2NA History & Future
The 2NA nesting software was developed as part of a project to develop an automated nesting system suitable for use in a factory setting using "just in time" inventory principles (i.e. no or little operator interaction should be required and no "extra" parts are to be produced in an attempt to reduce material waste). The primary goal was to replace the existing code used at the Auburn Sheet Metal Center (SMC). The old nesting software was unreliable in that it often produced nests with large amounts of material waste. This forced the nesting system operator to either accept the inefficient nest or to engage in the time-consuming process of rerunning the data with various parameter settings hoping to obtain a reasonably efficient nest. The 2NA package was tested with success on sample nests from the SMC and the Developmental Center (for graphite composite parts). Currently the SMC (now called Light Structures Fabrication and Assembly - LSFA) is running approximately 1000 production nests per week. The 2NA package is also currently used in the Core Automated Nesting Systems (CANS ).
Since the first release of 2NA, we have added the capability to "nest in cutouts", i.e. placing parts inside other parts that have holes. Future enhancements will depend on demand but currently there is interest in extending the rectangle packing algorithm of 2NA to 3D, and for making 2NA into a web based application.