Robopod® Case Study
Reconfigurable Robot Welding Interior Trim Mouldings
The Client’s Challenge
A major automotive component supplier came to Robopod® Ltd to provide equipment to ultrasonically weld interior trim mouldings for automotive A-Pillar components.
The Client’s Specific Needs
The purpose of the machine was to weld a structural carrier to the back of an interior trim moulding across a number of variants while providing:
- Reliable strength
- Repeatable process
- No marking on visible surface of the moulding
Additionally, the customer needed to poke-yoke check components when loading to the machine. This was to ensure all components are present when delivered to the car production line.
The components were designed with two styles of weld, so the machine had to have twin ultrasonic heads to make two stake forms.
The ultrasonic welding process offers reliable, repeatable joining of thermoplastics by using a high frequency vibration to melt features on the moulding, this avoids the need for glues, screws or other fixing and is a process that can be completed in less than 2s.
The Robopod® Solution
After detailed consideration of the client’s needs Mechatronic selected an existing Robopod® system which is available off-the -shelf as a standard design.
Robopod® offers a plug-and-play robotic solution which can be fitted with different end of arm tooling for a range of processes. The Robopod® solution comes in 3 sizes all provided with control & safety fully integrated as standard.
Robopod® engineers were able to easily adapt the robot by adding twin weld heads to the standard 6 axis robot arm. This allowed the weld points to be quickly and easily programmed making the commissioning time of the machine simpler and quicker.
By having change nests with coding the Robopod® machine was able to recognise which parts were to be processed and select the appropriate robot routine.
Components loaded to the machine were poke-yoke checked using a vision inspection system. This verifies that all the child parts are present before ultrasonically welding with the robot arm.