Delcam’s new PowerMILL Robot combines manual and CNC programming

Published on: 8th April 2015

Delcam has launched the 2015 release of its PowerMILL Robot software for the programming of robots for multi-axis machining operations.  The new release enables manual and CNC programming to be combined in a single program so providing the maximum programming flexibility.  Other enhancements include improved collision checking, automatic avoidance of wrist singularities and the ability to generate robot programs from tape files produced in other CAM software.

PowerMILL Robot also benefits from the many enhancements made in recent releases of PowerMILL, in particular the Vortex strategy for high-efficiency area clearance.  In addition, the range of robots supported by the system has been increased so that it now includes KUKA, ABB, Fanuc, Yaskawa Motoman, Stäubli, Hyundai, Comau, Kawasaki Robot, Nachi and Universal Robots equipment, in all cases eliminating any need for third-party translation software. 

The new functionality in the 2015 release allows users to duplicate in the virtual environment teach-and-learn programming of the robot for linking moves.  The model robot on the computer can be ‘jogged’ between positions where machining is to take place, in a similar way to the movement of the arm in the real environment.  The programmed linking moves can then be integrated with the cutting moves to give the complete sequence of operations.

This approach will be necessary in any cases where there are additional objects in the real world that are not included in the CAD model of the part to be machined, such as the clamps or fixture being used to hold the item.  In other cases, the user might prefer to move up and over the part, rather than moving around it, even if that is shorter.

A singularity in robot operation occurs when collinear alignment of two or more axes results in unpredictable robot motion.  Singularities must, therefore, be eliminated to maintain smooth, predictable machining.  The new release avoids automatically wrist singularities, the most common example of this type of problem.

The improved collision checking in the 2015 release allows the complete NC program to be simulated in one operation so saving considerable time when compared to the previous method of checking each toolpath individually.

Finally, the ability has been added to import existing tape files from other CAM systems.  Once imported, the toolpaths can be simulated and post-processed in PowerMILL Robot in the same way as toolpaths from PowerMILL.

PowerMILL Robot makes it as easy to program a robot for machining as it is to program a five-axis machine tool.  As a fully-associated application inside PowerMILL, users have access to all the multi-axis machining strategies within PowerMILL and can use all the system’s project management options to manage, store and retrieve data.

With PowerMILL Robot, robots can be programmed for tool-to-part applications, making them ideal for machining large parts, such as composite panels that need to be trimmed, or for part-to-tool applications, such as grinding or linishing.  The working area can be extended with linear tracks and rotary tables for even greater flexibility over the size and types of parts that can be manufactured.

To see how easy it is to use PowerMILL Robot, please go to








The new PowerMILL Robot software incorporates improved collision checking

For further information on Delcam’s PowerMILL Robot, please contact: –

Peter Dickin, Marketing Manager  Direct phone: 44 (0)121 683 1081                 


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