Perfect micromachining for electronic components with GF Machining Solutions’ new FORM S 350

21-mar-2017 16:25

Electronic component manufacturers achieve the productivity and part quality essential to staying on pace with increased consumer uptake of electronics with GF Machining Solutions’ new AgieCharmilles FORM S 350 die-sinking electrical discharge machining (EDM) solution.

From information and communications technology (ICT) and automotive, we live in an increasingly connected world, where electronics’ artificial intelligence is becoming ever smarter and making life more efficient and comfortable. The evolution of this intelligence depends on electronic components performing better and at a price that is acceptable to the market. With the FORM S 350, electronic component manufacturers easily—and with extreme repeatability —deliver the perfect machining accuracy their ICT and automotive customers demand.

Thanks to the FORM S 350’s state-of-the-art design with breakthrough generator technology, accuracy-enhancing stability, thermostabilization and productivity-boosting machining quality, customers in electronic component manufacturing easily meet their ICT and auto-motive customers’ stringent quality requirements.

With this solution’s onboard technologies, profiles as small as 50 microns are at the customer’s fingertips. Perfect details can be achieved every time and with absolute confidence, thanks to the FORM S 350’s stable micro-spark machining process dedicated to the customer’s specific applications. With the innovative optimized sparks delivered by this machine, perfect details are easy to achieve, right off the bat. Moreover, onboard iQ (innovation + Quality) reduces electrode wear by up to 50 percent, making it easy to machine the tiny radii required in electronic component manufacturing.

Breakthrough generator technology

One key to the FORM S 350’s ability to connect customers to success is its latest-generation Intelligent Power Generator (IPG) conceived especially for superfinishing and precision applications. The IPG represents a breakthrough over standard EDM by overcoming historic process challenges when using copper electrodes, including electrode wear induced by electrical discharge multiple reopening. As a result of groundbreaking work by GF Machining Solutions’ EDM Research and Innovation department, speed improvements of 40 percent and corner wear reduction of 50 percent can be achieved. As a result, electronic component manufacturers are virtually unlimited in their ability to achieve highest accuracy, copy precision, surface quality and performance—even in mini and micro applications—in any conductive material.

With the machine’s new discharge circuit for spark erosion power modulation and the flexibility to maximize material removal, customers can reach unprecedented levels of quality and efficiency. Finishing detail is achieved by reducing the spark gap to just a few microns. At the same time, thanks to the FORM S 350’s embedded technologies, customers’ micromachining processes are optimized so that they consume fewer electrodes. Reduced electrode consumption positively impacts customers’ profitability in a number of ways, including shorter machining times and reduced downtime. In addition, the lifetime of high-precision, multi-pitch electrodes are extended while preserving maximum respect for details.

Conceived for mastery of accuracy

Engineered to ensure highest repeatable precision, this solution is electronic component manufacturers’ foundation for machining stability. Thanks to its short C-axis construction and oversize cast iron frame, super mechanical stability and precision are ensured across the lifetime of the machine. That means customers’ accuracy is uncompromised by part weight or dielectric volume. Precision is further advanced by the FORM S 350’s robust construction absorbing all machining forces, so a precise gap between the part and electrode is maintained.

Perfect repeatability is an important factor in reducing unproductive time, and FORM S 350 users experience the lasting positioning precision that only linear glass scales can guarantee. They eliminate classical errors like backlash, thermal expansion, and wear effects. Furthermore, GF Machining Solutions’ dual loop positioning system—a closed loop measuring system providing infallible precision—eliminates the need for periodic maintenance and calibration, whatever the travel. State-of-the-art Swiss assembly ensures that this solution delivers the production consistency customers demand.

Start with stable machining conditions

Workshop temperature fluctuation will never impact customers’ part machining precision, thanks to this solution’s dual thermostabilization system. It’s a major innovation when working close to micron dimensions. Pulsating air circulates through the cabin and is cooled in real time in accordance with the dielectric temperature and is measured by a double, differential probe. The whole structure of the X, Y and Z axes is similarly thermostabilized. With this solution’s continuous thermostabilization of the dielectric, there is no waiting for thermosstabilization prior to setup, so users achieve flawless positioning and geometrical precision right from the start.

Application-securing know-how

Automated machining options, easy-to-maintain machining conditions whatever the cavity depth, lower consumables costs and higher consistency, and enhanced injection results are customers’ direct benefits of GF Machining Solutions’ world-class application expertise. An extensive selection of automated machining options to cover the vast majority of micro applications are generated by the machine’s AC FORM human-machine interface (HMI), and small, deep cavities—whatever their depth—are easily machined with the FORM S 350’s specially adapted technology.

Consumables costs are reduced, higher consistency is attained, and productivity is boosted by wear partitioning technology adjusting machining power, motion and electrode change. On top of all that, customer can take their surface texturing to new levels of perfection with GF Machining Solutions’ new three-dimensional (3DS) texturing technology enabled by the intelligent generator.

Productivity is further accelerated by GF Machining Solutions’ application expertise driving better particle evacuation in cavities without flushing or deformation of the cavity. That’s adistinct plus for applications such as connector technology, ribs, and micromachining. The available, additional C axis helps customers avoid manual operations so they save time and gain productivity, while the FORM S 350’s new rotary tool changer boasts storage capacity for up to 160 electrodes and a double gripper clamp to reduce unnecessary movement and appreciably speed up the loading process.

One-source solution provider

As a one-source solutions provider, GF Machining Solutions is the one partner with the expertise to optimize electronic component manufacturers’ global processes with solutions adopted to their electrode machining needs. One example is the Mikron MILL S for machining copper and graphite electrodes with high accuracy in preparation for the EDM process. This solution fits perfectly into customers’ manufacturing process chain: It delivers speed and quality at the highest level, processes copper and graphite (wet or dry) in a single machine, offers unbeatable flexibility in three- and five-axis applications, and ensures highest productivity per square meter with Automation.

Another example of GF Machining Solutions’ expertise is the higher degree of autonomy guaranteed by its System 3R Automation solutions. Automation keeps production going, whatever the time of day or day of the week, so customers get shorter lead times, higher productivity, and quicker payback on their capital machine investment.

Like every solution from GF Machining Solutions, the FORM S 350 is backed by a comprehensive range of Customer Services to help customers achieve the highest performance with their equipment

Form Cut s350With the FORM S 350’s state-of-the-art design with breakthrough generator technology power system, accuracy-enhancing stability, thermostabilization and productivity-boosting machining quality, customers in electronic component manufacturing easily meet their ICT and automotive customers’ stringent quality requirements.

Profile of GF Machining Solutions
GF Machining Solutions is the world’s leading provider of machines, diverse technical solutions and services not only to the tool and mold making industry but also to manufacturers of precision components. The portfolio ranges from electrical discharge machines, high-speed and high-performance Milling machines—including clamping and palletization systems, 3D Laser surface texturing machines and Spindles—to solutions for Tooling and Automation, services, spare parts, expendable parts, consumables and Digitalization solutions. GF Machining Solutions is a globally acting Division of the Georg Fischer Group (Switzerland) and maintains a presence on 50 sites worldwide within its own organization. Its 3’255 employees generated sales of CHF 992 million in 2017. More information can be found at


More information:

Paul Thickett
Head of Design & Brand Communications
GF Machining Solutions
Rue du Pré-de-la-fontaine 8
1217 Meyrin

paul dot thickett #at# georgfischer dot com

About GF Machining Solutions