At NPE 2003, automation will be one of the big machinery stories, as plastics processors move to boost efficiency and cut labor costs to compete on the global stage.
Visitors to McCormick Place can see everything from basic sprue pickers to six-axis, articulating-arm robots capable of complex movement in every direction.
Here is a preview of new robots on display at NPE.
Motoman Inc. (Booth N4375): Six-axis robot with high rigidity, designed for part-finishing jobs such as deburring, grinding and sanding. The DX1350 can be floor- or ceiling-mounted and carry 77.2 pounds.
Ranger Automation Systems Inc. (Booth S1256, S3134 and S3234): Value Series servo robots, featuring a fast, single-stage vertical arm and compact controller integrated into the robot. A new Servo Degator Arm for part trimming. The SRS Series servo-driven sprue picker. Mold Editor, a remote programming kit that is an exact simulator of the actual pendant controller.
Remak North America (Booth S832): The RX51 three-axis robot that fits injection molding presses with up to 400 tons of clamping force. Remak claims its high-speed RX5, with a removal time of less than 0.3 seconds, is the world's fastest sprue picker.
SAS Automation Ltd. (Booths E10118 and S3257): Rotary indexing tables. An expanded line of end-of-arm tooling made from a plastic composite material. A retracting vacuum arm. Robots will run at both booth locations.
Wittmann Inc. (Booth S1049): Compact Series robot. New high-speed sprue picker and side-entry robots. Traversing robots that have vibratory stability control. In auxiliary equipment, Wittmann will show a low-priced Primus temperature controller, new materials-handling loaders, a new Smartflow valve for dryers and the new SJ screenless granulator with single- and double-screw designs.
Yushin America Inc. (Booth S2093): A personal-computer-based, open-architecture controller with a touch screen. A fast robot with a shaft-type linear motor. New low-cost, servo-drive traverse robot and linear-motor-drive robots. Two new sprue pickers plus a new series of conveyors.