Sophisticated Press Automation Systems are now becoming an emerging competitive advantage for a wide variety of manufacturers who stamp moderate to high volumes of metal as part of their production processes.
With consumer preferences continually changing and a cyclical economy adding to the uncertainty, building inventory of single product SKUs through long, static production runs is becoming an unacceptable practice. Manufacturers are being challenged now with frequent product design changes, lower production lot sizes and a need to reduce production costs.
The portfolio of benefits that ABB Press Automation Systems provides is significant:
- Safety: Safety is not negotiable and it’s an important reason for the customer to automate systems in the press shop. Safety features such as the Electronic Position Switch (EPS) and SafeMove™ are unique to ABB
- Complete, easy to use systems: ABB provides complete turnkey systems that are thoroughly tested and refined prior to final installation. Advanced Human Machine Interface (HMI) systems facilitate the intuitive programming and control of the equipment
- Flexibility: Systems are engineered to allow customers to produce a large variety of parts on the same line with minimal robot programming. Automatic tool changes and the ability to reverse or split the line are two examples of additional process flexibility
- Energy efficiency: The ABB systems consume less energy, an important factor for every company. Depending on the system energy savings range from 10 to 20%
- Cost/ROI: ABB is always looking for cost effective solutions to improve the Return on Investment (ROI). The cost of a robotic press tending system is just a fraction of that of hard automation systems, and the cost of maintenance is also less
Based on these benefits ABB provides press automation systems that improve the three main press automation performance criteria:
- Speed:ABB robots with their high torque and acceleration are best-in-class in speed optimization. New ABB products like the robot s with a rotational seventh axis, robots with a linear seventh axis and more recently Dynamic Drive Chain (DDC ®) help the customers to improve the throughput of the line
- Availability: The up time of a robotic system in the Press Shop is typically better than 95% and the ABB systems help to improve this factor
- Quality: More efficient part handling results in a consistently higher quality of finished parts. DDC is especially effective in optimizing the throughput where different stamping speeds are required on a single line