The automation of the manufacturing processes is at present an integral part of efficient production. When there is repetitive work and a make ready process certain steps can be replaced with automated workflows. In this way the flow of production can be maintained.
More Information On Automation
With the software mpm® (MicroStep Production Management) together with access to sheet metal shelf storage, an equipped cutting plant can transmit the command to outsource the metal plate required. A crane with magnetic or vacuum lifter picks up the plate and delivers it to the respective cutting table.
It automatically measures the cutting machine position and direction in which the sheet metal panel must be positioned and then allows for the execution of the cutting to begin.
Once the cut is completed, the crane clears the cut metal sheet and transports it in a clearing away zone. Here employees can then take care of the sorting of components.
If an adequate overhead crane is not available, the entire loading and unloading of the cutting system can also be done via automated conveyor tables. For this purpose the metal sheet is only stored in a loading zone. The feeding table then transports the sheet into the cutting region. When the cut is finished the sheet is automatically transported to where the finished parts can be conveyed and then removed and sorted.
Automatic loading and unloading of pipes and profiles
For efficient and continuous flow of material when cutting pipes, the pipe cutting machines of MicroStep® can be equipped with an automatic loading and unloading system. The tubes or profiles are fed to a stacker via a charging device of a tube magazine. If necessary, the cutting system of this tube magazine is provisioned and new pipes are automatically clamped in the jaw chuck.
Once a pipe segment is cut this is transported via a carrying system. If required further transport via a tethered conveyor system can be used to carry the pipe segment to the next work station.
Sheetmetal cutting directly from a coil
Coiled Sheets are an efficient and space-saving solution for transporting and storing thin sheets. Normally, these must first be unrolled, directed and eventually shortened by means of tape cut to a desired metal plate format.
With the automatic coil solution from MicroStep® the unrolled material may be further processed by plasma or laser directly on the strip. This saves time and makes manual handling of individual metal sheets unnecessary. The de-coiler wraps the tape directly on the cutting table. For absolute precise cutting results the cutting system, using laser scanners surveys the exact alignment of the coiled section of the strip and adjusts the current cutting plan on it. Subsequently, the desired contours are cut.
Upon completion of the cutting operation the conveyor system equipped with a cutting table transports the finished cut section of the sheet metal. In the next step the cut strip from the sheet metal can then be removed either manually or using a robot. The remainder of the sheet is cut into smaller parts using a guillotine.
Automated order and material inventory management
In order to draw maximum efficiency from an automated cutting system, a reliable software solution for the organization of the cutting process is necessary. The MicroStep Production Management, mpm® offers this.
The mpm® manages customer orders and components contained therein and these are nested automatically according to priority, material type, material thickness and machining processes. These cutting plans are given to a suitable cutting machine for processing via the mpm® software. If a connection to a storage system that consists of automatic material feed exists, the cutting machine is equipped with the required equal semi-finished part and then automatically acquires the execution of the plan.