An interlink is required for a production process in the manufacture of titanium screws. Five lathes need to be interlinked with two thread whirling machines. Different screw types need to be processed. The lathes have a different cycle time than the thread whirling machines. The system needs to compensate for differing output quantities. The screws are transported in special baskets made from perforated VA steel sheets. The following functions are required for the baskets: lifting/lowering, guided conveying, positioning, gripping, tipping and buffering. The system must be fully automated and be able to operate autonomously for at least one shift. The controller must adapt to the upstream and downstream processes. In total, the system runs in three-shift operation with a cycle time of 30 minutes at the lathes for each basket. The system must remain accessible for maintenance work, and it must incorporate existing machines and spatial constraints. The process takes place in the production area, so there are no special sanitation requirements.
Transport system consisting of multiple belt conveyors as the main conveyor line, with five vertical lifting units at the lathes, three-axis handling with a buffer station and transfer to the thread whirling machines. Because of the long cycle time at the lathes, a separate return mechanism is not necessary: The entire system can run in reverse, allowing it to both process full baskets and return empty baskets. The main conveyor line is installed at a height of about 2500 mm and runs above other machines for a distance of about 15 metres, thereby keeping passages clear. All of the system’s hazard areas are enclosed by guarding. The screw baskets are equipped with RFID chips. A higher-level controller records the entire order management process and includes an interface to the ERP system. This allows the system to uniquely assign the different screw types.
Benefit to the customer