This week at RND we began break down of our largest MAP (Modular Assembly Platform) to date. This machine was a 6 bay (began life as a 5 bay) unit that was approximately 8 meters long. Each bay is designed to have it's own frame, tooling plates, linear motor transport section, pneumatics, guarding etc...
Our modular design has some very benifical and unique features.
Firstly in terms of construction, each bay simply bolts onto the next and after plugging in some quick electrical and pneumatic connections they are now coupled together. After a quick layout study we can release all of the bays to manufacturing as we then move to each of the stations' designs. This helps us get you your system faster!
Next, by using a linear magnetic transport system such as B&R's ACOPOStrack or Beckhoff's XTS transport system (or others, just inquire) it allows us to have a fully asynchronous indexing system. With a traditional dial indexing system (we make those too) you are limited by your slowest station (synchronous). With this track technology you can double or triple up (or more) stations so that, say a leak test operation, that takes 2x as long as your next slowest station can be completed in the same time, improving your overall cycle time.
The final advantage is the ability to quickly, disassemble, ship, and reassemble the machine. Breaking it into individual bays takes only a day or two. At the customer's site the reassembly process is just as quick.
If you have a complex assembly project with lots of parts and multiple SKUs consider contacting RND Automation to discuss how our MAP might be the answer to your automation problems.