Robotic Truss Welding Cell - Midwest Engineered Systems

The Challenge

A customer came to Midwest Engineered Systems looking to robotically automate the welding of steel trusses together quickly and efficiently. Their current manual process was labor-intensive and time-consuming. The needs of the process required tying up relatively scarce highly skilled resources to make sure the task was performed properly.

The Solution

MWES designed a robotic weld cell that could handle the truss welding with speed and ease. This automated welding cell consisted of three ABB 1520ID industrial robots, each with its own welding equipment. A Ferris wheel-like system was developed for a truss positioner using an ABB 1000K Positioner that could continuously feed trusses to be welded by the robots.

The automated welding operation begins when the operator manually places the proper steel components that make up the truss into the positioner clamps. The operator then verifies the clamps are engaged. Once the operator makes sure there are no other persons or obstructions in the station, the operator presses the reset button. This indicates to the robot controller the station is ready for the automatic welding operation. From here, the robots execute a welding program designed specifically for each type of truss. While the system is welding the positioner can be loaded with the next truss assembly by the operator.

When the robots have completed the assigned program, the robot controller will look for the ready signal from the operator’s station. When the signal is given, the robot will index the positioner and begin the next weld program. At this point, the operator can unload the welded truss assembly before loading in the components for the next assembly.

Impact to the Customer

The MWES robotic truss welding system increased the customer’s welding throughput all while reducing the need for highly trained manpower in the process. This robotic system replaced a labor-intensive and time-consuming repetitive operation that was traditionally done by a number of highly trained welders whose abilities can now be used for more specialized operations.

Midwest Engineered Systems has a wide range of experience building custom robotic welding solutions. If you’re looking to improve your throughput of complex welding operations or are interested in automating the welding of large-scale assemblies, we have the knowledge and experience to make the project a success.

Contact us to learn about how Midwest Engineered Systems can automate even your most challenging operations today!

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