Applications / Material Removal

Material Processing Examples



Case Studies


Fast, Flexible and Precise Material Processing

Cutting, Finishing, Deburring and more with Motoman Robots


Yaskawa Motoman offers manufacturers a wide range of robotic solutions for cutting and material removal applications. Our robots have been used extensively in laser, plasma, waterjet and oxy-fuel cutting applications, as well as grinding, polishing and finishing.

Many robots are not designed for the rigors of grinding, polishing, buffing or other material processing tasks that use the robot to manipulate a material removal tool (wire brush, sand paper, knife) over the part surface or contours.  In addition to an extensive line of six-axis general-purpose robots, Yaskawa Motoman has a robust, application-specific cutting robots designed with the rigidity needed for material removal applications.  In order to ensure constant surface pressure on contoured products, an active force sensing device is often used to optimize the finish on the part and increase efficiency of using abrasive consumables by as much as 10 times! 

Robotic material processing systems are often required to perform multiple tasks -- cutting and deburring, sanding and polishing, etc.  Two approaches – multiple spindles or spindles that can change media or tools – can be used to perform the various tasks.  The method used is generally determined by the process. Experienced Yaskawa Motoman application engineers will help you determine the best approach for your project.

Material Removal Processes

Cutting and Material Removal applications typically consist of multiple operations. While the operations vary with the application, we’ve listed several of the most common operations below.

Industrial Grinding with a Motoman Robot

Industrial Grinding

Grinding applications typically mean bringing parts to a grinder or sander and holding the parts precisely or moving along a specified path. We have a wide range of robots for larger parts. The HP-series robots have the payload capacity for handling large parts and are a parallel link design, which is very stiff for demanding high pressure grinding applications.


Finishing & Polishing

For finishing and polishing applications, the parts are frequently smaller. For these applications, robots from our GP Series are a good choice for the task.  These high performance, durable robots are ideal for these applications.  For part to process tasks with larger parts, the MH215 or MH250 are good choices.


Motoman robotic deburring machine


For gear deburring, we offer preconfigured and customized robotic systems designed for precise deburring of gears up to 20” in diameter and 10” tall.  These are general guidelines that may differ depending on the specific gear configuration.  Other configurations are available to meet specific customer needs.

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Waterjet Cutting

Robotics can improve accuracy and cycle times, particularly in waterjet cutting applications where improving the time handling the material is critical to achieving TAKT time.

Plasma Cutting MA3120-Accufast.jpg

Laser & Plasma Cutting

This robotic process requires a powerful high-speed robot with high-rigidity and precision drives. Common robotic uses include cutting small holes and sharp corners in metal.


Ultrasonic Cutting

A clean and agile alternative method. Yaskawa Motoman's ultrasonic solution delivers cleaner cuts and infinite flexibility for trimming, routing, deflashing and more. Patented robotic tools add versatility and streamline changeovers for low-volume secondary operations.



Many people think of sawing as a material handling application.  In cases where the robot loads product into or out of a saw, it certainly has many of the same characteristics.  In recent years, we have seen an increase in applications where the robot is manipulating raw material as it is cut by the saw blade.  This creative application provides a highly flexible solution for cutting a wide range of materials.

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