Title

A flexible automated foam cutting system

Document Type

Article

Date of Original Version

1-1-1997

Abstract

Direct cutting of foam has the advantage of greater flexibility and reduced lead time over molding. This paper discusses the design and development of a flexible automated system for foam cutting that utilizes hot-wire cutters. The cutters are moved through the use of a five-axis gantry-type robot system equipped with a tool turret. A method for modeling the cut geometry, based on representing the three-dimensional cut shape as a combination of basic geometrical block shapes, is presented. This method gives the system flexibility to handle different workpiece geometries. A technique for generating the required cutting paths from the modeled geometry is also shown. The developed methodology was applied for the cutting of automotive seat cushions. The results show that the automated system significantly reduces the cutting time and produces cuts of improved quality. © 1997 Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Publication Title

International Journal of Machine Tools and Manufacture

Volume

37

Issue

4

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