Greater performance accuracy is implicit in the evolution of robot intelligence, says Fanuc Robotics' Dick Johnson, general manager, material handling. "For example, there is a trend to offer tools that will increase the accuracy of robots by compensating for variations in the manufacturing process. That promises to both decrease robot programming time and also make possible new robot applications."
Here's what the growing accuracy delivers:
- Ability to download from a robot simulation package with little or no programming touch-up.
- Ability to do machining, drilling and material removal applications from CAD data on parts that require slightly less accuracy than a CNC machine or have no complex 3D geometry (a poor man's CNC).
- Ability to use a robot for quality inspections such as part feature measurement or surface profile scanning of parts.
- Quick recovery from a bent tool.
- Ability to re-master after changing a robot motor or reducer.
- Reduce programming required by "cloning" or duplicating a robot path on another robot or in another plane. Imagine teaching the left side of a car body and then sending the mirror image to the robot on the right side of the car body or teaching one cavity of a six-cavity mold and then having the other five cavities automatically generated.
- Improve pick-up of parts once they have been visually located.