1) Introduction to Robotics and Weldment
What is Welding?
Welding is the process of fabrication that involves the joining of materials. Usually, these materials are metal thermoplastics. The way that these materials are joined is by using high heat to melt the parts together all while allowing them to cool down thus causing fusion.
There are plenty of energy sources that are used for weldings such as gas flame, electric arc, electron beam, laser, and even ultrasound. The Welds can be geometrically prepared in various different ways such as the following five basic types:
- The butt joint
- The lap joint
- The corner joint
- The edge joint
- The T joint
what are robots
A robot is simply a machine that is programmable with the aid of a computer. It is capable of carrying out complex tasks and actions automatically. Some robots can be guided by an external guide (like a remote for example) So what is a robotic arm? A robotic arm is simply a mechanical arm that is programmable and could either have its own system or could be attached to another robot forming a complex system. There are different types of robotic arms such as a Cartesian robot, commonly known as Gantry robot, Cylindrical robot, spherical also known as the polar robot and many more. Robots and robotic arms can be used in various different fields and domains such as the medical field, military applications, etc. However, they are also widely used in the industrial and manufacturing field such as welding.
Robots that are used in welding are called welding robots.
2) Robots used for welding
What are welding robots?
As stated before, welding robots are simply mechanical arms that are used in order to weld parts.
The way that these machines perform the welding is by automatically performing the weld and handle the part; therefore, the welding process is completely automated. In order to perform the welding process automatically, the robot uses a technology called signature image processing. Using this technology helps the robot to optimize the welds.
History of robots being used in welding
The welding industry is an ever-growing field, and this has encouraged many engineers and developers all around the world to come up with better solutions that would both fasten and ease the welding process. Historically, in 1962 the very first welding robot was used in General motors factory in order to spot weld in an assembly line. However, it was only in the 1980s that the implementation of welding robots became popular thanks to the growing implementation of this technology in other car manufacturing companies. The huge benefits that these car manufacturing companies gained over the past years led to other manufacturing companies to implement the welding robots.
3) Benefits and disadvantages of using Robots for welding
Pros of using robotic arms for welding
Using welding robotic arms has a lot of advantages such as:
- Better Quality: Obviously, using welding robots will result in a high quality and precise weld. On top of that, the end result is almost always consistent.
- Productivity: Robots do help with the improvement of productivity thanks to their ability for doing complicated tasks of welds without any hesitation or getting tired and therefore improving productivity.
- Safety: Welding can be sometimes dangerous for the workers and engineers involved; however, by using robots, it is possible to automatically eliminate the risk of inhaling hazardous chemicals and gas.
Cons of using robotic arms for welding
Probably the most common and obvious drawback of using welding robots is the price as it can be costly to install robots to do the welding and even more expensive to maintain and repair.
In conclusion, welding is an extremely important and growing sector of the manufacturing field this caused engineers all over the world to come up with better ways of performing the weld, they started implementing welding robots which caused car manufacturing companies to gain a huge upper hand on other companies that lack robots and still use human workers.