Alma became interested in water jet cutting as soon as the first machines were produced at the end of the 1980s. Although the main advantage of this technology is its capacity to cut virtually any material, without heating it, there are many applications for sheet metal. One of the very first subcontractors to buy Alma for its water jet cutting machine used it to cut very thick shielding steel plates for military vehicles! Regardless of the type of use and the parts that are cut, the almaCAM Cut software supports the specificities of water jet technology and is suitable for producing assemblies or cutting single parts.
Water jet cutting is a cold cutting process using a water jet projected at very high speed, sometimes combined with an abrasive additive. The water pressure is first increased from 4,000 to 6,500 bars and then the pressurized water is projected through a very small diameter orifice (0.08 to 0.4 mm in diameter). Depending on the pressure, the speed of the water jet can reach 1,200 metres/second. The water particles projected against the material’s surface cut it cleanly and precisely. It is necessary to add an abrasive to cut hard materials, especially metals such as steel, aluminum, etc.
Water jet cutting is recommended for any material that cannot be cut using thermal processes, and for metal parts whose mechanical properties must not be affected by the cutting process.
The main advantages of water jet cutting are: very clean cutting preventing any burrs, high precision cutting to within a tenth of a millimeter, the parts are not deformed, high speed cutting and the capacity to cut very thick steel plates. The productivity and flexibility of water jet cutting make it possible to produce mechanical parts in small, medium or large series.
almaCAM Cut is the ideal system to program your water jet cutting machines, particularly for cutting along profiles. It supports all the technological specificities of water jet cutting (relieving, speed decrease/increase, drilling on lead-ins/outs, etc.). Whether you are managing large-scale nesting or cutting single parts, almaCAM Cut makes it easy to adjust cutting parameters to the wide variety of materials that can be cut using a water jet.