Assembly line robots have been adopted widely in the manufacturing world. However, assembly tasks before robotic automation were previously done by fixed machinery or manual operators, both of which had their drawbacks.
Industrial robots are phenomenal when it comes to assembly line processes. They are accurate, fast, and precise compared to humans. In addition, they provide versatile automation with the capability to function with various parts or be redeployed for process changes. This is quite different from fixed robots which are inflexible.
Assembly line robots can be configured and guided by a robotic eyesight system or utilize a combination of both to finish manufacturing tasks. In addition, assembly line robots can join parts together, dispense adhesives and insert screws and pins.
Assembly line robots can handle parts that otherwise would be too delicate, intricate, and small for fixed machines or manual operators. In order to make the assembly robot more accurate, you can incorporate force sensors.
Force sensors are ideal because they offer feedback to the articulated machine about well parts are fitting together and whether more or less pressure is required. In addition, they can enhance the overall performance of the assembly robot and ensure product quality. That said; let’s look at why these robots are used in the assembly line as well as packaging tasks.
The Reasons Why Robots Are Used In Assembly And Packaging Tasks Include:
Accommodate Shorter Product Lifecycles
ROI (return on investment) for hard automation comes via high volume over time. Shorter package and product lifecycles make it hard to achieve ROI on hard automation in a suitable period. Robots offer a cost-effective solution in those device and packaging groups where changes keep the line fresh, and a blend of products are manufactured on the same line.
There is an added advantage of being able to redeploy the articulated robot as needs change. However, for the most part, these machines are task-independent.
Gain More Overall Flexibility With Regard To Products and Packaging
Hard automation is usually the best solution for tasks with a low mix of high-volume items because production doesn’t slow down due to frequent changeovers.
Robots will come on top with regard to the flexibility of operating a blend of products and packaging in smaller volumes. For instance, creating different kits with a couple of elements, including literature, is a typical medical application for robotics.
Robots make kits one hour after the next without stopping and can ascertain that all kits comprise the correct elements. In addition, robots can handle different product orientations and odd shapes.
This is the reason for the rise of robotic technology in the assembly and handling of syringes. Often robots are used for case packing and palletizing where there is frequent changeover and/or lower volume production.
Higher Quality and Throughput with Less Waste
Robots are precise, productive, and reliable. Robots are utilized in device assembly, device testing, and end-of-line device packaging. Eyesight systems allow robots to do intricate pick-and-place tasks as well as quality assurance.
In mixed automated and manual assembly, manual operators and robots can work in tandem. For instance, a SCARA robot can pick and place items in assembly tasks, while Cartesian robots can apply adhesive and fasten parts while personnel handles delicate final assembly.
Cylindrical and polar robots are general part handles used in automating processes and welding applications within a die casting operation and a machine tool. Rather than a labor eliminator, robots can be a labor enabler for higher quality and throughput.
Traceability can be improved through robotics by adding RFID or vision technology. The capacity to accumulate, count, open, close, pick, place, record weigh each interaction lowers risk for the medical device company.
Lower Labor Cost
Manual and tedious tasks such as assembly case packing and palletizing can be done via robotics with a high degree of acceptable ROI and a high degree of productivity.
Other benefits include quality and traceability. The cost of robotics has been decreasing so that activities that only made sense previously through manual operations which may now be financially viable. In addition, in a tight labor market, robots offer organizations options.
Rapidly Increase or Decrease Production
Robots enable the task to quickly and cost-effectively scale production up or down simply by adding or redeploying robots. In addition, the small task envelopes and numerous mounting options make it easy to incorporate one or more robots to enhance productivity within the line’s footprint.
For instance, adding Delta robots to a high-speed pick and place line can imply a massive jump in yield. In other applications, articulated or SCARA robots can be situated on the line and utilized for peak production giving the task quick response or seasonal capabilities.
Using robots in the medical industry will continue to expand not only due to the fact that this technology is affordable and versatile but also because robotics can meet numerous different production needs creatively and quickly.
Use Floorspace More Economically
With floor space being expensive, OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) and system integrators can build small footprint robotic solutions in ways not immediately obvious. For instance, robots can be attached to a rail and move along a slender space to various stations.
Robots can also be attached horizontally or be attached upside down above a workspace. Various combinations of the six kinds can be mixed and matched to design a uniquely small footprint solution. In addition, robotic cells today are built smaller with new sensing options that can lessen the safety envelope surrounding a robot.
Combining two or more robotic applications in a single cell is possible. Instead of a robotic palletizing cell, a new blend could easily be a case packing, palletizing cell, and three-robot cartooning in about the same footprint. Engineering is about solving problems; robots give industrial engineers alternatives they didn’t have before.
To sum it all up, robots have been implemented across a couple of industries. The automotive industry is a large adopter of industrial robots for assembly and welding applications. Robots are used in industries to assemble components such as gears, motors, and pumps.
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