In today’s world robots are quite simple devices. Some of the simple tasks that our bodies execute such as picking up something are a tad difficult for robots. The human brain is capable of processing thousands of bits of data in a split second so that the action of picking up something does happen.
Robots unlike humans are not born but rather built. They are forged by industrial robot manufacturers from common materials. This is not the case for robots used in clean room applications such as space exploration programs. These utilize special materials such as carbon fiber and titanium.
Regular robotic arms will be forged using cast iron, aluminum or steel. Moving robots will be fitted with rubber tires for grip on the floor and silent mobility. Exposed areas of the robot are covered with shields made of neoprene. Controllers on the other hand are housed in steel electrical enclosures close to the robots working space.
Steps of the manufacturing process
This will be an in-depth review of the various steps that are taken during the manufacturing process. These processes include; design, fabrication, assembly, wiring to the controller and installation
The design phase is where every robot begins. Various factors will have to be put in consideration during this phase: length of reach, speed of operation, path of travel, human involvement, and hazardous materials involved among others.
Most manufacturers have a basic design that is a base for all other designs that will stem from modifications on the basic design in order to meet the requirements. Robots like any other forged item cannot do something they were not built to do. They are most effective when handled by qualified technicians and the processes and overall system are well thought out.
Fabrication of the various parts: supports, arms, columns and the base occurs once design is completed. The base is stout to stop the robot from tipping over. It is forged by welding or casting.
Parts that merge with the rest of the robot are machined with attention to detail to ensure that they are a custom fit. Likewise the arms are forged to fit perfectly to the end product.
An industrial robot can comprise of over 2000 independent fragments that require assembling. Assembly is carried out by a significant number of procured items such as controllers, wiring, bearings, hydraulic cylinders and electric motors. The base is the foundation of assembly of parts into the robot until its ready for testing.
To kick start the assembly procedure mobile robots have axles, motors, wheels and batteries mounted. Standstill robots do not necessitate these parts. The mobile columns are sub forged with their respective drive motors and encased to the base.
Wiring to the controller
As and when the mechanical assembly has been finished the plumbing and wiring can be completed. All the electrical parts and sensors should have powered wiring and convey information back to the computer. At times the naked space on arms provides for an ideal location to mount controllers.
If a robot is not mobile the controller should be fixed at a distance and is linked to the robot by a cable. Once assembly is completed the arms are at times encased with shields to shelter them from welding marks, paints and corrosive materials as well
This is carried out at the client’s place. Immobile robots will be fastened to the ground using bolts whereas mobile robotswill have wiring etched into the ground for smooth movement from task to task.
Some designs incorporate video modules. Immobile robots should be secured in a room or fence so that unsuspecting individuals do not come into contact with them and get injured. The manufacturer will then relay maintenance and operation knowhow to the client.
To sum it all up robotics is one of the most rapid developing areas in the machine market. That said advancement in technology makes old machines obsolete. However, the Japanese are building machines capable of learning and hence do not become obsolete in the near future.