From the Latin, patella, which is a large round metal pot or vessel, boilermaking (pailería, in Spanish) or boilerworks is a technique used for cutting and joining pieces of metal or sheet metal in order to produce metallic deposits to store and/or transport materials, be they solids, liquids or gasses. They tend to be large pieces which are shaped and welded with other smaller ones. The process uses techniques such as mapping, straightening, cutting and welding for plates, tubes and profiles.
At first, boilerworks was applied to agricultural machinery, but nowadays it is used in different sectors, such as the HVAC, oil and naval sectors.
There are two types of boilerworks according to the thickness of the piece of metal. On the one hand, there’s light boilerworks, which is used for thicknesses of between 0.6 mm and 1.5 mm and for air-conditioning, suction or ventilation ducts; on the other hand, there’s heavy boilerworks, which is used for thicknesses over 5 mm and is applied to industrial piping systems for liquid conduction, such as oil pipelines or offshore installations.
But this technique isn’t just about large deposits and piping, a huge amount of work goes into the design process in order to manufacture parts that require great precision. Therefore, we need to work with software that is able to meet our clients’ needs.
At Lantek, that software is Lantek Expert Duct. It’s a powerful automatic generation module for shapes in boilerworks, offering a vast library of parameterized geometric shapes. This isn’t a program that simply performs a calculation in order to make parts, it’s integrated in the whole suite of management products, providing full traceability of the manufacturing process of ducts or deposits.
The value proposition is, therefore the ability to integrate and connect with other solutions, adding quality to the product and improving the ability to respond to demands. To this end, Lantek Expert Duct is integrated with the other programs in the Lantek Expert family, the most advanced CAD/CAM software for sheet metal in the metal industry for automating the CNC programming of machines. It can be used to design or modify the mapping of any part, regardless of the type of cutting machine (oxycut, plasma, laser or waterjet) and punching. In parallel, nesting helps to optimize the use of material.
Subsequently, Lantek Expert Duct can work with Lantek Expert Cut, the program for automating the programming of sheet metal cutting machines and with Lantek Expert Punch, for doing the same with punching machines. The fact that it is integrated, as if it were one program, means that any modification of a part will be reprogrammed taking into account the nesting and the cutting sequence.
In addition to this, it is also connected to other solutions, such as Lantek MES for production planning, ERP and Lantek Integra for manufacturing management (can be an external Enterprise Resource Planning) or even Lantek Analytics, which analyses data to search for advanced manufacturing solutions. At the same time, you can work autonomously or from a local network.
As we can see, these are smart solutions for smart manufacturing that reduce times, implying cost reduction and greater profitability.
Lantek Expert Duct is easy to use. You need only select the shape and enter the details and the program automatically calculates the deployment. This calculation takes into account the weights, cutting perimeters and material costs required. The software provides the end result in a 3D shape.
All of this offers an extremely precise and labored end result, but one which is less tedious than before thanks to the use of latest generation technology and the ability to innovate in order to meet our users’ demands.