Stanley Engineered Fastening has deployed Universal Robots’ cobots to automate quality inspection at its Warrington facility.
Some 15 UR3e cobots feature in cells for Breakstem autonomous manufacture. The new cells fully integrate four previously independent processes. The partnership said this has improved productivity and conditions for machine operators by eliminating 5.5 million pounds of manual handling per year.
Additionally, the use of this technology has reduced product costs by approximately 10% and shortened lead times by up to 70%.
Vitalij Rodnov, advanced manufacturing engineer at Stanley Engineered Fastening, said:“We needed to increase throughput and productivity in order to meet demand across our fastener product range. Freeing up our machine operators from this repetitive task allows them to add more value elsewhere in the process, delivering better profitability and shorter lead times.”
During the manufacturing process a UR3e cobot randomly selects a component for batch sampling and performs a pre-programmed quality inspection. This involves degreasing, drying, deburring and feature inspection through a digital micrometre.
The cobot then places the part in a Stanley Smart Gun to record the break load of the components as part of an automated destructive test.
“Stanley Engineered Fastening is a great example of a company smartly using collaborative automation to make its business more successful and resilient”, added Mark Gray, country manager, UK & Ireland at Universal Robots.
“Our cobots are helping transform so many organisations whose potential would otherwise be constrained by labour shortages, limited production space or rising production costs.”