Integration of Dispensing Robots

Jul 9, 2013

Automating a dispensing process will increase productivity and reliability on your production line. Choosing the correct robot is important such as considering the number of axes, the type of process flow, speed, and size.

Dispensing robots

When a dis­pens­ing process is auto­mat­ed, pro­duc­tiv­i­ty and reli­a­bil­i­ty will increase. Both batch and in-line flow process­es can be pro­grammed with auto­mat­ed dis­pense sys­tems using either a bench­top or SCARA robot. How­ev­er, robots must be imple­ment­ed cor­rect­ly for man­u­fac­tur­ers to watch their robots reach their full poten­tial. As a robot is inte­grat­ed into a dis­pens­ing line, regard­less of whether the robot­ic dis­pens­ing is being imple­ment­ed into an exist­ing or brand new line, man­u­al work­er tasks must be trans­lat­ed into an auto­mat­ed set­ting. The man­u­fac­tur­er needs to deter­mine what type of dis­penser he will use and the type of robot that will con­trol the dispensing.

Since impre­cise shot size and excess flow are prob­lems relat­ed to a man­u­al or semi-auto­mat­ed dis­penser, man­u­fac­tur­ers can use pre­ci­sion diaphragm or pos­i­tive-dis­place­ment valves to con­trol dis­pens­ing instead. Diaphragm valves in par­tic­u­lar are com­pat­i­ble with robot­ic appli­ca­tions due to pre­cise shut­off fea­tures. Pos­i­tive dis­place­ment sys­tems are typ­i­cal­ly more expen­sive but guar­an­tee con­sis­tent shot volumes.

To deter­mine which type of robot should be used for the auto­mat­ed dis­pens­ing process, the man­u­fac­tur­er should con­sid­er the num­ber of axes, the type of process flow, speed, bud­get, part place­ment and size.

For appli­ca­tions like med­ical tube bond­ing or nee­dle assem­blies that require dis­pens­ing a sin­gle dot onto a part, a one-axis robot might be ide­al. The robot locates to the same dis­pense posi­tion each time. For dis­pens­ing adhe­sive or tack­ing, a robot with two axes that moves up and down and side to side increas­es speed and accu­ra­cy in these basic straight pat­terns. A three-axis robot adds the front to back motion. Gner­al­ly, most assem­blies will require a three-axis sys­tem. Adding four, five, or six axes give the robot capa­bil­i­ty for a joint­ed arm and more rotation. 

With all of these options, the man­u­fac­tur­er should deter­mine how many axes will best suit the oper­a­tion, bear­ing in mind the price and chal­lenge of pro­gram­ming increas­es with each added axis. To deter­mine the size of robot nec­es­sary, the num­ber of parts that can fit in the work enve­lope while mak­ing sure the pay­load spec­i­fi­ca­tions of the tool head are not sur­passed should be deduced.

Once the dis­pens­ing sys­tem has been assem­bled, pro­gram­ming the robot is the last task to occur. Cre­at­ing an effi­cient dis­pens­ing path might be a chal­lenge, so atten­tion should be paid to the train­ing from the equip­ment manufacturer. 

Robots​.com can help you pick the right dis­pens­ing robot for your busi­ness. We have both new and recon­di­tioned robots that can be used for this appli­ca­tion to give our cus­tomers the most options pos­si­ble. If you would like to talk to one of our sales reps, con­tact us here or call 8777626881.

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