At first glance, it might seem like any other three-axis Cartesian robot. But a second look generates the ah-ha moment that tells you what you are seeing is truly unique.
East Windsor, Conn.-based Dri-Air Industries Inc. (Booth S34067) is using NPE2009 as the launch of its robotics offering in North America.
The upstream auxiliary equipment manufacturer in January entered into a distribution partnership with Vignate, Italy-based robot manufacturer Sytrama srl.
The patented robot design is so unique that they named it such. The Unique-series robot utilizes two servodrives to perform the same motions as three-axis robot, significantly reducing weight, size and cost.
Sytrama accomplished this by bending the Y-axis 90 degrees to serve essentially as the Y axis and X axis.
We don't cut corners. We go around it, Jim Schmitz, quipped in a June 22 interview at NPE.
Schmitz is Sytrama USA's vice president and general manager.
With a base model price tag of about $18,000, the Unique robot is optimum for pick-and-place applications where parts cannot fall from the mold. Injection molders often use hybrid robots that incorporate both servomotors and pneumatics for these jobs to save money.
The problem, Schmitz said, is that pneumatic tools are functionally limited on the hybrid robots. Unique eliminates those concerns, giving servo action both inside the mold, as well as traversing out and palletizing parts with standard conveyor indexing.
This programs like a three-axis, and you can program it to stop anywhere, Schmitz said.
The robot is ideal for presses up to 300 tons and is easily mounted to the fixed platen, a Dri-Air news release said. The robot is designed for payloads up to 11 pounds.
Dri-Air also launched a new central conveying system for smaller-throughput operations transferring dried resin for 33-machine and under setups. The Sentinel line makes it economical for smaller plants or smaller manufacturers to justify an investment in a central material-handling system, said Dri-Air President Charles Sears in an NPE interview.
It is set up in a modular format to allow for fast and flexible installation, Sears said.
This has been very good for small amounts of material, he said, which he characterized as about a half-pound to 50 pounds of throughput per hour.
The system features a time-fill, clear-out cycle to prevent resin from resting in the conveying piping and collecting moisture, integrated vacuum valves for easy installation and a touch-panel control system.
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