In response to the queries received from several customers that were looking for fully automatic solutions to cut and redress their carbide rings, the engineers at our R&D Department have envisaged and developed the “Robotic Island” concept.
The whole idea is simply the logical evolution of the well-known Atomat machine, AT711E CNC model, designed and built to perform the automatic change of the diamond grinding wheels.
An important role was also played by the state of the art achieved in the arena of industrial robotics whose versatility and current widespread distribution have made its application complementary, economical and indispensable, also in the field of the CNC machine tools.
The system consists of the main grinding CNC machine, the Atomat AT711E CNC and a rear enclosed area, safely interlocked, including an anthropomorphic robot and the rolls and grinding wheel support pallets. The Robotic Island works 100% autonomously from the operator, even (and specially) during night shifts, allowing, for instance, to complete the grinding sequence of an entire set of tungsten carbide rings of the whole high-speed wire-rod finishing block
Easy managed support pallets that can be either manually operated or automatically handled by customer’s integrated storage system.
Used for both roll and grinding wheels storage, with fixed positioning areas inside the robotic island.
The AT711E is equipped with the correct roll inner bore Ø whereas the anthropomorphic robot has an universal gripper, capable to handle both rolls and grinding wheels at the same time.
A brief presentation of the main steps to prepare, operate and finally retrieve the finished rolls from the robotic island.
1. Roll & G.Wheel Preparation – Outside the robotic island the operator prepares the set of rolls and grinding wheels.
2. Roll & G.Wheel Positioning – The wheels and the rolls are moved inside the island and placed in predefined areas by means of the supplied movable pallets.
3. Robot Gripper and Headstock Collet Selection – According to the bores diameter of the rolls to be machined, the suitable CNC grinding machine headstock collet will be mounted, whereas the robot has an universal gripper, capable of clamping both rolls and grinding wheels.
4. Programming – The operator defines the sequence of the grinding process according to the set of rolls placed inside the robotic island.
5. Automatic Process Execution – The island takes care of the whole process. The robots mounts on the CNC machine each programmed roll and relevant wheel. In-process groove main geometries checking and grinding wheel power absorption take charge of the grinding monitoring.
6. Finished Workpieces Unload & Check – Once the job is completed the operator can either remove the finished rolls or recall them for an automatic grooves’ geometry checking.