Lockheed Martin using robot painting simulation

Jul 29, 2013

Painting robots have been doing a fantastic job of completing painting jobs for the automotive industry. Paint simulators on industrial robot lines are doing an even greater job in helping with the painting process. This is evidence in the fact that Lockheed martin began automating their paint process by painting the F-35 Lightning II jets.


Paint­ing automa­tion has been in place for many years in the auto­mo­tive indus­try. With the intro­duc­tion of robot paint sim­u­la­tors, even more indus­tries are begin­ning to use paint­ing automa­tion, includ­ing the defense industry.

Defense con­trac­tor Lock­heed Mar­tin began automat­ing their paint­ing process­es in 2011, when they need­ed a faster way to paint their F‑35 Light­ning II jets in Raleigh, NC, accord­ing to assem​bly​mag​.com. Many man­u­fac­tur­ers are always look­ing to improve the effi­cien­cy of their process­es, and Lock­heed Mar­tin was one of those manufacturers.

Even though the defense con­trac­tor under­stood the ben­e­fits of paint­ing automa­tion like the increase of speed and accu­ra­cy, while also increas­ing the health lev­el of work­ers in their fac­to­ry, it was the robot paint­ing sim­u­la­tor that helped them to auto­mate their system.

A robot­ic paint sim­u­la­tor is a com­put­er pro­gram that sim­u­lates the paint­ing process from start to fin­ish, show­ing man­u­fac­tur­ers exact­ly how the robot will move and inter­act with its envi­ron­ment and the things around it. This saves mon­ey for man­u­fac­tur­ers because the robot inte­gra­tor doesn’t have to build a mock-up of the sys­tem pri­or to pre­sent­ing it to the manufacturer.

Lock­heed Mar­tin used this paint­ing robot sim­u­la­tor to make sure that all of their robots were placed in pre­cise posi­tions to avoid any col­li­sions dur­ing oper­a­tion. It also helped Mar­tin con­fig­ure the two dif­fer­ent auto­mat­ed sys­tems they use. There is a three-robot sys­tem that paints the aircraft’s exte­ri­or, and anoth­er two robot sys­tem for the interior.

The process of robot­ic paint­ing sim­u­la­tion allows man­u­fac­tur­ers to vir­tu­al­ly define, plan, cre­ate and mon­i­tor the pro­duc­tion and assem­bly process­es that involve paint, the arti­cle stat­ed. By using this soft­ware, the com­pa­ny is able to max­i­mize pro­duc­tion effi­cien­cy, low­er costs and improve quality.

For more infor­ma­tion on robot­ic paint­ing sim­u­la­tors, con­tact Robots​.com online or at 8777626881.

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