Heuristic optimization system for the determination of index positions on CNC magazines with the consideration of cutting tool duplications

Baykasoglu A., Dereli T.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PRODUCTION RESEARCH, vol.42, no.7, pp.1281-1303, 2004 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


This paper presents a meta-heuristic optimization system developed for the determination of optimal index positions of cutting tools on the tool magazines (automatic tool changer (ATC) or turret magazine, etc.) of CNC (computerized numerical control) machine tools. The selection of index positions is performed using a simulated annealing (SA) algorithm that takes the following as the input: (1) a list of cutting tools assigned to certain machining operations; (2) the number of copies of each cutting tool available in the workshop; (3) total number of index positions on the tool magazines; (4) the indexing time of a tool magazine of a CNC machine tool specified by manufacturer. Then, the SA algorithm determines index locations of cutting tools on the tool magazines. Dereli et al . and Dereli and Filiz previously studied the present problem by using genetic algorithms (GAs). However, the duplication of cutting tools was not taken into account in their works, although it can reduce the total tool-indexing time and therefore improve the productivity considerably. Nevertheless, the consideration of the 'tool duplications' makes the problem much harder to model and to solve. In this paper, a novel solution representation-scheme based on the SA, which enables easy manipulation during feasible neighbourhood solution generation, is proposed for the determination of the index positions of cutting tools on the CNC magazines with the consideration of 'tool duplications'. Example problems are solved to present the implementation and merits of the proposed optimisation system. It is shown that it is possible to allocate the cutting tools in an efficient manner on the CNC magazines with the developed system.