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Rapid 3-D digitizing and tool path generation for complex shapes

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3 Author(s)
K. S. Kwok ; Sandia Nat. Labs., Albuquerque, NM, USA ; C. S. Loucks ; B. J. Driessen

A system for automatic tool path generation was developed at Sandia National Laboratories for finish machining operations. The system consists of a commercially available 5-axis milling machine controlled by Sandia developed software. This system was used to remove overspray on cast turbine blades. A laser-based, structured-light sensor, mounted on a tool holder, is used to collect 3D data points around the surface of the turbine blade. Using the digitized model of the blade, a tool path is generated which will drive a 0.375" CBN grinding pin around the tip of the blade. A fuzzified digital filter was developed to properly eliminate false sensor readings caused by burrs, holes and overspray. The digital filter was found to successfully generate the correct tool path for a blade with intentionally scanned holes and defects. The fuzzified filter improved the computation efficiency by a factor of 25. For application to general parts, an adaptive scanning algorithm was developed and presented with simulation and experimental results. A right pyramid and an ellipsoid were scanned successfully with the adaptive algorithm in simulation studies. In actual experiments, a nose cone and a turbine blade were successfully scanned. A complex shaped turbine blade was successfully scanned and finish machined using these algorithms

Published in:

Robotics and Automation, 1998. Proceedings. 1998 IEEE International Conference on  (Volume:4 )

Date of Conference:

16-20 May 1998