Cutting system controls, including height control

  • US 7,071,441 B1
  • Filed: 12/10/2003
  • Issued: 07/04/2006
  • Est. Priority Date: 12/10/2003
  • Status: Active Grant
First Claim
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1. A cutting system comprising:

  • a plasma cutting torch reciprocally movable relative to a work piece along a Z-axis generally perpendicular to the work piece, the torch being connectable to a power source and providing an arc voltage during cutting, the arc voltage being proportional to a distance between the torch and the work piece;

    an X-axis reciprocal driver and a Y-axis reciprocal driver for moving the torch horizontally along any prescribed path on the work piece;

    an electrically operable Z-axis reciprocal driver connected to the plasma cutting torch for reciprocally moving the plasma cutting torch along the Z-axis;

    a controller including a microprocessor coupling the controller to the X-axis reciprocal driver, the Y-axis reciprocal driver, and the Z-axis reciprocal driver, the controller having individually adjustable settings including a climb zone setting, a dive zone setting, and a selected rate setting, Z-axis driver speed is increased at the selected rate in the selected climb zone and the selected dive zone, and the controller further includes a maximum climb rate setting greater than the selected rate setting and a maximum dive rate setting greater than the selected rate setting for controlling the Z-axis driver speed outside the climb zone and dive zone, respectively, to tune the cutting system for a fast response without creating an oscillation condition; and

    an electrical height control feedback circuit connected to the plasma torch and the driver to sense the arc voltage and actuate the driver to move the plasma cutting torch to maintain the arc voltage within a preset limit, the feedback circuit is further connected to the controller for actuating the driver at a rate in accordance with tuning of the cutting system.

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