Optimal positioning of irregular shapes in stamping die strip
The International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
The nesting of two-dimensional shapes is a common problem, where raw material has to be economically cut. As for the single-pass single-row strip layout, several algorithms, based on established methods, have been proposed. Moreover, it should be noticed that the optimum layout should also consider a few constraints, like grain orientation for subsequent forming operation, correct bridge width, and the commercial roll of metal width in order to make solutions applicable in real industrial
... nments. Most of the procedures until now shown in literature are quite complex and often ignore these real constraints. They usually make use of sliding techniques and are not able to effectively work with relatively multiple-connected figures. In particular, most of the different proposed procedures are based on the No Fit Polygon (NFP) computation of non-convex polygons, which often generates holes. This work is a proposal for a more efficient method, which can be used in heuristic procedures. In order to overcome some faults of most of the former methods presented in literature, in this paper a new geometric entity called "No Fit Path" (NFPh) of nonconvex polygons is applied. It allows researchers to find solutions of nesting problems even when there are NFP faults due to degenerate solutions. Moreover, the No Fit Path allows researchers to easily read, modify, or share their results, overcoming all those problems arising from the usual large amount of information and from the different origins and formats of the obtained data. Given two nonconvex polygons, the algorithm is able to calculate their NFPh very quickly and without any approximation by a polygon clipping method. In this paper a totally automated procedure has been developed. This procedure firstly obtains the "No Fit Path" (NFPh); secondly, between all the existing positions on the NFPh, the algorithm searches the optimal one, minimizing the global waste. The proposed approach also allows designers to set an optimal orientation of the shapes on the roll of metal, taking account of the grain orientation in order to obtain the best mechanical characteristics for the cut pieces.