ABB Robots Help Shops Meet Production Challenges

Originally titled 'Robots Help Meet Production Challenges'

The robots are ideal for both low- and high-volume production, tending vertical lathes, horizontal and vertical machining centers, five-axis machines, and grinders. 

With more efficient and advanced machine tools entering the market, the demand for more intelligent and flexible robotic automation for machining applications is increasing. Coupled with the progressing shift from mass production to mass customization, the need to efficiently serve individual customer preferences is a primary concern of machine shops and manufacturers.

FlexLoaders, ABB Inc.’s standardized machine tool tending cells, include a six-axis robot ideally suited to the reach and payload requirements of the specific application, according to the company. Vision guidance provides the flexibility to automate the machine tending of parts that range from small to very large, increasing machine tool utilization by as much as 60 percent. The robots are ideal for both low- and high-volume production, tending vertical lathes, horizontal and vertical machining centers, five-axis machines and grinders. 

The company’s first offerings under this approach include a new single-arm YuMi robot and OmniCore. Both feature high flexibility to add collaborative applications to existing lines with confined spaces—from compact footprints and multiple mounting possibilities to full integration as part of the digital factory. ABB Ability and Connected Services are both built into the new controller, as well as the SafeMove2 safety software solution, which can convert any connected industrial robot into a collaborative one, the company says. In addition, the company also introduced its RobotStudio virtual commissioning and simulation software that enables teams to collaborate and efficiently design automation systems with a 3D perspective.