Case Study – Laser Marking System
Our customer is a manufacturer of Atex rated fittings for the oil and gas industry. Due to the nature of the application, a laser marking system was required in order to achieve the high levels of product traceability.
We were initially asked to provide a solution to automatically feed 8 families of product, each with 10 variants making the need for a solution to be found to handle 80 product variants. It was very quickly identified that it was not going to be cost effective to feed the products with conventional mechanical feeding systems, so an alternative solution was needed.
The solution that was conceived by Adelphi Automation was to have one mechanical feeding system, which would be fed with product in large quantities onto a belt conveyor, where they were randomly presented to a handling robot.
Using a PLC to fully automate the process, all product variants are introduced into the system from a bulk hopper and elevator feed. This is then followed by a linear transfer on a belt conveyor, with vision technology used to identify all 80 variants to determine the product type, along with the position and orientation, as they travel along the conveyor. The robot is then able to consistently pick and place parts from the conveyor to the laser marking index table. A pneumatic locking system is then used to secure and align all parts so they can be accurately laser marked, the table then index’s the loaded products for laser marking with a unique numeric code.