The Welding UR
Mobile Automation has recently installed a Universal Robot in Queensland, Australia, at Rockpress. Rockpress is a leading manufacturer of metal works, from metal componentry through to major structural and industrial works.
A primary robot was installed to support the production cycle for an aging, highly qualified and skilled boilermaker team to enhance efficiency and productivity gains around their daily fabrication tasks. The effectiveness of the robot yielded immediate results, generating further interest from management to explore additional integration on site.
Six months post initial UR welder project, the second robot was installed specifically to cater for lager jobs. Both robots can now operate independently or alternatively together on the same job and all the boilermaker is required to do is maintain, program and ensure the quality of the product is still present. Thus, improving health and safety conditions by reducing repetitive stress injury (RSI) and saving the aging and highly skilled employees from having to hold onto the torch or climb all over the product for long periods in order to weld the job out. The integration also enabled the skilled workforce to focus on value added activities for the business.
Upon installation of the first robot, the client reported an immediate 40% gain in productivity, as the robot does not stop. The operator simply moves around the table replacing parts as they are completed by the robot. On further evaluation, the client integrated a second robot, which functions simultaneously and independent from the other collaborative robot.
This not only offered a consistent quality control mechanism for this type of welding application, but also enabled the deployment of another person in a technical/ specialised hand welding role. Overall adding greater direct value in the way of quality assurance, safety, improved productivity and diversification of team activities.
The initial primary welder /collaborative robot operator is now running multiple jobs and increasing the production base outcomes with a higher mix /volume of work. The client has provided feedback that, “the gains are obvious, and we have improved”.