PROJECT SPOTLIGHT

Robotic Adhesive Dispensing System

Project summary

MWES built an automation system that would robotically apply a small amount of 3M Scotch-Weld Epoxy Adhesive to metal ventilator components for the healthcare industry.

The Challenge

In the world of manufacturing small healthcare components, precision is paramount. The level of precision required to perform this application could not be achieved with a manual operation. A leader in the global manufacturing of medical equipment approached MWES to design and build a robotic solution to this problem.

The Solution

MWES engineered a system that was small enough that it could be placed on a desk. It utilized a Cartesian robot and a teach pendant controller including a calibrator for the tip of the adhesive applicator. The robot would also use a laser distance measurement device to determine the height of the parts before dispensing the adhesive. The disposable dispensing syringe would be refilled at a filling station with 6 ounces of epoxy.

At the start of the production, the operator would install a new syringe, that would have been kept in cold storage, by connecting it to the valve. Once installed the operator runs a purge routine on the robot to purge the system of air and deliver fresh adhesive to the valve. Once the adhesive is ready, the robot runs the tip calibration routine to ensure the accuracy of the bead application. 

The operator mounts the part tray assembly fixture on the application plate under the Cartesian robot. The operator loads 25 parts onto the tray assembly fixture and then identifies the sequence to be run on the robot’s teach pendant. Once activated the robot moves the laser distance measurement device to the first part on the tray and it determines the location of the part. The robot then moves the valve tip to the first part of the tray and dispenses a circular bead of adhesive. This sequence is repeated until all parts have had the adhesive applied to them.

Next, the operator manually places bellows onto all the bellows ends. The operator then identifies the sequence to be run on the robot’s teach pendant. The same operation is then performed as before with the laser distance measurement device and the robot dispensing a bead of adhesive. Once the sequence has been completed on all the parts, the operator then removes the assembly fixture tray and replaces it with a new one.

Impact to the Customer

With an adhesive application time of 3-5 seconds per part, the automation system that MWES provided this customer is extremely fast and precise. This kind of speed and precision could not be achieved without robotic automation.

Midwest Engineered Systems has a wide range of experience in building custom systems for healthcare applications. If you’re looking to improve your assembly automation throughput, we have the knowledge and experience to make the project a success.

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

Innovation Through Automation

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