“Our innovative efforts focus on two areas: facilitating unattended work and achieving major improvements in accuracy”
Eneko Ariznabarreta, Technical Director at JUARISTI
Eneko Ariznabarreta has been in charge of the technical management at JUARISTI for 8 years now. Over the years, he has shaped the company’s new strategy on innovation and led new developments in machines and technologies. To this end, he has been responsible for studying market trends and demands in detail and for bolstering the means and equipment necessary to respond to them. The result of this process has been a clear innovative strategy with very specific axes: improving the autonomy of solutions and increasing accuracy.
What are the latest developments in JUARISTI’s technical department?
The design and development of new upgrades and components is a continuous process at JUARISTI, as all the machine’s structural elements are developed by us. The last year has been particularly busy and we have presented major innovations in many areas. If I had to pick one, I would highlight the next-generation universal heads, which offer greater dynamics, enable 5-axis work, and are optimised for multifunctional work including turning and grinding. We did all this without forgetting that one of the main distinguishing features of JUARISTI is its robustness, and the new generation heads also represent a significant improvement in this field.
On the other hand, we are making a major effort in the development of different software to improve machine precision over time, and to facilitate unattended, fully reliable machining.
What aspects would you say differentiate JUARISTI machines?
The main features of JUARISTI machines are precision and sturdiness. Our main objective is for our customers to have high productivity with maximum accuracy. But beyond the machines, the main value of JUARISTI, I believe, lies in the flexibility we provide in listening to the customer, adapting and developing the best solution for their specific needs.
One of JUARISTI’s distinctive features is the high-tech value of its heads. What are the benefits of the most recent ACD7 and ACD8 developments?
In this new generation, we have tried to bring together the best of our entire range of heads and concentrate them into two unique models. Maintaining the ruggedness and cutting capacity of our universal heads, we have improved the dynamics to reduce downtime, and have included the option to work on 5 real axes. In addition, head speeds have been increased to 8,000 min-1, and in the case of the ACD8 model, we offer the option of performing demanding turning operations with no negative impact on milling operations. On the other hand, we have also significantly improved accuracy thanks to direct measurements on rotating axes.
Rotary tables are part of the company’s core business. What is JUARISTI’s contribution value-wise in this field?
JUARISTI has a huge amount of experience in the design and manufacture of rotary tables, with extensive know-how in this field. According to our machine philosophy, the rotary table is a fundamental part of achieving high precision and stability in machining, so we place special emphasis on this point. With the application of hydrostatic technology, our tables provide great damping and stability, reducing vibrations, besides getting a longer service life and still maintaining first-day type accuracy.
A very interesting tilting table model has recently been developed. What can you tell us about this project?
Traditionally, this type of table has been used to machine wind mill hubs with discrete tilting angle positions. However, this new application dallows continuous machining even with the tilting axis. Thanks to its master-slave system with hydrostatic guidance of the tilting axis, it achieves very smooth movements even with loads of up to 100 tonnes, so the surface finishes are excellent.
What efforts are being made in the field of Industry 4.0?
Industry 4.0 has been applied to our machines for a long time now, as sensor technology has been present in many machine elements. However, in recent years, special emphasis has been placed on machine connectivity and predictive maintenance.
In this respect, here at JUARISTI we have opted for our own software called “My Juaristi”, which brings together all the developments we have made in this direction. We have focused on two main objectives: the acquisition of data and its later analysis to show the customer how efficient it is in use and how to increase and improve productivity, as well as the generation of predictive maintenance plans based on the analysed data to increase machine availability.
What JUARISTI solutions have taken a quantum leap forward in technological innovation to improve machine accuracy or reliability?
In this regard, we have many technologies that have been successfully applied in recent years such as the RPT (RAM Precision Technology) that enables RAM output with excellent positioning and angle accuracy, or the AHC (Automatic Head Calibration) that performs the automatic adjustment of heads in the event of temperature variations or minor collisions. Apart from these systems, we have recently developed a verification software (QMV Quick Machine Verification) that allows a quick, simple and automatic verification of machine geometry.
One of JUARISTI’s main strategic milestones in recent years has been the construction of a state-of-the-art production center. How will customers benefit from the Accuracy Cube’s construction?
First of all, thanks to the Accuracy Cube, we will be able to provide more precise solutions for large volumes of work. Most importantly, we will be able to verify that all of these machines reaching the customer do so in precision conditions that were not 100 % verifiable before. On the other hand, we will increase the reliability of the solutions, as the entire manufacturing process will be 100 % monitored. And finally, we are going to reduce the machines’ lead-time, because thanks to these new technologies and amenities we will, in many cases, be able to simplify designs and processes.
Customers require increasingly versatile solutions that enable them to perform multiple types of machining. What work is JUARISTI undertaking to facilitate multitasking?
In this respect, we have made a clear commitment to develop solutions that integrate, besides the milling and boring operations, turning and grinding in a single machine. In this regard, we have developed state-of-the-art rotary tables, as well as specific heads for turning and grinding. And finally, we have tried to apply JUARISTI’s knowledge of these processes to the machine itself.
Another highly valued aspect is the autonomy of the solutions. What steps are being taken to make it easier for machines to operate unattended?
At JUARISTI, we consider that one of the main challenges of the future is to create machines that work unattended, in a safe and reliable way and with maximum precision. And making this work in non-repetitive machining processes, with multiple changes of heads, tools, pallets, etc. requires a great deal of effort. As a result, we have worked hard to achieve a high level of reliability in the different machine processes, as well as to optimise the chip and coolant management (which cause the most unscheduled stoppages). And finally, we have developed our own Software that will enable us to efficiently manage all the elements involved in production (parts, tools, pallets, part programs, etc.).
What is the technical management strategy for the next few years? Which areas will be given more importance?
One of the main challenges we want to address is to create machines that work autonomously, reliably and safely. The shortage of qualified machine operators is a recurring problem in most countries. So, it is essential to generate systems that help make the processes as autonomous as possible. The digitisation of these processes will help us along that path, but always using that technology as a means, and never as an end. As a second axis, we have the goal of increasing machine precision for large-volume parts, where these is a growing demand. As such, we will continue to provide the necessary intelligence to the machines to achieve a higher level of precision and, above all, a level of precision maintained over time.
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