BlueCell XML Import from Microvellum (Overview)

BlueCell XML Import from Microvellum (Overview)

Overview of BlueCell XML Parts File Import

BlueCell® is a software optimizer produced by Eurosoft, Inc. It optimizes or determines the best location and rotation of parts on a material sheet to maximize material usage.

It is one of several optimizers that may be used to optimize Microvellum data. Others include Ardis and CutRite, as well as the ubiquitous Microvellum Sawing Optimizer.

BlueCell can produce output for both nested routers and panel saws. Microvellum currently connects to the BlueCell sawing optimizer, but not to their nesting optimizer.

The Microvellum output for a processing station of type “BlueCell XML” is similar to that for “Ardis Parts File,” “CutRite MDB,” or “CutRite ASCII” in which you set up and process with a station set up specifically for one of those four types of optimizers. This is in contrast to a station set up with a type of Microvellum Sawing Optimizer (or Schelling HPO) in which you set the “Output Type” property to one of the selected formats.


Fig. 01 – Processing Stations

You do not attach a Microvellum toolfile to a BlueCell processing station as you would for stations of the types Nesting Optimizer, Microvellum Sawing Optimizer, Single Part GCode, or Horizontal Boring.


Fig. 02 – BlueCell Parts File Station Properties

Set up processing station associates if you want data associated with a secondary machining process to appear in the BlueCell parts file. Set these up on the Associates tab. For example, you may want the horizontal boring data produced by an edgeboring machine station to appear in your parts file and thus be available on the labels produced by the optimizer software. Add and configure a new associate of the type “Edge_Bore,” as explained in the tutorial below. This will result in a parts file containing data produced by a separate processing station.

If you define two stations of the same type, such as two Edge_Bore stations, as in the following figure, the resulting XML file will contain data for both Associates, separated by a pipe symbol, as shown in figure 6.


Fig. 03 – Processing Station Associates

Set up the folder that you want to contain the XML parts file in the processing station properties at: “Files & Pictures > File Location.”

If you need Microvellum to produce part pictures, set up the folder that you want to contain those picture files in the processing station properties at: “Files & Pictures > Part Picture File Location.” Also, set the Picture Type and size/zoom factor there.


Fig. 04 – Processing Station Files and Pictures

The XML file that is produced by the BlueCell processing station contains a total of 31 data locations for each part. This means that you may pass 31 different pieces of part data from Microvellum to the BlueCell optimizer. Eleven of these are passed by default when producing the XML file. Six of the remaining 20 are created according to the stations used when processing and the associates defined as explained in a previous paragraph. The remaining 14 fields are user-definable. Set up these user-defined fields in the processing station properties in the Custom Settings tab. See the BlueCell XML Import Tutorials for more information.


Fig. 05 – Processing Station Custom Settings

Here is the XML file output from the Custom Settings and Processing Stations Associates shown in figures 3 and 5.


Fig. 06 – BlueCell XML Output from Custom Settings and Associates

Notice that the values for fields UserText05 and UserText06 contain two values separated or delimited by the pipe symbol. This is because we used two edgeboring stations to process the work order and defined two edgeboring stations as associates, as shown in figure 3. If we had used only one edgeboring station, then only one value would be displayed here.

Figure 6 shows the default Microvellum output with no Associates or Custom fields defined.


Fig. 07 – BlueCell XML Default Output

Click here for the article “BlueCell Parts File (Reference)” for more information about individual XML file elements and other BlueCell processing station commands and properties.

Use and General Procedure When Optimizing Microvellum Data with BlueCell

  • Purchase & configure the BlueCell® software from Eurosoft to consume the XML.
  • Purchase the Microvellum module “Parts List for BlueCell.”
  • Create a project and work order in Microvellum.
  • Create and configure a BlueCell processing station in Microvellum (see tutorial below).
  • Process a work order with the BlueCell processing station.
  • Configure BlueCell to consume the XML produced by Microvellum.
  • Optimize the XML file with BlueCell (see the BlueCell documentation from Eurosoft for more information).

Click here to view a tutorial of creating and configuring a BlueCell processing station.


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