Y-Blog / Cobot Solutions to Keep Operations Moving
Cobot Solutions to Keep Operations Moving

Cobot Solutions to Keep Operations Moving

Posted: 7/10/2024 2:39:08 PM by Sarah Mellish
Topics: Arc Welding, Collaborative, Handling

Advancements for user-friendly robotic technology continue to spark greater confidence in company decision makers, prompting the implementation of safe, reliable and efficient robotic automation. Highly flexible and capable of adding capacity and supplementing manual labor, collaborative robots with industrial pedigrees, Power and Force Limiting (PFL) technology and intelligent peripherals are bringing highly relevant applications to life. So much so, that the global cobot market is expected to increase by 22% by the end of 2024, with similar levels of growth anticipated through 20281.

Portable Welding Solutions

Once relegated to a very simple collaborative arm with limited feature, semi-automatic weld equipment, today’s welding cobots offer quite the dichotomy. “Advanced technologies and customer demands have inspired the creation of full functioning collaborative robots with feature-rich weld packages and intuitive pendant applications,” says Josh Leath, Sr. Product Manager of Welding at Yaskawa Motoman. Take the solutions created by Yaskawa Partners, American Welding & Gas (AWG) and Ergonomic Partners, for example:

PEGASUS Collaborative Robot Cart – to address the need for skilled welders, AWG offers a practical and cost-effective weld cart solution for small- to medium-size parts that enables fast and easy setup for a variety of weld jobs. Designed for safe, direct-human interaction, the portable and compact AWG cobot cart features a six-axis, Yaskawa HC10DTP collaborative robot with a 10 kg payload, 1,379 mm reach and hand-guiding capability, and it is compatible with the YRC1000 or YRC1000micro controller that offer an external axis positioner for an optional 7th axis. A standard teach pendant or intuitive Smart Pendant is available. A Fronius power source comes standard, but a power source of your choice can be integrated to suit application needs. Extremely durable, the 5’x3’ AWG cart uses a patented modular fixture system that allows users to place clamps and components at any point on the tabletop. A 78-piece fixturing kit is also included.

Industrial-Hardened, Portable Weld Systems – to help manufacturers keep up with welding demands in the face of welder shortages and supply chain disruptions, Ergonomic Partners offers several portable weld systems that can revolutionize production workflow. Ideal for smaller parts and assemblies, the standard Portable Cobot Welder features the HC10DTP cobot with a Fronius TPS 400i gas-cooled torch. For applications involving multiple parts or larger assemblies, the Long-Reach Portable Cobot Welder with HC20DTP cobot is suggested. Offering a 20 kg payload and 1,900mm reach, this system uses the same Fronius TPS 400i torch and offers the same basic features, including: forklift pockets, foldable weld curtains, easy-to-roll casters and easy-to-program capability. A variety of options also exists for both systems, including Pulse Multi Control (PMC), Low Spatter Control (LSC), Cold Metal Transfer (CMT), push/pull systems for aluminum welding, liquid-cooled welding systems and manual welding torch setups. Furthermore, customized risers, docking stations and different size modular welding tables can be added.

Easy-to-Use Handling Solutions

“Decision makers once locked into fixed automation layouts with task-specific machinery are now able to integrate flexible solutions to better manage the influx in consumer product variety,” says Chris Caldwell, Product Manager of Material Handling for Yaskawa Motoman. “Collaborative robots are a big part of this, and they are especially beneficial for working alongside human workers, assisting with highly repetitive tasks such as case erection, labeling, packaging, pick and place, and quality control.”

Likewise, IP67 washdown ratings, along with easy-to-clean surfaces on select cobots, make them an ideal choice of use in sanitary settings. Options with NSF H1 food-grade grease are suitable for use in spaces where there is the chance of incidental food contact. For packaging and parcel ground shipping, high-speed heavier payload capacity (i.e., 20-30 kg) cobots are well-suited for processing common case weights, handling a wider variety of packages for improved cycle times. To accommodate stringent end user handling requirements, robot integrators, like Automated Motion, are utilizing cobots for a variety of workcell types, including:

VersaPalHC – to enable the transfer of cases weighing up to 35 lbs., Automated Motion offers the extremely reliable and robust VersaPalHC palletizing workcell. Featuring a 20 kg payload capacity, a 1,700 mm horizontal reach and a 3,400 mm vertical reach, the HC20DTP collaborative robot quickly and efficiently moves heavy cases with ease. Capable of moving eight cases per minute, the VersaPalHC is part of family of collaborative solutions, including the VersaPackerHC – a compact, mobile platform case packing solution that can perform over 10 picks per minute.

Flexible, Safe and Easy-to-Use Cobots
Discover more about Yaskawa’s highly versatile HC-series cobots. From enhanced worker safety and product quality to optimized production rates, flexible and efficient robotic automation can elevate your operations for a better bottom line. Not sure how to get started? Reach out to our robot experts and get your questions answered today.

Join Our Experts at AME              
If a face-to-face conversation would be more helpful to your decision-making process, plan to attend the Advanced Manufacturing Expo (AME) to speak to our experts. Held at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids, Michigan (August 7-8), this year’s show will host over 300 exhibitors and 5,400 attendees. At the show, be sure to visit the Yaskawa booth (#312), where you can gain inspiration for your production operations from several robot demonstrations, including:

3D Bin Picking
Using robust KEYENCE vision technology to facilitate fast, accurate handling, this demonstration features the GP8L extended-reach robot performing extremely fast and precise bin picking. Ideal for part detection and inspection, the KEYENCE 3D vision system uses pattern projections and structured lighting to accurately recognize then pick randomly placed parts. Capable of optimizing throughout in tight production spaces, the GP8L robot offers an 8 kg payload capacity, a 1,636 mm horizontal reach and a 2,894 mm vertical reach. The modular and lightweight SMC gripper on display can be tailored to specific applications to facilitate precise handling requirements.

Injection Molding Simulation
Featuring the GP4 robot, this demonstration highlights a fast, accurate injection molding process with the cost-effective Electro-Matic MINIJECTOR. Ideal for production runs ranging from 100 pieces to thousands, the compact and user-friendly MINIJECTOR on display molds parts, before the GP4 robot with Eins HC-5S gripper picks the parts for inspection and subsequent processing with an Eins NW-35-01c cutter. The GP4 robot offers a 4 kg payload capacity, a 550 mm horizontal reach and a 1,008 mm vertical reach. A Datalogic camera facilitates precise detection of objects.


1 Global Cobot Market Exceeds $1B in 2023, With Strong Growth Forecast, Design Engineering, 2024

Image provided courtesy of Automated Motion.

Sarah Mellish is a Marketing Content Specialist

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