Getting a grip
25 January 2013
Ecotile, manufacturer of interlocking floor tiles, has fully automated its manufacturing process using a single Fanuc Robotics robot working between two Sumitomo Demag 500t injection moulding presses. Hi-Tech Automati
Hi-Tech Automation supplied a Fanuc Robotics M710iC robot, mounted on a seventh axis, to handle mouldings from press to pallet.
Handling the PVC tile at 63Â°C at ejection from the press meant that gripper design was critical to success. It grips the outer edges of the tile while still in the press tool, then moves it to a desprue station and positions it in a cooling rack.
After a set period of cooling, the robot uses a vacuum to pick up the tile and palletise it in one of two palletising areas. The gripper places a cardboard protection tile between layers.
Ecotile can now run batches of any size, colour or design and the robot provides a consistently high quality product.