Tips for Success with Collaborative Robots
Posted on Jan 09, 2018 7:00 AM. 2 min read time
The suitability of a robot in a factory depends on many things: factory setup, employee skills level, type of robot chosen etc. Whether you are new to robots or just want to scale up, there is always something new to learn about collaborative robots. If you are looking for answers in this regard, the Tips for Success with Collaborative Robots eBook starts by suggesting you to hop on the lean robotics bandwagon: a methodology for simplifying robotic cell deployments.
In regards to the actual tips for success with collaborative robots, the eBook looks into the three stages of robotic cell deployment, namely Design, Integrate and Operate. The focus is on the OPERATE phase, where the manufacturer is already producing valuable parts.
The operate phase is a continuous loop, which is why there are numerous ways you can optimize this cycle and plan for your next robot.
What are the benefits of optimization? This is the question this eBook addresses. 2 million jobs will be unfilled in the next decade. The question is whether we can turn to robots for a solution.
Manufacturers are experiencing challenges, especially the lack of “robotics” skills. This puts them at risk.. Fortunately, there are tips on how to cope with the challenges.
The three action points suggested here are:
● Automate manual operations
● Increase automation know-how
● Leverage automation know-how
The eBook does not stop there; it recommends ways of doing this. It talks of investing in simple platforms, standardizing, minimizing custom work, reusing components and so on.
Immediately after these suggestions is a section featuring a team of engineers accompanied by a video. The video is about the CNC machining case study for Whippany.
The eBook continues with a diagrammatic representation of the process. The parameters on the axes are time and perception of cobot.
The next section provides tips for starting the process. The first of these is to stick to simplicity, by aiming for the minimum viable cell. This simplicity should be maintained until the robot is up and running.
Sometimes it can be difficult to draw a line between what is simple or difficult to maintain, so there's a guideline. On tasks, whereas picking and placing parts is considered easy, precision assembly is deemed difficult. You will also find a classification of part presentation, programming and integration, in a similar manner.
When it comes to the cost aspect of the project, this eBook suggests a Learning on Investment (LOI) approach as opposed to Return on Investment (ROI) calculations.
Next, the eBook reiterates the need to enhance safety for robots, just as for other “dangerous” tools on the plant floor.
If the changes the world is experiencing every passing day is anything to go by, there is a need to involve youth and innovation in the shift toward lean robotics. To cement this point, the eBook features a 30-year old photo of Robotiq CEO Samuel Bouchard followed by a contrasting picture of today's youngsters in front of a robot.
Finally, you will find a checklist of the tips you need for a successful first SME Cobot project. In case you have not gone through the eBook yet, get a copy and tell us what you think. Do not forget to check out the overview of the Universal Robots and customer reviews at the end of the eBook.