Aeronaut Automation

Automated Cutting Systems & Software

Nesting and Plotter Control Software

Tangent is the auto-nesting and plotter driving program developed by Aeronaut for the industrial textile user.

Tangent closes the gap between CAD drawings and the plotted output making just-in-time and one-off cutting faster, easier and more profitable.

Rather than develop another niche market CAD program for pattern design, weve chosen to use Vectorworks, a powerful, flexible, cross platform 2D/3D CAD program for pattern design and editing. With the addition of industry specific mini-programs called plug-in tools, this approach is much more powerful and economical. Patterns can be bounced between CAD and Tangent as easily and quickly as a mouse click.

Tangents work environment

Unlike other nesting and plotting software, Tangent has been designed from the beginning for industrial textile users. It does not matter if you are cutting upholstery fabric, tension membrane structures, leather, or carbon fibre, Tangent is the most flexible, easy to use and powerful program around.

Tangent is the closest thing to actually plotting from your CAD program. A large format flat bed plotter is not a printer Its a CNC machine. Cutting speed, acceleration, tool up and down delays need to be controlled for each tool But we want it to work like a printer. When you click on the button to start a plot, you expect the plotter plot exactly what you draw on screen.

In the past, plotting CAD files has been a hit-and-miss affair requiring the preparation of special plot files in your CAD program, export file formats which are different to your drawing format, specialised translators to convert CAD data to the plot file format, and different tool settings for every file.

Tangent uses a CAD file format as its own file format so that drawings appear in Tangent exactly as they appear in your CAD program. When nested and saved by Tangent they can be opened back in your CAD program for editing with no data loss at all.

Tangent supports many more drawing entities than most nesting software. Lines, polygons, rectangles, rounded rectangles, polylines, arcs, arcs in polylines, and circles to allow files to be plotted without compromising the quality of the original drawing. Tangent reads Vectorworks, DXF-AAMA, Illustrator EPSF, SMSW NTV, HPGL and Gerber NC files.

Tangent drag and drop between windows

Tangent is a modern program, written from the ground up in a modern programming language. Its a multi window program which supports drag and drop from one queue window to another. Tangent supports manual, semi-automatic and automatic nesting even into irregular outlines for working with leather, off cuts and when re nesting patterns on patterns. Tangents splitting routines allow you to accurately split patterns and add seam allowances much faster than in CAD software. Designs can be drawn full size and split to match the fabric you have on hand, minimising waste.

Tangent has a powerful array of plotter control features to allow the widest range of plotting work to be handled. Cutting tools can be easily assigned to shapes in CAD drawings so a shape intended to be cut with a rotary blade can be interchanged to a drag or reciprocating blade at a mouse click. Complete tool setups including cut pressures, speed, acceleration etc. can be saved with the job and re-imported for new work. Plot order and tool setup are all on the plotter control palette and can be rapidly changed by dragging the tools.

Tangents cutter control pallette

Tangents output supports optional cubic spline smoothing and arc fitting to give the best results from all files. Plotted output can be previewed in Tangent to avoid plotting mistakes.

Tangent supports the control of a lot of external equipment. This might be simple devices such as digital pressure control for precise cutting, laser alignment pointers for stripe matching, or ink-jet pens. More complex equipment such as overhead camera/projector rigs can be used for leather work, allowing hides to be traced and patterns to be nested while texture and grain are checked. The system can also be used for pattern matching on any fabric.

Tangent is being used in many applications including sail making, blind making, canvas & PVC, short run box production and carbon fibre cutting. Contact Aeronaut for prices and competitive upgrades.