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Friday, January 14 2022

Choosing the Right Automation for your Operations

CARMEL,  – 

As automation becomes more cost-effective, small to medium-sized manufacturers are realizing the benefits of finding the right automated technology solution for their plant operations. Offerings for advanced technologies are endless so we’ve identified some of the most common types of solutions from which manufacturers are gaining the most benefit. Join us as we explore three popular automation options and examine their key features, the best utilization, and how they may be integrated together.

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Industrial Automation
Improves Efficiencies and Reduces Strain on Labor Forces

Off-the-shelf and custom-built automation equipment can provide a wealth of opportunities to improve efficiencies and more effectively utilize existing labor forces. By automating hard-to-perform or repetitive motion operations, employers are able to create more consistent products, as well as reduce strain on employees. Telamon Robotics specializes in helping to design, build, prove-out, and install custom industrial automation equipment for clients through their partnership with Vention. Such devices are capable of being paired with existing production equipment or integrated with industrial robots and cobots to increase overall capabilities and provide greater flexibility for product and process improvements.

Industrial Robotics
A Non-Stop Option to Perform Dangerous Tasks

Industrial robotics have been used for decades in manufacturing, offering the ability to move large or heavy items, perform complicated or dangerous manufacturing / assembly operations, and increase production rates. These devices come in a wide range of sizes, lift capability, and operational performance and are provided by a number of well-known and respected manufacturers. The downside to these devices can include the amount of required space and safety equipment (e.g. light curtains and safety cages) to reduce robot / employee interactions. Due to the general size and payload ability for many of these devices, it is not advisable to have employees located in the immediate vicinity, as the possibility for injury can occur. Nonetheless, when employed correctly, these devices can operate non-stop to help your operations.

Cobots
A Solution that Assists and Works Alongside Employees

For areas where employees cannot be removed from the production area, or when large payloads (e.g. <35 lbs) are not required, collaborative robots (Cobots) provide a very unique opportunity to manufacturers. Cobots are designed such that they do not require the same safety requirements of industrial robots and have the ability to work directly adjacent to employees. These devices have built-in sensors for detecting and minimizing impact / injury, unlike their larger cousins. They are easy to install and have been designed such that their programming and deployment can be completed with just a couple of days of training. With the wide array of end-of-arm tooling available from providers such as On-Robot, cobots can be uniquely tailored to fit your product and production requirements.

Don’t let the vastness of automation solutions stop you from pursuing the perfect solution for your operations. Our team of experts can assist you as you explore solutions in industrial automation, robotics, or cobots. Interested in checking out a cobot in action? The DMTC has onsite cobots where you will have the opportunity to directly interact with one of our many cobot stations.  Contact us at dmtc@purdue.edu for more information.

Writer: Craig Zehrung, 765-496-3680, czehrung@purdue.edu

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