Robotics Industry News
At Automate 2017, Festo Showcases Transformative Flexible Automation
Festo Corporation Posted 03/29/2017
Keeping production running, minimizing downtime when performing changeovers, optimizing capital equipment investment … all made possible by flexible manufacturing solutions from Festo. (Festo Booth #856)
HAUPPAUGE, NY — Festo showcases at Automate 2017 in Chicago, April 3-6, the Handling Guide Online, a new design tool that lowers engineering overhead and speeds delivery of flexible handling subassemblies. The company also introduces new Piezo proportional air valves for better control than traditional solenoid valves in many applications. These and other products, including a family of gantry-based handling systems, EXCM, demonstrate the transformative power of Festo flexible automation. (Festo Booth #856)
On Monday, April 3, from 9-11 a.m., Frank Langro, Director of Marketing and Product Management at Festo and Larry Sweet, IRIM Associate Director of Technology Transition, Professor of the Practice in Robotics, Georgia Tech, will host a seminar on New Developments in Flexible Manufacturing.
Festo is recognized as the most advanced electric and pneumatic motion actuation supplier for its innovative automation solutions and global delivery of products, services, and support. Festo fields teams of application specific engineers to partner with customers on flexible manufacturing projects. The company recently built in Mason,
Ohio, a $70 million state-of-the-art North American distribution and customer solutions center for fast delivery of parts and custom subassemblies. Festo is one of the pioneers in the development of Industry 4.0 concepts.
Festo features for the first time at Automate the new Handling Guide Online configurator for single axis, linear gantry, planar surface gantry, and three-dimensional gantry handling systems. This new productivity tool significantly reduces engineering overhead for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and speeds delivery of custom handling systems, either as plug-and-play components ready for assembly and shipped in a single box or as assembled handling systems. Equipped with basic application information such as load, cycle time, load voltage, and workspace size, a design engineer can specify a single axis, 2D or 3D handling system and receive a CAD drawing in as little as 20 minutes.
A centerpiece of the Festo booth is the unique EXCM family of planar gantries that are a lower cost, and more space efficient alternative in many applications to SCARA and Delta robots. These gantries serve as plug and play subassemblies in assembly and handling machines. The EXCM planar gantry family provides the optimum ratio between installation space and working space. EXCM units can be installed directly on a worktable without an external control cabinet. The unit’s precise and robust recirculating ball bearing guide absorbs large forces and torques, even at high speed.
A robotic controller package consisting of two motors and a CMXH controller is available. The controller comes with safe-torque-off (STO) functionality in accordance with EN 61800-5-2 for enhanced safety. Furthermore, the controller can operate with a high-power supply voltage of 24 to 48 V. The I/O interface with PNP configuration ensures universal communication.
Festo highlights at Automate the latest Piezo valve technology for robotic end-of-arm tooling and other applications where precise pneumatic control is required. Festo Piezo valves are often a better alternative to conventional solenoid valves, especially in the areas of flow and pressure control. These Festo valves are small, lightweight, precise, durable, fast, and they save energy. Another advantage is that they always work proportionally and are wear-resistant. These properties make piezo valves ideal for use in, for example, the semiconductor industry.
At the Universal Robots (UR) Booth #1245, UR and Festo showcase a reliable and cost effective solution for extending the reach of UR 6-axis robots through a horizontal or vertical 7th axis. This new solution is based on the Festo electric linear axis EGC-HD and CMMP-M3 servo drive with Festo’s advanced safety module. Servo controlled actuators have been seamlessly integrated within UR’s programming environment – no special programming expertise required. And, the solution is compatible with the full range of UR’s 6-axis robots capable of end-of-arm loads up to 10 kg.
Calvary Robotics, Booth #1416, will be featuring the Festo and Siemens developed Multi-Carrier System, a mass customization transport solution which Calvary Robotics has incorporated into a flexible automation demonstration. The Multi-Carrier System enables the customization of batch sizes as small as one. The Multi-Carrier System features zero changeover time and embodies Industry 4.0 manufacturing concepts of modularity, communications, and diagnostics.
Mimicking the flexible movement and precise gripping of an elephant’s trunk, the Bionic Handling Assistant is a readily yielding gripping arm with a unique adaptive gripper for fingertip sensitivity in handling odd shaped or fragile objects. Over and above its utility as a safe-to-be-around robotic arm, the system serves Festo as a development platform that combines a wide diversity of technologies and components.
Festo is a leading manufacturer of pneumatic and electromechanical systems, components, and controls for process and industrial automation. For more than 40 years, Festo Corporation has continuously elevated the state of manufacturing with innovations and optimized motion control solutions that deliver higher performing, more profitable automated manufacturing and processing equipment.