AMFG, a UK-based developer of AM automation software, has launched a new tool that will enable manufacturers to instantly estimate how full a machine’s build envelope is without any need for nesting. The new software tool, called Holistic Build Analysis, promises to improve production scheduling efficiency and to give manufacturers better insight into the cost-effectiveness of 3D printing parts.
The new tool expands AMFG’s existing AI-powered software platform adding specifically to its auto-scheduling capabilities. According to the company, Holistic Build Analysis relies on machine learning technology to provide manufacturers with an estimate of a machine’s build capacity of a given part or series of parts. As mentioned, the new tool works almost instantaneously and does not require users to go through the nesting process.
“Our new build analysis feature offers significant time savings for manufacturers,” commented Felix Doerr, AMFG’s Head of Business Development. “Many nesting software packages offer an iterative solution, requiring users to set time limits before the nesting process is completed. This is an incredibly time-consuming process, particularly if you merely need an estimate of how full your builds are for production scheduling purposes.
“With Holistic Build Analysis, instead of waiting hours to see how full your build is, our customers can receive an accurate capacity estimation in only a matter of seconds. Our new tool is a radical alternative not only in terms of the time savings it delivers, but also because of its potential it has to change the way we optimize production scheduling for additive manufacturing.”
With AMFG’s new tool and production management system, users simply assign parts to a given build project and the machine learning algorithms get to work, almost instantly generating an estimate of the build’s fill rate. The fill rate, indicated by a simple percentage, gives manufacturers better insight into scheduling and managing builds. As AMFG specifies, users will be able to better prioritize parts for printing to meet deadlines, machine availability, etc.
Compared to the nesting process, which entails selecting parts and orienting them to optimize the build space and can take hours or days, the Holistic Build Analysis tool offers a much more efficient way to plan the production process for 3D printed parts.
“Our customers will be able to compare requested parts by volume and geometrical parameters to see where they fit best on the build,” says Doerr. “Soon, the system will even be able to suggest which parts should be produced next. Our software’s estimations are becoming ever-more accurate thanks to our algorithms. Over time, we anticipate that automated build analysis and scheduling will become an integrated part of the end-to-end manufacturing process, taking additive manufacturing another step closer to a fully automated, autonomous manufacturing future.”
Notably, AMFG says that in the first phase of the tool’s unveiling, users will be able to override the software’s estimations, which can help to contribute to and improve the machine learning algorithms accuracy.