JANUS Engineering and SW become technology partners

JANUS Engineering AG has concluded a cooperation agreement with Schwäbische Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH (SW).

Since the end of 2023, the two companies have been working together on technologies for the digital transformation of NC production. The first result of the cooperation: a jointly developed postprocessor for Siemens NX, which offers SW customers and SW's own application engineering department maximum performance and reliability in machine applications.

Janus/Sw cooperation

Kay-Marco Krauss, JANUS Engineering AG / Holger Kappus, SW

The contract was preceded by several years of intensive collaboration. Schwäbische Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH (SW) and JANUS Engineering, the experts in CAD / CAM / PLM, have been working together since 2019 to develop solutions for integrating Siemens NX into SW's workflows. Holger Kappus, Head of Technology Development at SW, explains: “In our collaboration with JANUS Engineering, it quickly became clear that we could leverage synergies in the partnership that would give both sides a technological advantage - and, above all, benefit our customers.” The NX software application is widely used in product development and manufacturing and offers users solutions for computer-aided design (CAD), computer-aided engineering (CAE) and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM).

This includes modeling 3D objects, performing structural analyses and programming CNC machines, including simulations of the NC code using digital twins. The creation of a digital twin makes it possible to virtually simulate and optimize complex production processes. With the cooperation agreement, the two companies are now formalizing their collaboration. The latest project is an NXOpen API for the automated comparison of tool models with a machine-specific interference body.

Postprocessor customised for SW machines

The post-processor developed in collaboration with Siemens NX integrates seamlessly: it converts the toolpath generated in NX into NC code in the relevant machine language, which is used to control the CNC machine. This NC code can in turn be simulated using NX to ensure collision-free workpiece machining. ‘These are the standard functions of every JANUS Machine kit, consisting of postprocessor and simulation,’ explains Kay-Marco Krauss, Head of Operations at JANUS Engineering. ‘For the collaboration with SW, we supplied a basic processor with precisely these functions - and then adapted it based on SW's expertise.’

The result is a digital twin that is precisely tailored to SW's machines and machine landscape: In contrast to standard post processors, it is designed for multi-spindle capability and uses SW application cycles in addition to basic functions such as 5-axis simultaneous machining. As the exact software machine data was used for its development, the output NC code is also precise and executable. Customers who use the digital twin can therefore be sure that the collision safety ensured in the simulation is also guaranteed in reality.

Maximum efficiency

‘We look for the seconds in every project for our customers,’ says Holger Kappus. "Our aim is therefore also to save time when programming the machines. With the postprocessor developed together with JANUS Engineering, we support our customers in getting the most out of their NC machines and achieving the highest machining quality at the same time." In addition, customers no longer have to do the development work that would otherwise be necessary to adapt a customised postprocessor to the typical requirements of large-scale production.

‘We have repeatedly received enquiries from customers about our expertise as a machine manufacturer and our machine data for the creation of machine kits,’ says Holger Kappus. ‘We now offer them an uncompromising OEM-quality post-processor that we use productively ourselves, which incorporates all of our expertise and which we are constantly developing further.’

SW and JANUS Engineering are currently working together to further optimise the postprocessor and equip it with the latest functionalities and programming interfaces. The two companies are also continuing to cooperate closely beyond this: ‘The postprocessor developed with JANUS Engineering originally started out as an in-house requirement. It was only during development that we realised how much potential it had for our customers,’ says Holger Kappus. ‘I am sure that similar developments in the future will lead to a joint project and ultimately to a joint product.’

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