For manufacturers seeking to achieve production automation with robotic arms, how to achieve collaborative operation between robots and peripheral automation equipment will be a more crucial task than incorporating robots into their production lines, and the task can be best handled through localized system integration service from robot suppliers or their cooperative partners, according to industry experts.
YD Kuo, chairman of LNC Technology, an affiliate of industrial PC and automation solution specialist Advantech, said robot suppliers had better provide localized system integration services to help Taiwan customers solve related operating problems. Kuo said his company once helped a local company engaged in plastic injection molding business smoothen the operation of its robotic arms by installing image sensors on the robots, within just one week after getting a consent from the supplier of robots. He said the sensors can help the robots perform more accurate and precision object-grabbing operations.
Kuo continued that dedicated to developing diverse automation control systems including those for lathes, milling machines, grinding machines, and plastics injection molding machines, LNC has also helped a local maker of bicycle parts address the frequent collisions between robot arms and lathes seen on the production lines due to poor coordination.
Peter Peng, director of Robotics Automation Business Department of Industrial Automation Business Goup at Delta Electronics, also said that most manufacturers in Taiwan usually demand robotics automation solutions that can cater to their production process, guarantee fast investment returns and boast a long life cycle to support follow-up changes.
But the real engineering task based on customer requirements is not easy to do, Peng said, adding that a communication platform between robot suppliers and customers should therefore be established first with the support of related software programs, so that both sides can simulate equipment, systems and production flows on an experimental basis and then work out the optimal robotics automation solutions.