Welding Department Upgrades Robotic Automation Program
In an effort to maintain its cutting edge exposure to manufacturing technology, the College of the Canyons welding technology department has installed Laser Touch Sensing adaptive control systems on two of its robotic welding machines.
According to Lincoln Service Technician Christopher Joseph, touch sensing is “the first line of defense against poor weld joint repeatability.”
An upgrade from conventional touch sensing, the laser touch sensing process improves the overall speed, efficiency and quality of the robotic welding process.
“With conventional touch sensing, a series of physical touches is required to determine the part orientation before the robotics can confirm any misalignment,” said Tim Baber, department chair of the college’s welding technology program.
“But this methodical process is eliminated with laser touch sensing,” added Baber. “Part position is confirmed within seconds rather than minutes, and that 45 seconds you could save is a huge deal in a manufacturing environment.”
Funding for the new systems was secured through a recent National Science Foundation (NSF) Advanced Manufacturing Processing Technicians grant awarded to the college.
Following installation, laser touch sense technology and training will be incorporated into the program curriculum by the fall 2015 semester.
Because of the department’s heavy focus on the immediate development of employable workers, training students with cutting edge technology is a winning proposition for Baber.
“This type of training provides a lot of value to the student, and it can eventually provide value to the company they find employment with,” Baber added. “With so many employers looking to robotics for improvement in their bottom line, students displaying an ability to operate laser touch sensing increase their employability and wage-earning potential.”
Follow the link for more information about the welding technology department.