Robotic welding is poised for tremendous growth over the next few years with revenues predicted to climb to $3.38 billion by 2020, an increase of 40 percent over last year’s earnings.
According to global growth consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, emerging nations like Asia, Africa and Latin America are realizing the benefits of robotic welding and fueling a substantial increase in the use of robots for welding worldwide. Market demand is already high in North America and Europe where industries are benefiting from significant improvements in energy efficiency, greater reliability and repeatability, and reduced labour costs.
The benefits become even greater with the addition of OCTOPUZ, an intelligent offline robot programming and simulation software solution created by In-House Solutions. The software allows for offline start-to-finish simulation, cuts path generation time by at least 50 percent and allows users to program multiple robots simultaneously without impacting production time. OCTOPUZ provides a distinct advantage as more and more companies integrate robotic welding into their manufacturing processes.
“With OCTOPUZ, users have the ability to create welds in as few as 2-clicks while still offering advanced functionality allowing users to modify every aspect of the weld itself including rotary positioner and linear rail axis positioning,” said Chris McIntosh, Technology Manager at In-House Solutions. “After the welds have been created, the parameters for each weld can be modified and the transition between the welds can be set intuitively using the simulation interface in OCTOPUZ.”
What makes OCTOPUZ so powerful for welding applications?
- Simple 2-click interface for defining welds
- Fully parametric weld motion
- Collision detection
- Automatic torch reorientation for welding into corners
- Automatic calculation of external axis angles (rails/rotaries)
OCTOPUZ offers several distinct advantages that users won’t find in other programming software. It is compatible with as many as 19 brands of robots, including KUKA, Yaskawa Motoman, Fanuc and OTC. The software is able to simulate multi-pass and touch-sensing, which can be dangerous not to simulate, and allows search speeds to be modified between slow, medium, fast or mm/second. It will also simulate all motion, including torch-cleaning.
AGT Robotics, a leader in the development and manufacture of automated industrial equipment, recently demonstrated the use of OCTOPUZ with their BeamMaster Weld, a robotic welding line designed for structural steel fabricators. The complex welding process was carried out by a KUKA robot, which was fully programmed offline using OCTOPUZ. Offline programming had previously been limited to the Fanuc, Motoman, and OTC robot brands. In addition, other offline programming methods or teach pendant programming require a significantly greater investment in time than OCTOPUZ.
3D Touch Sensing was used to locate the part and linking searches allowed the operator to detect the outside edge of the thin plates, which is particularly useful when a part is misplaced or slightly different from the CAD model. Touch Sensing with Global Searching Offsets places components more quickly without requiring exact positioning and also reduces the number of possible collisions during the operation. The process included coordination between a linear rail and an external axis, which was not controlled by the robot.
To learn more about OCTOPUZ and its benefits for use in robotic welding and other applications, contact us for a personalized demo.