Which companies can use a robotic cell?
There are four key points that can help you understand if your company can integrate a robotic cell to improve specific production flows and increase production rates. They concern the tasks to be performed by the industrial robot located in the cell, the sector in which your company operates, the cost-benefit ratio for a ROI calculation and the type of environment in which it will be installed.
In our experience, in 95% of the cases these questions are followed by a concrete project. Robot cells can be installed in many contexts and the benefits they bring are always very high. But let's look in detail at the four key factors to understand which companies can use robot cells.
1. THE OPERATIONS PERFORMED BY INDUSTRIAL ROBOTS
Robotic cells are used to automate many types of operations. Here are the most important ones:
- Object handling (e.g. palletizing, loading-unloading operations, etc.): the most frequent activity performed by robots is pick & place. This type of activity is not linked to a specific industrial sector, and is often involved at the start and end of automated lines.
- Sorting: this is the ideal application for companies that have a variety of products to separate. Items can be randomly loaded into hoppers and the robot selects and/or sorts them according to shape, color, size, weight, etc. thanks to the vision system, which is integrated in the robotic cell.
- Assembling: there are several assembling and mounting operations that are brilliantly carried out by robots, sometimes even in direct interaction with human workers (collaborative robots).
- Deburring: the robot located inside the cell picks up incoming workpieces and, with the help of a grinder integrated in the cell, removes sharp edges, residues caused by cutting operations.
- Painting: robotized cells change according to the dimensions and shapes of the parts to be painted, while maintaining its strong points: compactness, flexibility and versatility.
- Finishing and polishing: as well as object handling, polishing also finds a valuable help in robotics. It is particularly important in the goldsmith and jewelry industry. Also, it requires precision, attention, and consistency. Inside a proper environment, the robot picks up the object and places it under the brushes for the polishing operation, having care to apply a modular force in opposition to the buffing brushes.
- Welding (arc welding, spot welding, etc.): depending on the type of welding to be carried out, robot cells take on different shapes while maintaining their strengths: compactness, flexibility and versatility.
- CNC machine tending: in this case robots manage loading/unloading operations of objects of varying dimensions inside a computer numerical control machine (lathe or milling machine).
In addition, robotic cells are very flexible: by changing the type of format to be processed, all you will have to do is reprogram the robot(s) and the machines inside the cell without making major structural changes. In case of extreme production changes, they can also be reconverted.
So, our customers have an extremely versatile tool that can adapt to any change.
2. WHERE ROBOT CELLS MAKE A DIFFERENCE
All the operations briefly described above can be found in many sectors, including:
- Fashion (various types of accessories for leather goods and clothing)
- Automotive (car components)
- Aeronautics and aerospace industry
- Medical and pharmaceutical industry
- Food industry
- Foundry, iron and steel industry
- Palletizing and logistics
- Leather goods industry
- Jewelry, goldsmithing and costume jewelry
- Furniture and fixtures
- Plastics sector
- Mechanical engineering industry
- Plumbing and heating sector
Generally speaking, the use of robotic industrial automation solutions is particularly recommended in hostile and heavy duty work environments, where the operator's safety is often put to the test and where humans are subjected to repetitive and alienating tasks.
Even though we have made a list of key sectors for industrial robotics, we like to think that the idea and need to have a robot in the company comes even before its intended use. Installing a robotic cell means wanting to change pace and embrace a new approach to work.
3. THE COST-BENEFIT ANALYSIS
The purchase of a robotic can be a significant cost, which for small-to-medium size companies can represent, in some cases, a challenging investment.
However, if we look at the enormous advantages that robotic cells can bring to production in terms of quality and quantity and go beyond the initial expenditure, with a quick calculation we realize that it is possible to have a Return on Investment in a period of time of only one year, or even less.
In fact, we have observed that robot cells can work more hours in a weekend than an operator on five working days a week when producing medium-easy items (e.g. for the fashion accessories sector). The accounts are soon done!
Moreover, unlike humans, robots do not experience tiredness, nor holidays, nor weekends. They are therefore able to work at full capacity - even for days -, keeping the quality of products constant over time.
A robot cell is definitely a guarantee of fast and secure earnings. Therefore, it is an affordable investment for all companies, even small and medium-sized ones.
4. IS YOUR COMPANY READY TO HOST A ROBOTIC CELL?
Of course, it is. Let us answer this question for you, because our goal has always been to create automations that are suitable for all company production contexts.
It is no coincidence that Tera Automation robot cells save both consumptions and space. The standard model is compact and can be installed even in small companies with limited production space.
The energy factor is also very important. In fact, robotic cells require only a few kW of energy and need a 230 V power supply.
But there is always one last doubt that always creeps into the minds of entrepreneurs: how hard will it be to use the robot? Therefore, they should not be perceived as complex tools that can only be operated by experts in the field.
In fact, our robotic technologies are always user-friendly. The operators in charge of monitoring the cell only need initial training to learn the main controls. This way they will be able to give basic instructions to the robot. In any case, the customer is never alone because we offer a 24/7 assistance system that can be carried out both remotely (T-E.A.M support) and on site.