After eight years of research and development, Octopod has arrived from Thibaut. Operating with an integrated vacuum pump system and battery, Octopod works without a ramp or a vacuum pump or hoses.
A “smart” wireless communication system ensures a continuous exchange between the machine and the Octopods. During machining, the level of depression of each Octopod is controlled by the machine, which offers a perfectly secure clamping. The identification of a possible leak on one of the Octopods is made much easier and faster than with a traditional system. The battery level of each Octopod is optimized, which enables a battery life of 12 hours. The Octopod is made of two main parts -- the base and the upper part called a vacuum-top, which is available in three different formats: a round one with 154 mm (6.06 inches) diameter, a round one with 114 mm (4.49 inches) diameter and a rectangular one with dimension 250 x 35 mm (9.84 x 1.38 inches). The upper part is interchangeable, which makes the positioning of any vacuum-top on any Octopod base possible.
Octopod is compatible with all new or recent Thibaut machines. The technology can be easily implemented on machines already installed by installing a USB wireless card and a specific program on the screen of the machine.
The advantages of Octopod over traditional vacuums are multiple. Firstly, it saves up to 50% of time on the clamping system installation and makes it possible to start machining the workpiece earlier. When placing each Octopod on the table, the operator activates a button on the front of the cup to clamp the suction cup on the table. Then the operator places the workpiece on the table and with a single click on the machine screen, clamps the workpiece in significantly reduced time.
Its added value is also economic because the absence of a vacuum pump reduces up to 95% power consumption and reduces 100% of water use for clamping. In addition, continuous monitoring of suction cups clamping level avoids any loss in material due to workpiece displacement during machining. Also, this monitoring system can automatically stop the machine in case the Octopod battery level is too low.
The Octopod system is designed to withstand the stonemasons’ environment. Its robust construction ensures high resistance to pressure, to moving and to heavy use. The Octopod can be easily rinsed with water, and its materials are resistant to corrosion. This concentrate of technology is well protected by a sealed envelope, which isolates it from dirt and moisture.
Finally, machine operators benefit from more comfortable working conditions. They will have to move less from one place to another during the installation of the clamping system. The absence of hoses also offers more available space on the table. The working environment is made more secure due to the absence of hoses that could cause operators to fall or get injured, and the sound level is reduced, making daily work more pleasant.