Robot Gripper Machine

Robot Gripper Shot Blast Machine

Delivery:

18 weeks +

Technology:

Wheelblast

Application:

Cleaning, Cosmetic Finishing, Deflashing, Shot Peening

Process:

In-line

Key Benefits

High blast performance

Fully programmable robot guidance

Targeted blasting of defined areas

Utilisation of wheelblast energy

Features

  • Optimal angle of impact
  • Special gripper avoiding blast recesses
  • Abrasive removal from the part by defined movements (blow-off/blow-out as an option)
  • Exceptional efficiency
  • Small space requirement, no foundation pit needed
  • Easy integration into production lines

Applications

  • Removal of fire cracks, e.g. from aluminum castings
  • Shot peening
  • Blasting of filigree parts (no deformation by a targeted selection of surfaces to be blasted)

Precisely Targeted Surface Treatment

The Robot Gripper unites the advantages of two technologies to deliver precisely targeted surface treatment at high efficiency. The combination of an industrial robot and an efficient wheelblast machine provides programme-controlled accurate movement of the workpiece to achieve a high blast performance.

Programme-controlled Workpiece Movement and
High Blast Performance

The robot arm holding the workpiece is introduced through a special rubber membrane seal into the blast chamber and is tightly docked to it by a sealing plate. The membrane seal protects the robot from abrasive and dust whilst allowing great mobility and flexibility to the robot arm. The fully programmable robot is enabled to move three-dimensionally within the chamber and allows the optimal guidance of the workpiece in the blast stream.

Typical Usage by Industry Sector

Foundries

Primarily blast cleaning (cosmetic finishing) and burr removal: Robot Grippers can be directly integrated in foundry lines and run in the same cycle.

Due to its space-saving construction, the Robot Gripper can be easily integrated in fully automated die cast cells. Parts to be blasted may include cylinder heads, oil sumps, motor blocks, gearboxes and steering boxes.

Automotive Industry

With ever increasing performance and torque requirements especially in gear manufacturing and the resultant additional cyclical stresses, the fatigue life of gearwheels must be increased by shot
peening. 

The Robot Gripper performs very accurate movement of the workpiece within the blast stream so that the areas to be peened can be optimally treated.

In automotive applications magnesium parts are increasingly used in automotive applications due to the weight advantage that the material offers. However, magnesium dust can be highly explosive and must be handled carefully. The Robot Gripper is an attractive solution due to its patented, airtight seal, which wholly contains any dust and abrasive in the blast chamber.

Aerospace

Highly stressed safety components are accurately shot peened to increase fatigue life. The programme-controlled workpiece movement by the robot assures accurate repeatability of the process. Parts may include air brakes and landing gear components.

Special Features and Options

The process: The robot picks up the workpiece and introduces it through a special rubber membrane seal into the blast chamber.
A sealing plate fixed to the robot arm docks it to the seal. The connection is 100 per cent tight, protecting the robot and its environment from abrasive and dust. Before docking, the rubber membrane seal is held in position by three arms.

The workpiece is then very accurately blasted as it is moved by the robot in the blast pattern in accordance with the required blast result. Afterwards the membrane seal is held by the holding arms and the robot undocks. The robot moves the part into the emptying position where the abrasive is removed by defined rotations. Finally, the part is transferred to storage or transport systems.

Patented Membrane Seal

Due to the 100 per cent tight connection of the Robot Gripper’s sealing plate and the patented membrane seal, the robot (and its vicinity) are completely protected and all abrasive and dust remains within the blast chamber. The patented membrane seal is, however, incredibly flexible and provides enormous mobility to the robot arm so that the part can be moved into all positions in front of the blast stream.

The membrane seal follows the rotational movements of the robot so that the rubber seal is not damaged. Furthermore the robot turns the membrane seal 120° during undocking in order to rotate the main stress points of the seal to extend its service life. As an additional safety feature, the membrane seal has a two-layer structure so that if one layer is damaged or reaches the end of its service life, the second will still be available. If abrasive enters into the intermediate space, this will be detected and a security device stops the machine automatically.

Flexible, Quick, Efficient

The use of industrial robots not only provides exact, programme-controlled part movement during blasting, but also enables the machine to be integrated into the preceding and successive production processes.

The Robot Gripper machine can be automatically connected to a cell, e.g. parts can be directly taken from a punch, blasted, and then delivered back to the production line. This material handling capability can greatly reduce cycle times.

The part holder can be easily and automatically changed to allow the blasting of various components. In addition, the use of two alternately working robots can further increase process efficiency.

Easy to Maintain

Wheelabrator Robot Gripper blast machines provide high availability/operational readiness as the robot is protected from abrasive and contamination by the membrane seal.

Other than the gripper arm of the robot which is constructed in hardened manganese and tool steel, there are no more mobile parts for workpiece handling within the blast chamber, so there is no additional wear.

Large blast chambers ensure that the abrasive has already lost a considerable share of its velocity when hitting the wear liners. This has a positive effect on the service life of these parts.

The machine is designed to enable easy access, and the blast wheels, installed in the bottom part of the cabinet, are easy to reach for maintenance work.

 

 

Specific Functions

Combination of a Blast Wheel with an Air Blast Nozzle

For specific blast functions an airblast nozzle can be installed in the cabinet. This is recommended when very targeted, touch-up blasting of small areas is needed.

Robot Peener

For specific, pinpoint-targeted shot peening work, Wheelabrator offers the Robot Peener. The Robot Peener utilises airblast technology as well as blast wheels, but the construction and machine elements are very similar to the Robot Gripper. The same membrane seal for dustproof docking to the blast cabinet is used to provide the same three-dimensional mobility in the blast chamber. However, the Robot Peener (and its robot, gripper, nozzles and blast wheels) is specifically designed for shot peening applications.

The Robot Peener’s pinpoint airblast treatment allows powerful shot peening of those parts which should or must be blasted only at clearly defined points.

The wheelblast technology of the Robot Peener combined with the precise targeted airblast technology delivers shot peening to a high level of accuracy and efficiency to deliver faster treatment times.