by Kat Griffin Kat Griffin

Sinker EDM Machine

In the ever-evolving landscape of mold making, Sinker Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM) stands at the forefront of innovation, driven by advancements in machine design, software, artificial intelligence (AI), and automation. These developments are necessities in meeting the demands for higher precision, reduced lead times, lower costs, and enhanced repeatability. 

Below we explore 4 of the latest enhancements in Sinker EDM technology.

  1. Speed as the Key Catalyst: Speed is the driving force behind recent Sinker EDM advancements, leading to fewer electrodes and finer surface finishes. The resulting surfaces often require minimal to no manual polishing, saving valuable time. Combining these speed enhancements with automation systems, palletization, and user-friendly interfaces maximizes consistency and allows for increased unattended machining hours.
  2. Machine Design Evolution: Innovations in machine design play a critical role in achieving higher speeds and precision. Features such as thermal stability, increased rigidity, and the integration of AI contribute to higher jump speeds and consistent performance. Real-time active sensors alert operators to temperature changes and volumetric errors, ensuring a stable machining environment. Some machines even monitor the surrounding environment, aiding in climate control and accuracy maintenance.
  3. Automation Solutions for Complex Workpieces: As workpieces become more complex, automation solutions are imperative. Implementing robots for electrode changes during part transitions or integrating graphite and hard milling machines into a cell streamlines operations. Machines with robust adaptive controls are the easiest to automate, and smartphone-like controls make them more user-friendly, appealing to the next generation of mold making professionals.
  4. The Rise of AI in Sinker EDM: AI is reshaping the Sinker EDM scene, facilitating a more intuitive interaction between operators and machines. AI-enabled machines allow operators to input answers to simple questions before the machine takes control. Real-time condition monitoring within the burn process enables the modification of specific parameters, reducing electrode wear and overall costs.

The Future of EDM: Towards Intelligent Machining

As we move towards the 5th industrial revolution, Sinker EDM machines are expected to become more intelligent. The concept of Industry 5.0 is a stage of development in manufacturing where machines become smart enough to perform complex actions all by themselves, leverage advanced technologies and computing capabilities to collaborate with humans, and work faster and more efficiently.