Flexible and reconfigurable assembly lines
The planning and furnishing of flexible and reconfigurable assembly lines are the core business of El.Ma. in the industrial automation field.
They can be configured to function with the necessity of the client and consist of rotating tables, linear pallet chains with interchangeable positioners, and integrated between them is an automatic piece handling unit. Anthropomorphic Robots guided by vision systems are integrated into the line for the preparation of pieces to assemble.
Such lines lend themselves to the production of pieces with an extremely variable mix.
One of these lines was presented at Bimu fair in 2004 (Milan - Italy).
Jobs can be programmed through the operator interface which is made up of various touch-screen monitors connected with the supervisor.
The process control system is connected to the various stations via CANopen, while the supervisor communicates to the operators the fundamental values regarding process management.
The pieces are bulk fed onto a lifting plate for selection, picked up, then oriented and deposited by the robot arm which is guided by a vision system.
They can be picked up from various adopting areas, and if needed, various types of manipulators are automatically changed.
The pieces, single or pre-mounted, are transported on the assembly unit, usually consisting of a rotating table, turned by brushless motors for precise reference in correspondence to the active operator group and commanded for determination of the type of pieces to make.
With the change of the transport plate (the pallet on the motorized transporter), the robot manipulator, the positions on the table and reprogramming of the table positioning like station numbering and with dedicated units of different types, it's easy to change the production mix and thus in increasing this possibility, the more versatile the line becomes.
All this can be done, also the final utilizer can draw from the obvious advantages of having to make few changes when passing from one production to another even outside of the family of pieces currently present as a reference for the localization of the initial configuration.
Obviously process control, on which a PC is also integrated, is connected on the network and can be directly viewed from El.Ma., where the technicians are connected with remote assistance, and can help the operator, guided at a distance, when an inconvenience occurs and adjustments may be needed.
In the pictures you can see details ot this line and the control software on touch-screen panel.