Adaptive Feed Control (AFC) for Heidenhain iTNC 530 controls allows the feed rate to be re-calculated and varied subject to the percentage of spindle power and other process data that is being monitored by the control at any one time, based on pre-defined limit values set during the ‘teach-in cut’. “The addition of Adaptive Feed Control to the Heidenhain iTNC 530 provides users with valuable benefits in respect of reduced cycle times, improved machine utilisation and the safeguards that if something unexpected occurs, such as material fluctuation or excessive tool wear, the control is constantly monitoring the situation and will prevent damage to the machine or component,” says Neil Prescott, CNC applications manager. The three key benefits of AFC are: optimised machine cycle times; tool monitoring; and reduced machine wear. Issues such as blow holes or excessive material can now be compensated for by the control automatically adjusting feed rates, with the feed reduced where material problems are present and increasing where practical to do so. The overall result is reduced in-cut times. In a similar way the AFC feature constantly monitors the actual spindle power with the feed rate. As this nominal spindle power increases it is an indication of a worn cutting tool and the feed rate is reduced accordingly. Once the feed rate falls below a defined minimum the control will react with an error message or by bringing the cycle to a controlled stop.