Kawasaki robot plays key role in automated welding cell

Telford-based automated systems manufacturer Bauromat, one of Kawasaki Robotics integrators, has recently supplied and installed a robotic welding system to precision pressings and stampings experts Clamason Industries of Kingswinford.

Clamason are an ISO 9001 / 14001 accredited supplier to industry and are well known across the automotive and medical sectors. Bauromat supplied Clamason with a HiArc 200M, one of its more compact robotic welding systems specifically configured for arc welding. The system is manufactured integrating a Kyrus manual rotary manipulator but can also be feature powered manipulators depending on customer specifications. Clamasons' new system also includes many user-friendly features to ensure consistent weld quality, one of which enables the operator to input the parts and begin the welding cycle manually. Loading two assemblies into the Bauromat designed and manufactured tooling, the operator then manually rotates the manipulator into the system to begin the cycle.

Programmed by Bauromat's experienced robotic engineers, the chosen robot, a Kawasaki BA006N, then follows the programmed weld path, joining three parts together to form a small pressing assembly. Thanks to advanced sensor technology designed into the tooling, the system recognizes what has been put into the workstation and reacts accordingly. For instance, if the parts are incorrectly loaded, it identifies the anomaly and the robot will not begin the cycle until the correct loading profile has been put into place. Likewise, and demonstrating machine flexibility at its best, if only one set of parts has been loaded rather than the normal two sets at a time, the robot will only weld the single assembly present, ignoring the adjacent empty fixture.

A full Fronius robot package has been integrated into the system, consisting of a TPS320i MIG welding power source, a wire feeder, loom, torch and crash system. Together with the speed and precision of the Kawasaki robot, all these parts combine to assist in making the welding process quick and efficient. To improve the performance of the cell and further reduce both cost and downtime, the system also includes a Tipman torch cleaner which removes debris from the torch tip to maintain a consistent welding quality with each cycle.

Fronius also provides Pulse Multi-Control (PMC) and Low Spatter Control (LSC) software, both of which were included in this installation. To maintain a clean, top quality weld, PMC controls the heat input with extreme accuracy (to help minimise any distortion of the parts), adjusting the arc and keeping it stable. Concurrently, LSC, as the name infers, minimises spatter and increases arc stability through a short-circuited transfer mode. In applications like this one which demand the highest integrity of weld, the Fronius PMC and LSC combine with a Kawasaki robot to permit to mass production volumes without compromising on quality. In common with all Bauromat systems, this Kawasaki Robotics / HiArc 200M system is fully and securely enclosed using Talos guarding by Kyrus: a high-quality construction made using aluminium extrusions and featuring easily changed panels. Safety access fittings by Fortress Interlocks are also integrated into the system for ultimate machine and user security.

Kawasaki Robotics has been supplying industrial robots to manufacturing industry since 1969, and its BA006N as used by Bauromat in this application is a popular choice for users needing a specialised robot designed exclusively for arc-welding installations. The machine is a full 6 axis robot, featuring a reach of 1445mm and capable of carrying payload of 6kg. Despite its speed the Kawasaki BA006N is delivered to customers with repeatability to +/- 0.06mm guaranteed over the lifetime of the robot. Kawasaki Robotics offers a comprehensive range of associated equipment for arc welding, allowing both customers and integrators almost unlimited freedom to use their own preferred sources whatever the application.

Ian Hensman of Kawasaki Robotics says: "This recent installation at Clamason further highlights the excellent working relationship we continue to enjoy with Bauromat. Our shared vision of delivering bespoke systems that provide customers with unrivalled performance remains at the forefront of the many applications we work together on".

For more information go to www.bauromat.com and robotics.kawasaki.com/en1.

Kawasaki Robotics (UK) Ltd

Unit 4, Easter Court
Europa Boulevard, Westbrook

+44 (0)1925 713000



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