New robot tending systems on display.Universal Robots is building a rapidly expanding network of Certified System Integrators (CSIs); many CSIs offer not only help with UR cobot deployment but also develop turnkey robot tending systems to address parts presentation and robot-machine communication.
Alex Webster, owner of UR CSI SDMS Robotics, has helped machine shops of all kinds integrate UR cobots. “This is the essential technology that was needed to bring robots into widespread use for machine tending,” he says, calling Universal Robots “the most important step forward in machine shop automation since the advent of CNC, the pallet changer, and the bar feeder.” At the Expo, SDMS will introduce the SDMS Machine Tending System consisting of the UR10e cobot arm, SDMS’ robot interface system, and specially-designed robot mount.
Often, manufacturers just need help to get started, whereafter they can succeed with cobot automation by becoming autonomous and do DIY projects. That is the goal for UR CSI Revtech Systems, launching the new CNC Loader Revflex at the Expo. “We strive to share our knowledge with customers so they require us less and less throughout their other projects,” says Catherine Bernier, application engineer at Revtech Systems, who will present the keynote "How Robotics Done Right Can Change Your Business."
Brian Knopp, general manager of UR CSI ProCobots, emphasizes that buying a standardized machine tending system eliminates the mystery and misery manufacturers face when trying to navigate a fragmented market of cobot products and accessories. “When someone wants a fishing boat, they go buy one. They don’t buy the motor and then build the boat themselves,” says the general manager of ProCobots, that will be showcasing the company’s practical CNC machine automation solutions with UR cobots.
When Universal Robots released the e-series line of cobots featuring repeatability down to 30 microns, Troy Ojalehto, owner of UR CSI Rapid Design Solutions, was excited. “When you’re doing multi-op precision machining, the accuracy requirements go way up,” he says. “Universal Robots’ repeatability really competes in the same space as traditional industrial robots but with all the safety and flexibility that cobots offer.” Rapid Design Solutions’ Expo booth will focus on how small to medium size machine shops can efficiently automate even low-run production with UR cobots without major process overhaul.