Finding the Best Machine for SPIF Operations - a Brief Discussion
Single Point Incremental Forming (SPIF) given its easy implementation and absence of dedicated tooling is a promising manufacturing technology concerning the production of customized products, low batches or prototyping of ready-to-use parts. The range of application is wide, covering many materials and virtually unlimited geometries. Indeed, current process boundaries are more related to machine limitations than to the procedure itself. In this paper, research is carried out on the state-of-the-art of existing SPIF machine technology, in order to determine an appropriate configuration for an incremental forming equipment that overcomes such limitations. A comparative analysis is carried out to evaluate the different types of currently used equipment: adapted milling machines, serial robots and purpose built machines. Comparison parameters include among many others the maximum payload, tool path flexibility, stiffness and overall cost of the machine, based on information gathered on publications mainly from the last decade. Alternatively, other solutions used for different technological processes and assembly operations, such as precision positioning, are also taken into account. Based on the comparison of all solutions, and on the objectives of the current project carried out at the University of Aveiro, it is concluded that an equipment with parallel kinematics, driven by hydraulic servo-cylinders, could be the best choice to achieve the established goals.
J.R. Duflou, R. Clarke, M. Merklein, F. Micari, B. Shirvani and K. Kellens
S.R. Marabuto et al., "Finding the Best Machine for SPIF Operations - a Brief Discussion", Key Engineering Materials, Vol. 473, pp. 861-868, 2011