Minimizing machining airtime motion with an ant colony algorithm

Haslina Abdullah, Rizauddin Ramli, Dzuraidah Abd Wahab, Jaber Abu Qudeiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


In machining operations, repositioning the cutting tool requires airtime motion of the cutting tool. Minimizing the airtime motion during pocket machining in mass production is important for increasing the efficiencies of the machining process. This paper presents an optimization of airtime motion during contour parallel offset machining by minimizing the tool retraction based on Ant Colony Optimization (ACO). Optimization of the tool retraction is modelled as an application of the Travelling Salesman Problem (TSP). To evaluate the performance of ACO, its result for the length of the non-productive tool path is compared with that of conventional computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software. It is found that the ACO method produces a non-productive tool path length that is approximately 60% shorter than the conventional method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-165
Number of pages5
JournalICIC Express Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Ant colony optimization
  • Non-productive tool path length
  • Pocketing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • General Computer Science


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