Fully automated calibration cell with bin picking
The customer Trelleborg Antivibration Solutions Germany GmbH requested a fully automated line for the calibration of rubber-to-metal bonded products, such as ball studs, bushings, hollow shaft joints, and others. The calibration press was operated manually before, which was labor-intensive and physically demanding as some parts weighed almost 8 kg.
The aim was not to achieve higher productivity but to have a universal solution for autonomous production of a very wide range of different products with different dimensions and weights, and fast and easy product changeover as sometimes the line needed to be reconfigured several times per day (low series production). The solution was supposed to run for several hours without an operator’s supervision or intervention.
The customer also requested a solution that could be readjusted for new products without extensive programming knowledge.
The solution enables automated picking and loading of randomly oriented products from a supply pallet using a 65-ton hydraulic calibration press and a Fanuc industrial robot. The robot is equipped with 3D vision from Photoneo – the PhoXi 3D Scanner – and the company’s robotic intelligence tool for bin picking applications – Bin Picking Studio.
The solution even allows simultaneous calibration of inner and outer surfaces. It offers up to 650 kN of force and 450 mm MAX STROKE. The press is driven by powerful servo-hydraulics for precise force/stroke control and energy efficiency.
The electric sliding table is running on retractable rollers for a maintenance-free operation. It is equipped with a gripper to extend the central calibration pin when in use.
For the unloading of finished products, different patterns can be selected and adjusted based on the product geometry.
The Photoneo solution was chosen based on the partner’s positive previous experience with its products and solutions. Though the solution is about 40% slowlier than manual operation, it dramatically decreased labor costs and enabled the production of a very wide product range. Because of this, it was impossible to optimize the process for each product type.
Since the line is running 24/5, the output is still higher when compared to previous manual operation in two shifts per day since manual press operators only worked 6,5 hours per shift.
The calibration press was completely developed, designed, and built in-house at ROMI Automation s.r.o.