WELDING robots have progressively become faster, cheaper and more accurate, while the welding controls have become more integrated into the robot system, according to David Crossley manager - channel partners robotics for ABB Australia .
“Advancements in wirefeeders, gases and arc control allow use of the rapid arc process for faster deposition rates while improving penetration and reducing cycle time by 30% or greater,” Crossley told Manufacturers’ Monthly.
One of the main advances, says Crossley, has been in off line programming capability.
“By utilising new programming products 3D models can be loaded into the computer and the robot weld paths automatically generated by simply selecting the joint to be welded,” he said.
“The program will then automatically program approach positions and torch angles to set requirements. The finished program can then be loaded straight into the real robot and after minimal calibration, welding can begin. This eliminates lost production time when trying to program in new parts, as the robot can continue running while the new program is written offline.”
Another key development, says Crossley, is in the area of predictive software. He said there was software that enables users to enter in many welding variables. The software then predicts the weld that will be produced when the robot completes the real weld.
ABB Australia 03 8544 0151.