Robots Critical to Survival of Alternative Energy Industry

Apr 17, 2011

Industrial robots are helping to solve difficult alternative energy solutions with their flexibility, speeds, and versatility. For instance, solar panel manufacturers increasingly rely on robots for a host of material handling applications as they need precision-driven assembly and heavy palletizing needs. Also, robotic vision eliminates the need for complex fixturing and helps to assist with inspection and quality control jobs.


As alter­na­tive meth­ods of pro­duc­ing ener­gy become increas­ing­ly sought-after, pro­duc­tion must keep pace. For alter­na­tive ener­gy indus­tries to sur­vive and thrive, they must increase their reliance on the indus­tri­al robot. The grow­ing demand in alter­na­tive ener­gy sources after the recent nuclear cat­a­stro­phe in Japan will push robot instal­la­tions, e.g. the pro­duc­tion of solar cells etc.” — Inter­na­tion­al Fed­er­a­tion of Robot­ics (www​.ifr​.org)

Robots and Solar Energy

Indus­tri­al robots effec­tive­ly accom­mo­date the rapid (and con­stant) evo­lu­tion of solar ener­gy tech­nol­o­gy. Sim­u­la­tion soft­ware makes it pos­si­ble for solar ener­gy sys­tem com­pa­nies to change prod­ucts and process­es quick­ly and seamlessly. 

Solar pan­el man­u­fac­tur­ers increas­ing­ly rely on robots for a host of mate­r­i­al han­dling appli­ca­tions. Indus­tri­al robots pro­vide ide­al solu­tions for pre­ci­sion-dri­ven assem­bly and heavy pal­letiz­ing needs, while still assist­ing with inspec­tion and qual­i­ty con­trol jobs. Robot­ic vision elim­i­nates the need for com­plex fix­tur­ing and plays a key role in many solar ener­gy man­u­fac­tur­ing appli­ca­tions, from locat­ing and inspect­ing parts, to guid­ing robots. 

Robot­ic Cell and Wafer Handling:

Solar cells and sil­i­con wafers are del­i­cate items that require del­i­cate han­dling solu­tions. Robots are capa­ble of assem­bling these solar ener­gy sys­tem com­po­nents with greater gen­tle­ness and pre­ci­sion than is pos­si­ble man­u­al­ly. They main­tain con­sis­tent pro­duc­tion speeds and repeata­bil­i­ty nec­es­sary for solar cell and sil­i­con wafer assembly/​handling.

Robots for Solar Pan­el Assembly:

Man­u­fac­tur­ers ben­e­fit from using robots when it comes to con­struct­ing solar pan­els, which are often very com­plex in design. Once again, con­sis­ten­cy and del­i­cate han­dling are very impor­tant. Every com­po­nent must be care­ful­ly aligned. Robots are also very use­ful for han­dling heavy glass pan­els and oth­er solar pan­el com­po­nents with care. 

Robots and Wind Energy:

Indus­tri­al robots have proved invalu­able tools for near­ly every aspect of wind tur­bine man­u­fac­tur­ing. Wind ener­gy sys­tem man­u­fac­tur­ers incor­po­rate robot­ic solu­tions for weld­ing, cut­ting, paint­ing, debur­ring, sand­ing, drilling, and oth­er appli­ca­tions.

Using Robots to Con­struct Wind Turbines:

When it comes to cre­at­ing and assem­bling wind tur­bine com­po­nents, robots offer many advan­tages over man­u­al and hard automa­tion. Fast and flex­i­ble, robots allow wind tur­bine man­u­fac­tur­ers to increase pro­duc­tion and meet lead times more effi­cient­ly, as well as adjust quick­ly to prod­uct changes. The pre­ci­sion and con­sis­tent per­for­mance pos­si­ble with robots beats man­u­al meth­ods, vast­ly improv­ing qual­i­ty con­trol. Robots are cur­rent­ly used to cut, weld, and drill wind tur­bine tow­ers, gears, blades, and oth­er components. ?

Wind Tur­bine Fin­ish­ing with Robots:

Wind tur­bine blades and oth­er com­po­nents must be fin­ished (paint­ed, sand­ed, pol­ished, deburred) to per­fec­tion. High qual­i­ty stan­dards are nec­es­sary to main­tain the blade bal­ance, extend com­po­nent longevi­ty, and with­stand envi­ron­men­tal wear and tear. Robots are help­ing wind tur­bine man­u­fac­tur­ers achieve the best pos­si­ble results. With robots, paint appli­ca­tion in par­tic­u­lar is more con­sis­tent and quick, allow­ing com­pa­nies to match both qual­i­ty require­ments and cus­tomer demands.

Con­tact Robots​.com online or at 8777626881 for more infor­ma­tion about inte­grat­ing robots for alter­na­tive ener­gy industries. 

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