Understanding Arc Voltage Height Control

What is Arc Voltage Height Control and why is it one of the most important aspect of plasma cutting?

One of the most important aspects of cutting with plasma is maintaining the proper torch height during the cutting process. Maverick CNC plasma tables utilize automatic arc voltage height control (AVHC) systems, also referred to as automatic torch height control (ATHC)systems. The torch height control system is responsible for setting your initial pierce height and for maintaining accurate height during the cut process. Proper pierce and cut heights are critical to maximizing consumable life and achieving the best possible cut quality

The AVHC system lowers the torch to “sense” the location of the metal to be cut. It then raises the torch to the proper pierce height and begins the pierce process. Once the pierce is complete, the torch lowers to the proper cut height and starts motion along the cut path. Arc voltage is generated by the plasma arc transferring from the electrode to the work pierce. The AVHC measures this voltage and adjust the height of the torch to maintain the desired arc voltage, thus maintaining proper torch height. MaverickCNC controllers are preloaded with all pierce and cut heights, so all the operator has to do is select the material type and thickness.

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What are the benefits of AVHC?

  1. Proper Pierce Height:
    • Piercing too low allows molten spatter to contact your shield, causing damage and reducing consumable life.
  2. Proper Cut Height:
    • Improper cut height will impact cut quality and often cause excessive bevel angle. Improper cut height may also decrease consumable life.
  3. Adjusts To Material:
    • AVHC allows the torch to automatically adjust height as needed for any distortion in the material being cut.
  4. Improved Hole Quality:
    • Proper torch height while cutting small holes is critical to the quality and greatly impacts the cylindricity of the hole.
  5. Minimizes Collisions:
    • After cutting a part, the height control system will raise the torch to a pre-set “safe” height before traveling to the next cut location.
  6. Reduces Work:
    • Because MaverickCNC controllers are pre-set with all AVHC values, the operator only has to select material and the system auto sets.

Contact the MaverickCNC Sales Team for additional assistance:  888-988-7224

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