GE Fanuc Introduces Next Generation AI Nano CNCs for High-Speed, High-Quality Machining |

GE Fanuc Introduces Next Generation AI Nano CNCs for High-Speed, High-Quality Machining

September 152004
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - September 8, 2004 - Following the introduction of the high-end Series 30i CNC in March, GE Fanuc Automation Americas, Inc., a unit of GE Infrastructure, will introduce two new CNCs in the Series 30i family – the Series 31i and 32i – at the Emerging Technology Center, IMTS 2004, September 8-15, Chicago, Booth S1000. These new controllers feature world-renowned FANUC reliability and quality as well as greatly enhanced specifications such as an increased number of simultaneously executed CNC programs, exceptional surface finishing capabilities, increased speed, and improved ease of use. The new Series 31i and 32i CNCs are designed to help manufacturers achieve unprecedented levels of accuracy, reliability and efficiency in all of their machine tool operations. As a result, businesses leveraging these new solutions can reduce rework, increase throughput and become more competitive than ever before.

“With the addition of the Series 31i and 32i CNCs, GE Fanuc can offer the best performance and value for all types of machining applications. This innovative family provides machine tool users with the high functionality and reliability that they need to improve Overall Equipment Effectiveness,” said Douglas Peterson, vice president, CNCs and lasers, GE Fanuc Automation. “We are excited to bring this powerful, feature-rich family to the marketplace and help our customers as they strive to become Lean.”

The Series 31i is an enhanced version of the current Series 18i Model B and the Series 32i is an enhanced version of the 21i Model B, boasting some of the most powerful and sophisticated CPUs and internal communication bus technology available today. An ideal replacement for Series 18 or 21 users who require enhanced CNC functionality, the Series 31i/32i can control up to 26/11 independent axes and execute up to 4/2 independent NC part programs simultaneously.

Ultra High-Speed Processing
As in the Series 30i CNC, FANUC used new technologies to improve the cutting and surface finishing capabilities of the Series 31i and 32i. The CNCs feature a new ultra high-speed processor, a higher speed internal bus with transfer performances 10 times those of current CNCs, higher speed servo current control, 16,000,000rev-1 pulse coders, as well as nanometer interpolation that is executed on all contouring moves. The new technologies have enabled eight times faster interpolation cycle times, up to 600 block look-ahead for high-accuracy contour control and 0.4 ms block processing times.

Easy to use
Additionally, the new family was designed from the ground-up to be extremely easy to use. Meeting the industry needs for easier to view displays and simplified navigation, the Series 30i family provides a new large display unit equipped with a 15-inch color LCD in addition to the conventional 7.2, 8.4, and 10.4-inch color LCDs. New vertically arranged soft keys allow more intuitive, easy-to-understand CNC operations and for operators who are familiar with personal computers, a QWERTY keyboard can also be provided. The display language can be selected from 15 languages and changed “on-the-fly” by softkey selection, making the family an ideal solution for global corporations or those machine tool professionals with a multicultural workforce. There is a choice of a slimline LCD mounted model with the CNC integrated behind the display, or a standalone model with the CNC located in a control cabinet and linked via a High Speed Serial Bus (HSSB) to the conventional display unit or to a display unit with PC functionality.

For the greatest application versatility, the new GE Fanuc Series 31i-Model A CNC offers control for up to 20 axes and six spindles. Up to four paths are supported, each path selectable from milling, turning and loader types, with up to five axes simultaneously on the Series 31i-A5. The new Series 32i-Model A CNC controls up to nine axes, two spindles and two paths – with a maximum of five axes per path.

The new family also features a significantly enhanced PMC (Programmable Machine Control). The built-in PMC CPU is a RISC-type CPU that does the sequencing for the machine control, enabling up to three ladders to run independently without any degradation in the speed of the ladder paths. As a result, the PMC can provide the flexible, high-speed sequence control – at execution speeds of 25ns/step for ladder programs – required for machine tools with peripheral equipment such as part loading, gantries, shuttles and more.

To ensure trouble-free use in a harsh environment, the Series 30i family uses a new Error Correction Code (ECC) and periodically backs-up user data in flash memory, facilitating quick restoration of system memory in the case of accidental erasure. To facilitate large programs, such as for die mold cutting, users can specify up to 8 MB of program memory, and it is possible to use additional ATA Flash or Compact FlashTM Memory.

The new family is also available as Open Systems CNCs with the Series 310i and 320i Model A – which are high-performance Open CNCs that support Windows® 2000 or XP. Other options are the Series 310is and 320is Model A, both highly reliable Open CNCs using Windows CE.NET. All of the Open System CNCs support the FANUC Open CNC API Specifications version 2 (FOCAS2) as the interface for information exchange between the CNC and a personal computer to allow a wide range of information exchange.

A wide variety of customizing tools are provided to allow machine tool builders to manufacture machine tools with value-added features to help them differentiate their machine from competition. CNC screens are made up of combinations of parts, and using screen definition files can freely change the layout of screen parts. With the expanded custom macros, axis motions and I/O signal processing can be performed in parallel while synchronization with the NC program is maintained. Many applications such as simple control of peripheral equipment are made possible through these enhancements.

Robust Features for Expanded Applications
Ideal for an expanded range of machining applications, the Series 31i and 32i CNCs support the machine tool industry’s drive toward greater productivity. For example, multi-path lathes and multi-process machines that can simultaneously do Milling, Turning, and Grinding have become popular, and the Series 30i family is a perfect fit for these applications. The high-speed processing, nano-meter interpolation, and five-axis compensation features of the 30i family are well suited for the die/mold and aerospace industries. Machining centers and the machines for dies and molds require faster and more precise machining to speed production, reduce post-machining processes, and improve quality. Compound machine tools and five-axis machines are popular solutions to decrease machining process changes at the end user for complex machining requirements. The GE Fanuc Series 30i/31i/32i controllers are industry-leading AI nano CNCs to meet these increased demands.

About GE Fanuc Automation
GE Fanuc Automation, a joint venture between GE and FANUC LTD of Japan, delivers automation hardware and software designed to help users reduce costs, increase efficiency and enhance profitability. With solutions and services catering to virtually every industrial segment, GE Fanuc Automation provides a diverse array of capabilities and products, including controllers, embedded systems, advanced software, motion control, CNCs, operator interfaces, industrial computers, and lasers. Headquartered in Charlottesville, VA, GE Fanuc Automation is a part of GE Infrastructure and combines the diverse global strengths of the GE family with the local presence customers need to design, develop and maintain their automation investments.

For more information, visit or contact: GE Fanuc Information Center, P.O. Box 8106, Charlottesville, VA 22906, Phone: (800) GE FANUC, Fax: 434-978-5205, e-mail: [email protected].

Did you Enjoy this Article?

Check out our free e-newsletters
to read more great articles.

Subscribe Now
Back to top
Posted in: