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Home / ADVANCES IN ROBOTIC WELDING

ADVANCES IN ROBOTIC WELDING

The next generation of innovation and advances in industrial robot technology promise to increase your productivity in arc welding and other multipurpose applications.

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The next generation of innovation and advances in industrial robot technology promise to increase your productivity in arc welding and other multipurpose applications.

 

ARC WELDING ROBOTS WITH FLEXIBLE AUTOMATION
ABB (Auburn Hills, MI), offers the optimized, compact IRB 2600 with a high payload capacity of up to 20 kg and an ultra-wide working range and the best accuracy and speed in its class, helping to increase output and introduce faster cycle times also and lower scrap rates for improved productivity. This robot is particularly suitable for arc welding, as well as machine tending and material handling.

Flexible mounting enables optimized cell designs. This robot range has many flexible mounting possibilities including floor, wall, inverted or shelf mounted, which helps to reduce floor space and increases access to the equipment being served. Wall-mounting is a new possibility for a robot of this size. These features enable more creative cell designs in a wide variety of industrial segments and applications.

 

Compact, lightweight and fast. Another key feature of the IRB 2600 is its compact and lightweight design, which results in a total arm weight of less than 300 kg. It has the same footprint as the IRB 4600, the first robot to be launched from the 4th generation mid-range, and occupies less floor space than any other robot in its class. This small footprint makes it easier for the arm to reach down below its own base; providing improved access for more flexible and compact production. The IRB 2600 is extremely fast and can improve production cycle times by up to 25 percent. The high speeds and very fast acceleration are achieved by a combination of the new lightweight design combined with the patented QuickMove motion control software.

Three versions – all protected for hash environments. The IRB 2600 family contains two short arm variants (1.65 m) for 12 kg or 20 kg payloads and a long arm variant (1.85 m) with a 12 kg payload. Up to 27 kg payload is achievable for pick/place and packaging applications with the wrist vertical. The IRB 2600 has as standard Ingress Protection IP 67 for the entire robot and further protection levels Foundry Plus 2, Foundry Prime 2 and Clean Room versions are available as options.

The IRB 1600ID is another leading robot designed specifically for arc welding. All cables and hoses are routed inside the upper arm, simplifying programming and providing optimum protection for all media, including power, welding wire, shielding gas and pressurized air. The integrated dressing design reduces the swing of the dress pack and improves its predictable motion, allowing the robot to work in tight spaces and around parts of a complex geometry that might have components that otherwise could catch on welding torch cable.

Without the worry of dangling cables the robot is easier to program. The hoses do not rub against the part being welded, prolonging their lifetime and reducing downtime. “The new upper arm design reduces the size of the torch envelope to better work on tighter, more complex fixtures,” explains Mark Oxlaid, an arc welding specialist with ABB Robotics, NA. “This extends the robot’s real working range and eliminates the concern of the welding torch cable getting caught or blocking access to the part.”

With the high payload of the standard 1600 model, the IRB 1600ID is the strongest and quickest robot on the market and is well suited for general industrial and automotive applications.

Longer and more predictable dresspack lifetime. On a conventional robot, the dresspack runs externally along the robot’s upper arm. Each time the robot arm moves, the dresspack comes into swing, causing wear and reduced cable lifetime. The irregular motion pattern of the dresspack also makes it difficult to predict its lifetime. In contrast, the integrated dressing used in IRB 1600ID allows the dresspack to follow every motion of the robot arm instead of coming into swing, ensuring a longer and more predictable lifetime.

Compact design. Integrated dressing makes the robot’s outer dimensions smaller. This extends the robot system’s real working range, a crucial factor when welding on fixtures with a complex geometry. It also eliminates the risk of damaging the dresspack in case of collision with the fixture.

What you see is what you get. When programming a conventional robot, there is always a blind spot. Because of the external routing and unpredictable motion of the dresspack, programmers have to use their imagination to ensure the dresspack won’t hit anything during operation. With the IRB 1600ID, the geometry of the robot is well defined. This means that programmers can disregard the impact of an external dresspack on the robot’s motion pattern, and focus on optimizing the process instead.

Available as a standard robot or part of a turnkey solution. The IRB 1600ID is the latest addition to an increasing range of specialized arc-welding solutions. The robot is available as a standard robot or equipped with all the necessary arc-welding process equipment. Customers can also choose to have the robot delivered as part of the turnkey arc-welding concept FlexArc, which includes the IRC5 robot controller, power source, positioner and related process equipment. The IRB 1600ID is available in all major markets worldwide.

“There is simply no better way to get precise welds on a wide variety of parts within a short period of time than with flexible automation,” said Oxlaid. www.abb.com/robotics

ROBOTS FOR HARSH WELDING ENVIRONMENTS
KUKA Robotics Corporation (Clinton Township, MI) offers the latest in robotic welding innovation in the KR 16 arc HW and the KR 16 L8 arc HW welding robots that use a hollow-wrist design with a 50 mm opening that allows the integration of commonly-used welding packages, and achieve a repeatability of less than ±0.05 mm. With the protection classification of IP54, the KR 16 arc HW and the KR 16L 8 arc HW are suitable for operation in the harshest welding environment conditions.

The combination of the fast rotating 6 axis and powerfully driven lightweight arm make these best-in-breed welding robots, extremely productive and time savers. The KR 16 arc HW, with a payload of up to 8 kg, is ideally suited for larger work pieces and thick plate applications and an ideal choice in long reach applications with reach of up to 2,015 mm.

