Material removal is one of the major tasks in any manufacturing industry, with many of them using industrial robots for most of their material removal, tending, and handling applications. However, even with the looming shortage of manual skills and hard economic times, many industries embrace the latest trends in robotic automation to simplify material removal for efficiency and productivity.
Robotic machining technology for material removal applications includes advanced and flexible collaborative robots with robotic arms, sensors, and robotic vision. Moreover, they are gaining traction over the traditional machine tools because they offer much more than the traditional machines. One good example of an advanced robotic automation system is the milling robot arm.
Material removal applications include trimming, milling, and cutting, deburring, grinding, sanding, routing, and polishing, among several others. They are complex applications that require harsh and sometimes abrasive methods for precision, accuracy, and consistency. Some of the material removal parts are tiny, making it necessary to apply spot removal techniques.
Benefits of using robotic arms for material removal
One of the major advantages of using robotic arms for material removal is flexibility. For example, in milling, using a milling machine robot provides the workspace with flexibility, allowing the robot to support undercuts and work from all directions.
- Consistency and accuracy
When a customer finds a part of a product that does not meet the expected tolerance levels, he/she will return the whole bunch. Using robotic arms increases consistency and accuracy as they help to reduce rejected parts significantly.
The robots provide a flow-on effect that reduces concerns with product quality such as warranty, scrap, and rework. They have integrated robotic vision that provides them with error-proofing ability ensuring great product quality and process.
- Reduction of production time
Another major benefit f robotic arm in material removal applications is the significant reduction of production time. The robotics come with speed and throughput improvements coupled with force sensing and vision materials that reduce the time it takes to complete the applications. They also keep all the processes in-house, which helps curb outsourcing, thus reducing lead-time and improving process control.
- Improved Safety
Machine removal is complex and can sometimes expose humans to harmful and toxic chemicals and debris. Some can even cause burns. In addition, many of the applications are repetitive and strenuous as they involve the movement of materials from one place to another.
Working for an extended time in such conditions causes fatigue and lack of concentration, leading to injuries. Using a milling robot arm or automating the other machines enhances the staff’s safety allowing them to focus on less risky tasks.
- Less space occupancy
Material removal applications require enough space for both machines and humans. Robotic arms are flexible and highly compact small machines that do not occupy much floor space. It is possible to install them overhead to service more than one machine or put them inside the machine like the case of a CNC machine. The small footprint of the robotic arm saves space while improving productivity and ease of movement on the factory floor.
Investing in manufacturing robots is not cheap, especially to companies just coming up or those struggling to make ends meet. Even established companies still find it costly to invest in good and reliable manufacturing industrial robots.
Robotic arms are surprisingly more affordable, and they have much lower operating costs. They are efficient, and they increase productivity allowing businesses to recover their initial investment costs within the shortest time possible.
Wrapping it up
The processes required of a milling robot arm and other robotics varies from one product to the next and one application to the next. Irrespective of the application, robotics speed and efficiency are sufficient to compete with other companies effectively. Robotics offer better quality products, improve speed, and streamline all the material removal applications without compromising the workers’ health or the work of the other machines.