Automated Bending Advantages

In the bending arena, the association of robots and software solutions is delivering never-before-seen gains when it comes to production efficiency. Long at the forefront of automated bending technology, Amada can now offer three new fully automated bending cells.

Each system demonstrates that the use of robots provides big advantages in manufacturing flexibility as well as dramatic time savings, even when processing small batches.

The integration of manufacturing technologies is an industry trend being driven by a market desire for greater efficiency. With this in mind, the ability to combine multiple processes with a single system solution is a concept that Amada is exploiting to full effect with its latest automated bending systems.

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In the bending arena, the association of robots and software solutions is delivering never-before-seen gains when it comes to efficiency. For instance, at the recent EuroBLECH 2014 exhibition, Amada demonstrated three fully automated bending cells, where the use of robots could be seen to bring about enormous advantages in flexibility, along with dramatic time savings, even when processing small batches.

The first of these, which is designed for small component bending, is the Amada EG6013AR, a system that features a 1300 mm, 600 kN servo-electric press brake mounted by a front-traversing six-axis robot. The compact cell layout is optimised for system simplification and space reduction, while the dedicated robot features a new gripper design for handling small and complex parts. Both workpiece manipulation and tool changing are facilitated by the same robot. Components measuring up to 300 x 300 mm, and weighing up to 1.6 kg can be accommodated.

In essence, the EG6013AR represents an extremely flexible robotic bending system with tactile sensor systems in the back-gauge. These are used to detect the position of the workpiece in both the X and Y directions prior to bending and initiate corrective measures if departures from tolerances are identified.

Other benefits of this innovative system include a new servo drive system for higher performance and lower power consumption, and the use of Amada’s new AMNC3i control. Regarding the latter, easy operation is assured, particularly in combination with Amada’s dedicated CAM system, where the automatic generation of robotic motion negates any requirement for ‘teach’ routines.

Loading can be performed from different positions when using the EG6013AR. This means there is considerable capacity for raw materials. At the same time, several unloading options are available. Completed workpieces are stacked by the robot or, if this is not possible, placed in boxes or on a synchronised conveyor belt.

Another automated bending cell offered by Amada, this time for larger parts, is the HG1003ARs. The cell features a HG1003ATC (auto tool change) servo-hydraulic press brake, which for short run, high mix production can be used by an operator in manual mode, or by a HG robot mounted on a separate track for higher volumes.

Able to handle sheets measuring up to 1000 x 800 mm, and up to 6 mm thick, the HG1003ARs is all about automation. For instance, the robot itself features automatic gripper change functionality, while angle adjustment and high accuracy positioning are also fully automated.

Using the HG1003ARs, parts can be loaded and unloaded at different positions as required – an integrated LD camera system is deployed to avoid positioning errors when picking up and loading the sheets. The camera system records the precise position of the workpieces, which may have been pushed together on the stack, and passes this information to the robot. Even the tiniest discrepancies can be compensated.

The third automated bending cell is Amada’s HG1303Rm. Based on an Amada HG1303 press brake, the cell features an innovative bending system (special gripper and motorised repositioning device) for long parts – sheets up to 2500 mm can be accommodated by the HG robot.

Whatever the bending requirement, Amada has an automated cellular format designed to match even the most challenging of applications. No longer is there any need to rely on manual operation – in a world of integrated manufacturing technologies, the future of sheet metal bending is automated.

Source Amada