The KUKA Robotics System Partner network is designed to mutually benefit each organization’s users by extending the way customers can acquire tailored solutions with the major competitive and technological advantage of high precision KUKA robots. The KUKA Robotics System Partner Network includes experienced OEM machine builders, system providers, application specialists and expert robot integrators. www.kukarobotics.com

HIGH PERFORMANCE WELDING ROBOTS
The MA3100 “Master Arc” welding robot from Motoman Robotics (Dayton, OH) features an extended-reach arm that reduces the need for tracks. It is the longest robot arm designed for arc welding. Available in floor-, wall- or ceiling-mounted configurations and ideal for multiple robot layouts, the Motoman® MA3100 reduces welding cycle time with cutting-edge Sigma-5 motor control technology and new ARM (Advanced Robot Motion) control.

The MA3100 has a 3,121 mm (122.9 in) horizontal reach, 5,615 mm (221.1 in) vertical reach and ±0.15 mm (±0.006 in) repeatability. Its integrated through-the arm cabling eliminates cable interference, simplifies programming and reduces cable wear. Welding utilities (gas hose and feeder signals) can be routed through the robot base. The MA3100 is perfectly suited for use in workcells with larger workpieces, as well as for applications that require access to parts in tight spots or those with possible interference from fixtures.

The MA3100 robot uses the dynamic, next-generation DX100 controller that features patented multiple robot control technology to easily handle multiple tasks and control up to eight robots (72 axes), I/O devices, and communication protocols. Featuring a robust PC architecture with unmatched memory capacity, the DX100 uses a Windows® CE programming pendant with color touch screen. Menu-driven arc welding software is provided.

Digital welding interfaces are supported for Miller Auto-Axcess and other brands of power sources. The energy-saving DX100 controller features faster processing speeds for smoother interpolation, advanced robot arm motion, built-in collision avoidance, quicker I/O response and accelerated Ethernet communication. It is compliant to ANSI/RIA R15.06-1999 and other relevant ISO and CSA safety standards.

The fast and highly flexible 6-axis MA1400 “Master Arc” welding robot significantly increases uptime by integrating the torch into the upper arm. Available in floor-, wall- or ceiling-mounted configurations and ideal for high-density layouts, the space-saving MA1400 robot increases productivity due to its cutting-edge Sigma-5 motor control technology.

The MA1400 robot has a 1,434 mm (56.5 in) horizontal reach, 2,511 mm (98.9 in) vertical reach and ±0.08 mm (±0.003 in) repeatability. Its integrated through-the-arm torch cabling eliminates cable interference, simplifies programming and reduces cable wear. Power cable and welding utilities (gas and air hoses) can be routed through the robot base. The MA1400 is perfectly suited for use in high-density work cells with multiple robots working in close proximity, as well as for applications that require access to parts in tight spots or those with potential interference from fixtures.

The MA1400 robot uses the dynamic, next-generation DX100 controller that features patented multiple robot control technology to easily handle multiple tasks and control up to eight robots (72 axes), I/O devices, and communication protocols. Featuring a robust PC architecture with unmatched memory capacity, the DX100 uses a Windows® CE programming pendant with color touch screen.

With payloads from 3 kg to 600 kg (6.6 lb to 1,323 lb), the dynamic, high-speed HP-series “High-Performance” robots are extremely versatile, general-purpose manipulators that excel at a wide variety of material handling applications, including machine tending, packaging, palletizing and assembly. HP-series robots can also be used for arc welding, dispensing and other tasks. Full six-axis flexibility also allows them to perform complex handling motions and other operations in a multi-function workcell.

Heavier-payload models are often used in Autonomous Robot Cells® where the HP-series robot serves as a highly flexible positioner, manipulating the part for processing by up to seven additional robots – all controlled by a single multiple robot controller. HP-series robots are compact and require minimal installation space. They can be placed close together to reduce overall floorspace requirements or placed close to conveyors and other equipment to improve part/product accessibility. HP robots can be floor-, ceiling- and shelf-mounted to provide highly flexible layouts, and extended-reach versions are available.

HP-series robots are controlled by the next-generation DX100 controller that includes patented multiple robot control technology to easily handle multiple tasks and control up to eight robots (72 axes), I/O devices and communication protocols. They feature a robust PC architecture with unmatched memory capacity, the DX100 uses a Windows® CE programming pendant with color touch screen.

The fast and highly flexible 7-axis VA1400 “Versatile Arc” welding robot dramatically increases freedom of movement and maintains proper welding posture at all times. Located in the lower arm, the seventh axis (E-axis) acts as an elbow, providing improved torch access into tight places and allowing the robot to easily reach both sides of a part. Available in floor-, wall- or ceiling-mounted configurations and ideal for high-density layouts, the space-saving VA1400 robot increases productivity and provides the ultimate in welding performance.

The VA1400 robot has a 1,434 mm (56.5 in) horizontal reach, 2,475 mm (97.4 in) vertical reach and ±0.08 mm (±0.003 in) repeatability. It features integrated through-the-arm torch cabling, which eliminates cable interference, simplifies programming and reduces cable wear. Power cable and welding utilities (gas and air hoses) can be routed through the robot base.

The VA1400 is perfectly suited for use in high-density workcells with multiple robots working in close proximity, as well as for applications that require access to parts in tight spots or those with potential interference from fixtures. The superior welding access provided by the VA1400’s seventh axis often makes it possible to consolidate cells and simplify equipment, by eliminating the need for a part positioner. This robot also uses the dynamic, next-generation DX100 controller. www.motoman.com

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