Even though companies have the idea that robots are difficult to program, they soon learn that robots are easier to program and that in the long run, it’s easier to train someone to operate the robot than teaching somebody to weld. Now, however, a team of students at the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in the Netherlands has taken another approach – they’ve created the world’s first stainless steel bike made via a welding-based 3D-printing technique. The students want to demonstrate the potential of robot welding technology. See video
Why invest in robot welding automation?
Robot welding automation is no longer just for large manufacturers; it also offers benefits for small enterprises. Robot welding is an automated process that improves productivity and weld consistency to lower costs for production, labour, and materials. Likewise, robots also help companies gain a competitive advantage over those businesses that have not made the transition to robotic welding.
The decision to adopt robotic welding automation is getting easier every day because of the lack of skilled welders available to fulfil the requirements of large and small companies. Thus, they can also gain greater flexibility by adding automation. Particularly SEMs are beginning to make the investment in this technology and realizing positive results.
There are some key considerations to make before adding robot welding automation in your company. Some key considerations for the welding process are:
- It is important to ensure that the parts to be welded are appropriate to an automated welding process,
- selecting the right system,
- physical space and training welding operators properly
These are just a few factors that can help companies gain the best in efficiency and maximise the return on investment.
Benefits of robot welding automation
Robotic welding offers consistency and high repeatability of the welds produced. A robotic welder is more consistent and thorough and can move from one weld to the next quickly, speeding up the entire process.
Significant improvements in productivity and finished part quality
Lower production costs by reducing labour requirements. You can have a good welder supervising the work of several automated cells instead of having to find and train a lot of welders for the job.
Consistent cycle times, no break in production, and better weld allowing for less weld spattering and less post-weld clean-up
Reduce the time and money spent on rework. Lower welding production costs by reducing waste materials.
Robot-based welding automation can tolerate much harsher work environments