ABB Robotic

ABB showcases solutions for flexible production

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At this year’s automatica sprint, which will be held from 22nd to 24th June 2021 as an entirely virtual event, ABB will present a broad range of robotics and digitalization solutions designed to support companies of all sizes and sectors in driving forward automation and boosting flexibility of their production, allowing them to respond more quickly to new trends.

“Characterized by the pandemic, the past months have shown more than clearly how important it is for companies to be able to produce with a high degree of customization and flexibility. Here, robotics and automation are increasingly gaining momentum. Particularly small and medium-size companies and businesses in health care, consumer goods, logistics and food and beverage sector are increasingly exploiting the potential of robotic automation,” explains Jörg Reger, Head of ABB Robotics & Discrete Automation in Germany. “With our new generation of collaborative robots, which are easy to install and operate, we pave the way to robotics for these companies while our digital solutions provide enhanced transparency and productivity.”

With the collaborative robots (cobots) GoFaTM and SWIFTITM and the YuMi® family ABB offers the most diverse cobot portfolio on the market. All cobots feature different payload and reach options for various tasks from machine tending and assembly to testing and packaging in manufacturing plants, laboratories, logistics hubs, workshops and small production facilities. Thanks to advanced safety systems, they support all types of human-robot collaboration. They are intuitive to operate and can be used within minutes of installation with no specialized training required – providing even low-automation industries with the possibility to reap the benefits of automation.

To further facilitate robot deployment for users, ABB offers an extensive range of digital tools and services, which will also be showcased at the virtual automatica sprint. One core element is the offline programming tool RobotStudio®, which allows a complete robot system to be created, simulated and tested in a 3D environment without having to interrupt the actual production line. This reduces project times and helps to optimize cell design before building the physical counterpart. In February, RobotStudio was upgraded with a new function to calculate robot braking distances with millimetric precision. This new feature improves operator safety and enables space savings in cell design of up to 25 percent.

Another key element of the ABB RobotStudio software is the AR (Augmented Reality) Viewer that can be used to test each cell model for its intended purpose. It provides a visual impression of the size and scale of a robot or robot cell, enabling users to see if and how it can be fitted into an existing production plant. Using a smartphone or tablet, the model can be embedded into the real-life production environment, scaled and viewed from different angles.

Specially designed for vision-guided picking and packaging applications, the third generation of ABB’s market-leading PickMaster software will also be presented. Based on the digital twin principle, the software reduces commissioning and changeover times to a fraction to significantly increase overall plant efficiency.

With its new condition-based maintenance (CBM) service, ABB enables robot users to set up a preventive maintenance plan for individual robots or entire robot fleets based on real-time operating data in order to maximize productivity and minimize downtimes. This helps users to better plan their budgets and make sure that the required resources are available to carry out any necessary work.

“Customer needs are becoming increasingly diverse, digitalization is progressing rapidly, and even after the Covid pandemic there will still be much uncertainty in the market. With a winning combination of collaborative robots, smart and powerful software solutions, and an international support network we provide the foundation for businesses to optimally implement their individual automation scenarios,” Jörg Reger sums up.

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