURBS format; lets you create your own interface; call your own DLLs, scripts, or programs during postprocessor execution; enables arc fitting of point to point data in any plane; CL file read ahead; advanced linearization for multi-axis machines; optimized output using linear tangency; and state-of-the-art technology using C++ and Windows GUI.
The company says IMSpost can support all classes of machines with any number of linear or rotary axes; 5X drilling cycles; automatic support of colinear axes; canned cycles, or simulated drilling cycles for machines without cycle support.
Plus it lets you use the same postprocessor for any CAM system or hardware platform; easy-to-use macro language and source level debugging tool traces output line by line, and statement by statement; it gives you access to all internal postprocessor variables and source code; and offers conversational output style support, as well as user-definable postprocessor syntax.
True solids-based simulation provides for the most accurate verification of material removal, according to IMS Software. Once you import stock and fixture information as solids from your CAM system, you can save the parts from the simulation as solids, in-process stock, or use it to compare to the original design data.
In addition to IMSverify2008, IMS Software does offer related products: IMSpost Lite — a lower-cost alternative to IMSpost Professional for modification of existing postprocessors; IMSmodel — an animated, graphical machine tool setup program that takes the guesswork out of machine setup; and IMSconvert, which converts existing CNC programs, and moves CNC files “simply and easily” from one machine format to another.
2D to 3D
Thus, IMSverify uses proven, existing components like controller emulation and machine kinematics from IMS for material removal and collision detection. From a design standpoint the goals of IMSverify are straightforward: compete squarely at the high-end of the market, with support for any machine tool, with any controller. Two, be very easy to configure, and very easy to use. And third, be a solids-based system, to leverage the best technology for collision detection, and have the best possible performance for complex machining simulation.
As an example, IMS Software recently helped one company move from the traditional 2D design and manufacturing to a complete 3D system. This involved moving the design work into SolidWorks, and the CAM programming into CAMWorks. IMS provided the postprocessors to generate the G/M code to run the machines, and IMSverify to provide full 3D simulation of the machining process before the parts are sent to the floor. Transition accomplished.
For more information, contact IMS Software (Intelligent Manufacturing Software, Inc.).
Read why DE’s editors chose IMSverify as a Pick of the Week.
Download the IMSverify product datasheet.
Go directly to IMS Software’s page focused on IMSverify.
Here is the IMSpost product datasheet.