Welding is carried out globally in almost all manufacturing industries working with metal. In many cases, operators have to prepare the surface that needs welding by sanding it. And often, the weld seams have to be post processed by grinding them away completely - or just by processing them enough to leave an even surface that is ready for further treatment.
While welding is one of the most automated processes when it comes to global robotic implementations - sanding, grinding and deburring are among the least automated processes in the world.
To automate the complex manual processes in the manufacturing industries is difficult. Often next to impossible to programme a robot to perform the skilled craftsmen’s trajectories. Robots are developed by robot experts, for robot experts – creating a gap between the skilled workers with the know-how needed and the robot programmers. This gap is holding back automation of complex manual surface treatment jobs.
Moreover, the global industries of surface processing hold some of the most dangerous jobs with the highest rates of working related injuries. Combined with the general demographic changes, the manufacturing industries experience a “skills-drain”. Hence, it is difficult to get qualified labour, and the talent pool of new young skilled workers is decreasing drastically. Also, in cheap labour emerging markets.
Nordbo Robotics creates ‘no-code’ software platforms for robots that enable skilled workers to replicate their surface treatment know-how and movements onto robots without a single line of code. We bridge human craftsmanship and machine precision and, thereby, give skilled workers the control of the process results, and the ability to do new robot programmes as often as needed on their own. By paving the way for robots and automation in surface processing industries, our software platforms improve the production quality and throughput. They prevent injuries, inconsistencies and reduce scrap materials in productions.
As an illustration, we visited KC Product in Denmark. It is a company with more than 40 years of experience working in the stainless steel sector. They already use Cobots for welding. They can now use the same cobot for grinding the weld seams.
Jonas Bolvig said:
“In our case, it’s just as much getting the flexibility in the production. So when we have a high load in production we need more manpower - and manpower is hard to get”.
Additionally, Jonas Bolvig says that they can get the same quality no matter who the operator is.
This is what automation offers to the production department. For this reason, we try to make it more accessible for more workers with our Mimic Platform.