Optimized Cutting Layouts for Panel-Sizing Saws

The AutoPanelSizer ­software determines optimized cutting layouts for the ­production of rectangular parts from rectangular raw material and minimizes waste, production times and manufacturing costs. ­AutoPanelSizer generates layouts that can be produced with straight, ­continuous (­guillotine) cuts. In case of ­interlinked plants, the maximum number of cutting stages is taken into account. ­This makes the software suitable for common cutting technologies applied in the machining of wood and also in the glass, metal and plastics processing industries.

AutoPanelSizer can compute layouts with up to three cutting stages plus head cuts on the first stage (see examples). On the third cutting stage, it is possible to only recut individual parts or to separate multiple parts. The software is able to comply with miscellaneous constraints ­given by machine or material properties.

Available remainders and various sizes of raw sheets can be included in the ­optimization. The computation of a typical ­cutting layout takes from only a few seconds to just a few minutes.


  • Waste prevention
  • Reduction of production costs
  • Reduction of production time
  • Anticipatory planning
  • Regulation of residual stocks
  • Numerous customization options

Impact on production

In the optimization process, the software considers both production times and ­manufacturing costs. It can off-set time-­consuming processes, such as head cuts or the storage of remainders, against a more efficient material utilization. By ­combining identical cutting plans into ­packages, ­simultaneous cuts are feasible thereby reducing production time. ­AutoPanelSizer offers various possibilities to control the generation of such package cuts.

Furthermore, each part to be produced may be assigned to a part group. This allows for destacking restrictions as well as ­requests regarding a production sequence to be taken into account. In connection with part groups, the optimization can also be carried out across different material types.

Anticipatory production by differentiation of required and optional demand

In AutoPanelSizer, parts may be declared as required (compulsory) or optional. The former have to be placed on the cutting layouts, the latter are only placed if they fit well and improve the yield. For example, parts that are needed the next day can be declared as required, while parts that are needed later can be declared as optional. This anticipatory production improves the efficiency of the cutting layouts and reduces the overall material consumption.


AutoPanelSizer is distributed as a pure optimization kernel. It is designed to be integrated into other applications, e.g. plant control or ERP systems, through an XML-interface. Alternatively, AutoPanelSizer can be employed via a file interface or as a server application. The software is available for all current ­Microsoft ­Windows PC operating systems. Based on the latest research results, Fraunhofer SCAI constantly improves and enhances AutoPanelSizer. AutoPanelSizer benefits from the expertise of the institute in optimization.


  • Optimization
    • Consideration of production times and manufacturing costs
    • Balancing time-consuming processes against yield improvement
    • Optimization across multiple material types
    • Adjustable runtime and optimization strength
  • Machine
    • Generation of guillotine cutting layouts
    • Limitation on the number of stages
    • Minimum and maximum lengths of cuts and saw feeds 
      • for stripes, parts, identical stripes and end sections
      • for mapping restrictions caused by machine widths, transport devices, suction cups, grippers, pressure beams, etc.
    • Setting the shift direction
    • Consideration of the saw blade thickness (kerf)
    • Trimming at the sheet edges 
      • individually adjustable for each side
      • Trims for head cuts
  • Material
    • Length and width
    • Individual availability
    • Marking as remainders
    • Consideration of grain
    • Optimization considering multiple materials
  • Parts
    • Required and optional demand
    • Consideration of grain
    • Parts groups
      • for specifying a production sequence
      • to model destacking restrictions
  • Remainders
    • Minimum and maximum size
    • Weighing up against yield and optional parts
    • Separate settings for head and main plans
    • Preferred use of existing remainders
  • Head Cuts
    • Sizes of the sectional plans
    • Limitation on the number of head sections
    • Weighing against yield
  • Recuts
    • Maximum and minimum length of recuts
    • Trim on the opposing side of the recut
    • Restriction of recuts to one side of the part (length or width)
  • Package Cuts
    • Maximum number of sheets
    • Weighing against yield


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© Fraunhofer SCAI
For this cutting layout AutoPanelSizer uses optional parts (dark blue), a head cut (orange) and parts with recuts.
© Fraunhofer SCAI
AutoPanelSizer computes this cutting layout in 0.3 seconds. It has been taken into account that only 3 destacking spaces are available. Parts with the same color must be destacked together.