LED Manufacturer Harnesses Benefits of GF AgieCharmilles’ Intelligent Tool Measurement

In the highly competitive field of producing optical products and molds for light-emitting diodes (LED), Taiwan’s Hong Yang Precision Industry Co., Ltd relies on GF AgieCharmilles’ award-winning Intelligent Tool Measurement (ITM) system to achieve and maintain tool accuracy.

Established 30 years ago as a mold company, Hong Yang has factories in both Taiwan and China, with the Taiwan facility primarily producing die products for LED and precision opticals.

GF AgieCharmilles’ milling and EDM technologies are important factors in the company’s success, says Ching Xu, mold and die department chief at Hong Yang. He also says that GF AgieCharmilles’ ITM system helps make it possible for Hong Yang to live its vision of innovation and progress.

Hong Yang’s assortment of GF AgieCharmilles machines includes a Mikron HSM 400 LP Precision high-speed milling center, which was conceived specifically for high-precision applications. Additionally, the machine is equipped with ITM, which allows the best possible machining repeatability.

“We chose GF AgieCharmilles ITM because it uses optics to measure, guaranteeing more accurate measurement,” says Mr. Xu. “In our process, we work about 16 hours per day and we are always using ITM to measure and check our cutting tools.”

Hong Yang is so confident in ITM’s results that it is the company’s only means of tool measurement.

“We do not measure our tools on a measuring machine before we put them in the tool changer,” says Mr. Xu. “We measure out tools directly by ITM. The operation guidance is helpful because we sometimes recheck the settings data with the operation guidance.”

Stanley Lee, milling application engineer with Agie Charmilles Taiwan Ltd, says that enabling its partners’ ability to meet and even exceed their customers’ expectations for precision was at the heart of ITM’s development.

“Our ITM system is unique worldwide and a true leap forward for tool measurement,” says Mr. Lee. “Tool accuracy has always been extremely important to manufacturers of complex, intricate and highly precise parts, but to a large degree, accuracy was limited to the accuracy of available measuring equipment. For example, traditional measuring technologies, such as the laser, are prone to pollution and this can lead to inaccurate measurement results. ITM guarantees accuracy by using optical tool measurement at full spindle speed.”

Available on GF AgieCharmilles’ range of high-speed milling machines, ITM does not just measure a single point, but optically inspects the whole tool contour. The detection of the effective contour is then compared to the nominal outline by ITM. Using that data, the system is able to locate pollution, such as chips and drops of coolant, and to digitally clean the tool before the measurement is made. When equipped with ITM, the Mikron HSM 400 LP Precision provides incomparably accurate measurement of the tool’s geometry and typically offers an absolute Z-reference and tool radius below the range of +/- 1 micron.

“Since its introduction, the ITM Smart Machine Module has offered many of our customers new levels of precision,” says Mr. Lee. He adds that ITM was the top winner at the Prodex Innovation Awards in 2010.

For the 1,200 employees at Hong Yang, excellence comes down to the tiniest details. GF AgieCharmilles’ ITM system meets their customers’ most challenging requests.

“In the production of dies for LED, poor measurement of the tool surface means the die cannot be used, because it doesn’t fit,” says Mr. Xu. “We have found that dies produced with GF AgieCharmilles’ technology are of the highest accuracy and quality.”

Accoridng to Mr. Xu, in an increasingly competitive marketplace, high accuracy and quality are not negotiable.

“GF AgieCharmilles’ Swissness means, to us, high precision and high quality,” says Mr. Zu. “GF AgieCharmilles is always here for us with ongoing services and application support.”

To watch a video on ITM visit: http://www.gfac.com/gfac/products/productvideos/itm-v.html

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