Press Release

19th September 2011
Beckhoff at EMO 2011: Hall 25, Booth E32
TwinCAT 3 – convenient embedding of CNC in the overall system
The heart of the Beckhoff CNC is the TwinCAT automation suite. The latest generation, TwinCAT 3, makes new engineering options possible thanks to the integration into the development environment of Microsoft Visual Studio®. TwinCAT NC I/CNC is fully embedded in the overall system. This covers the entire range of classic CNC path control up to the high-end system for complex motion and kinematics requirements. The TwinCAT "Kinematic Transformation" library enables robot kinematics to be mapped in software and integrated into the controller. This seamless integration offers the option of connecting PLC/C/C++ or Matlab®/Simulink® with a CNC system. Since all languages offer appropriate interfaces, both IEC 61131 and a C/C++ application can be responsible for the CNC sequence.

The TwinCAT automation software forms the universal platform for the control of PLC, Motion and CNC functionalities, visualisation, safety technology, measurement technology, Condition Monitoring and robotics. In version 3 of TwinCAT, the engineering is considerably facilitated by the integration of all tools into one development environment. This development environment is based on Microsoft Visual Studio®, into which the configurators and the programming environment for IEC 61131 are integrated. Further languages are available for programming in C and C++. Likewise, Matlab®/Simulink® can be used as a development platform for controllers and filters.

Microsoft Visual Studio® offers the possibility to use modern tools for software engineering. This way, using Team Foundation Server, it is possible to track both changes in the source code and bugs, or to manage software projects. An editor for the convenient configuration and programming of safety applications is also integrated. The safety programs can be written in function block language or in C. In addition, the safe drives can be configured here. Calculation tools for the new machine directive are integrated and facilitate the necessary calculations.

The PC- and EtherCAT-based CNC solution from Beckhoff integrates all machine functions into one hardware and software platform. This powerful system is characterised by high performance, openness and flexibility. The universal TwinCAT automation software and the fast EtherCAT fieldbus system, Industrial PCs, Control Panels, I/O components and drive technology combine to offer a complete solution for CNC machining. This way, the productivity of manufacturing facilities can be increased, the controller design becomes ‘leaner’ and the costs for hardware, engineering, commissioning and maintenance are lowered considerably. The Beckhoff CNC platform is suitable for all industries, processing technologies and machine kinematics: from compact dental machining centres and woodworking machines to complex plasma cutting and welding machines. The CNC solution from Beckhoff is scalable and modular, meeting the exact requirements of modular and multifunctional machine concepts.

Press picture

  • <p>TwinCAT 3 – eXtended automation – integrates the runtime modules necessary for machine control and in addition offers numerous options for programming in a framework. </p>

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    TwinCAT 3 – eXtended automation – integrates the runtime modules necessary for machine control and in addition offers numerous options for programming in a framework.

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