ISMR June 2022 - Page 37

KUKA cell4 _ arc

The KUKA MIG / MAG robot cell is designed to be compact and configurable for arc welding applications . Depending upon component size and production volume , the automated arc welding cell is equipped with manual or automatic positioners for cycle time parallel loading and unloading during the welding process and synchronisation with the robot movement . Using software such as KUKA . web HMI and KUKA . ArcTech , the welding application can be programmed and operated . The KUKA ready2 _ pilot package and KUKA . Sim for simulation and offline programming are designed to simplify commissioning .
Two different cell families are offered , based on an individual base frame on which the complete cell is mounted .
“ Pre-assembled and ready to use , these MIG / MAG cells are quickly available and can be individually configured using versatile , modular , standard packages and options . Whether welding steel or aluminium , KUKA cell4 _ arc can be flexibly adapted to production volumes and welding processes ,” commented KUKA .
“ Commissioning is rapid , with short delivery and assembly times . The cells can be easily integrated with its technology packages for easy set-up , programming and operation . In addition , KUKA offers a comprehensive digital service , with web access to operational data and freely configurable dashboards , with the option of remote maintenance .
An example of STELA ’ s slat conveyor dryer .
Left : Andreas Utz , Production Manager for Fan Construction , STELA .
Right : Thomas Laxhuber , CEO , STELA .
cell , the next one is already rotating into the cell , having previously been screwed in place on the other side by Andreas Utz .
“ Work in progress ,” adds Utz , with a smile . “ Manual welding takes about a day . With the robot cell , we ’ re in the fast lane of production now in terms of
KUKA cell4 _ arc welding cell . both time and quality . This is because the seams are welded so perfectly over a short space of time and in a manner
A STELA air heater . that would be impossible by hand . Now we are welding in quantities we never dreamed possible and have been able , once more , to manage the sheer volume of orders .”
A customised solution
The path to facilitating work in the welding shop in this manner was less straightforward than operating the cell , remembered Sven Pietsch , STELA ’ s purchasing manager who , along with CEO Thomas Laxhuber , originally set out to search for a welding cell .
“ We were under pressure ,” Pietsch recalled . “ The order books were full and , at the same time , it was becoming increasingly difficult to find suitable skilled workers for the demanding , but also comparatively monotonous , welding work .”
At various trade shows , the
Bavarian-based company sought appropriate solutions for welding .
“ As an SME , [ some ] people thought we were too insignificant ,” said Sven Pietsch with a grin . “ That is , until we met the KUKA experts at the EUROBLECH exhibition in Hanover . There , we very quickly began discussing a customised solution to weld our large components .”
KUKA ’ s TechCentre for welding dived deeply into STELA ’ s production processes , configuring the tailored cell4 _ arc robot cell to weld fans


from various available standard modules and providing hardware and software for the welding application .
A new approach
The cell4 _ arc for STELA also represents a new approach for KUKA using customised , modular automation steps .
“ Together with our customers , we can leverage our KUKA cell4 _ production concept to combine optimally coordinated components and proven standard equipment from arc welding to create solutions for automated welding in each case . With the right application software , the handling and programming of the welding parameters are outstandingly easy and help to meet the highest production requirements ,” said Mathias Klaus , who is responsible for solution sales modular cell business at KUKA . “ The robot cell that welds fans at STELA is impressive evidence of this .”
Thomas Laxhuber , STELA ’ s CEO , has high hopes for the robotic welding technology at STELA .
“ For almost 100 years , it has been part of STELA ’ s DNA to be guided by quality and always be one step ahead in terms of technology . Thanks to this automation for WATCH welding fans , we can build on this in the future ,” he concluded . n VIDEO
EDITOR ’ S NOTE For further details , see :
www . stela . de / en
www . kuka . com
ISMR June 2022 | sheetmetalplus . com | 37