In response to global trade disruptions, supply chain issues and widespread labor shortages, American manufacturers are increasingly turning to automation and robotics to achieve greater flexibility and relocate production closer to home. The role of automation in reshoring and improving productivity in the US also depends on bridging the skills gap in robotics education and better educating and upskilling workers.
Against this dynamic backdrop, ABB has developed over 30 new robot, software, digital and educational products in the last year designed to help industrial manufacturers of all sizes increase their operational performance and gain ready access to a well-trained workforce.
At IMTS 2022, September 12-17 at McCormick Place in Chicago, ABB will feature a selection of these recent robotic innovations in the North Hall (Booth #236520), including versatile industrial and collaborative robots, and software advancements that reduce programming and operational complexity. ABB will also display a selection of interactive robotic educational tools and training programs at the Smartforce Student Summit (North Building, Booth #215110).
“ABB has continually developed cutting-edge products and support programs to help a wide variety of manufacturers and their employees become more productive, resilient and adaptable. Our IMTS exhibit will showcase a number of these innovations, many of which have opened up robotic automation to a broad group of first time users,” said Joe Chudy, US General Manager, ABB Robotics. “Now, more than ever, businesses of all sizes need to embrace robotics to efficiently adapt production to satisfy their customer’s most pressing needs. While investment in automation plays a key role in flexibility in operations, equally important is investment in education and vocational training.”
Highlights of ABB’s IMTS exhibit include a GoFa™ collaborative robot equipped for welding; a live 3D printing demo featuring ABB’s 3D Printing PowerPac for ABB’s RobotStudio® simulation and offline programming software; the MiniMAC robotic grinding cell from ABB Value Provider MESH Automation; a vision guided FlexLoader™ machine tool tending cell; and the Cobot FlexTrainer education cell for interactive classroom training.
Further details on ABB’s IMTS 2022 exhibit: Main Booth North Hall (#236520)
Main Booth North Hall (#236520)
GoFa Collaborative Robot Welding Cell: Designed to safely work directly and continuously alongside humans and to be very easy to install and use, GoFa helps businesses automate processes involving heavier loads and longer reaches to assist workers with repetitive and ergonomically challenging tasks..
- GoFa will perform interactive, live arc welding demos. Visitors to the booth will be able to use ABB’s customizable two-button Lead-Through Programming function to tack and weld small parts. By moving the robot in the desired weld path, visitors will create their own weld program and watch GoFa replicate that path in a live weld.
Additive Manufacturing Cell with the 3D Printing PowerPac: A live 3D printing demo featuring an ABB absolute accuracy IRB 4400 robot equipped with a MDPH2 end-of-arm-tool, the original direct pellet-to-print large-format extruder from Massive Dimension.
- The demo is powered by the recently introduced 3D Printing PowerPac for ABB’s RobotStudio simulation and offline programming software. The new PowerPac eliminates time consuming manual programming by translating any standard slicer software design into ABB’s simulation environment and robot code. This means an operator can progress from the CAD design stage to final modeling of a product in just half an hour.
MiniMAC Grind Robotic Deburring Cell from MESH Automation: MESH Automation, an ABB Robotics Value Provider (system integrator), will be displaying a version of its MiniMAC Grind Deburring featuring an ABB IRB 2600 robot and a multi-tool end-of-arm tooling mounted to the robot, which eliminates the need for tool changes. The “pre-machining” system automatically removes excess material from recently cast metal parts.
FlexLoader Machine Tool Tending Cell: ABB’s next generation of compact, standardized machine tool tending cells include a 6-axis robot ideally suited to the reach and payload requirements of the specific application. FlexLoaders are Ideal for both low and high-volume production, tending vertical lathes, horizontal and vertical machining centers, 5-axis machines and grinders.
- User-friendly FlexLoader Vision provides the flexibility to automate the machine tending of parts that range from small to very large, increasing machine tool utilization by as much as 60 percent while reducing operating costs.
Smartforce Student Summit (North Building, Booth #215110)
Cobot FlexTrainer Education Cell: Designed for interactive classroom training using the latest ABB programming technology with any of ABB’s collaborative robots, the IMTS demo features the new 6-axis GoFa™ collaborative robot. With the Cobot FlexTrainer education cell students can easily program ABB cobots via Lead-Through programming and ABB’s new Wizard easy programming software.
The trainig cell is fenceless, allowing greater interaction between the students and the robot. It features all of the capabilities of ABB’s collaborative robots, including the industry’s most versatile and powerful controller, an ABB FlexPendant, and access to RobotStudio®, ABB’s offline programming software.
AR/VR Station: A Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality station where students and teachers can dive into the virtual world and interact with ABB robots via RobotStudio, ABB’s offline simulation and programming software that we offer to schools for free for educational use.
Curriculum Samples and Info on SMART Certification: A comprehensive display of ABB’s robotics STEM education curriculum materials intended to bridge the gap between education and industry, and to support teaching robotics at all types of schools. Plus, info about SMART Certification: Information about how students and teachers can become ABB certified through our SMART certification for STEM program.
ABB (ABB: NYSE) is a leading global technology company that energizes the transformation of society and industry to achieve a more productive, sustainable future. By connecting software to its electrification, robotics, automation and motion portfolio, ABB pushes the boundaries of technology to drive performance to new levels. With a history of excellence stretching back more than 130 years, ABB’s success is driven by about 105,000 talented employees in over 100 countries. www.abb.com
ABB Robotics & Discrete Automation is a pioneer in robotics, machine automation and digital services, providing innovative solutions for a diverse range of industries, from automotive to electronics to logistics. As one of the world’s leading robotics and machine automation suppliers, we have shipped more than 500,000 robot solutions. We help our customers of all sizes to increase productivity, flexibility and simplicity and to improve output quality. We support their transition towards the connected and collaborative factory of the future. ABB Robotics & Discrete Automation employs more than 11,000 people at over 100 locations in more than 53 countries. www.abb.com/robotics