September 21, 2012

Mikron Multistep XT-200 lowers cost per part by 35 percent

Agno, September 2012 - The Mikron Multistep XT-200 machines even the most challenging workpieces in a single clamping operation and with a chip-to-chip time of less than one second. The system can be retooled in just a few minutes. Up to four machining spindles are always in simultaneous use. This lowers cost per part significantly - for example by 35 percent in the case of a German manufacturer of turbocharger housings.

One automotive supplier based in Germany produces 500,000 turbocharger housings in five different variants annually. The batch sizes vary between 500 and 10,000. As a result, the machine operators have to retool at frequent intervals. With the old machines, this used to take 80 minutes. But today, with the Multistep XT-200, just 20 minutes is enough. Other key facts and figures are evidence of considerably improved productivity: there used to be twelve employees operating four machines on a 300-square-meter floor area. The machines were multi-spindle machining centers and automatic lathes; workpieces had to be clamped twice. Today, the company produces the turbocharger casings with just six employees and two machines on half the floor space. This has lowered cost per part by 35 percent.

Maximum precision
The Multistep XT-200 machines the workpieces on five and a half sides in a single clamping operation. Depending on the variant, between 30 and 40 machining steps, such as turning, milling and drilling, are necessary. The entire process, including loading and unloading is fully automated. The production center guarantee maximum precision at all times: tolerances are plus/minus 25 micrometers, the equivalent of the quarter of the diameter of a human hair. There are virtually no defective parts, as the process capability index CpK of 1.67 shows.

A wide range of applications
The turbocharger casings are just one of the practically limitless potential applications for the Mikron Multistep XT-200. Other examples are cases for ABS systems, turbocharger impellers, nozzle holders for common-rail injection systems, hydraulic pump housings and heat sinks.

Mikron Multistep XT-200

The Mikron Multistep XT-200 machining system combines the productivity of a transfer machine with the fleixibility of a machining center. The system consists of a loading and unloading module and of up to four machining modules. The machining modules contain two working spindles, each of which can access a magazine disk with 18 tool slots. Workpieces with dimensions of up to 200 x 200 x 200 millimeters can be machined on up to five and a half sides without the need for re-clamping, even when being transported between modules. The chip-to-chip time is less than one second. A range of measuring and monitoring systems, the clamping device with EROWA interface, the rigid design and the stable B/C axis all guarantee maximum precision.

Video: Multistep XT-200 in action

Brief profile of Mikron Machining
Mikron Machining, a division of the Mikron Group, is a leading supplier of customized, highly productive machining solutions for the manufacturing of complex high-precision components made of metal. The division's most important market is Europe, primarily Germany. The Asian market is becoming increasingly significant. Mikron Machining comprises three production companies, namely Mikron SA Agno (Switzerland, headquarters), Mikron Tool SA Agno (Switzerland) and Mikron GmbH Rottweil (Germany), as well as the sales and service company Mikron Corp. Monroe (USA). It employs around 500 people. Mikron Machining is part of the Mikron Group.

Mikron SA Agno, Axel Warth, Head of Marketing and Business Development Phone +41 91 610 62 45,

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