This year’s Automechanika event, held in Birmingham in early June, attracted thousands of visitors from across the automotive market. With a focus on vehicle production and the aftermarket, key themes of this year’s event included electrification, innovation and improved efficiency. As leading experts in factory automation, Bosch Rexroth were able to share their insights and product innovations, demonstrating how connectivity and data-based solutions offer the potential to optimise the workflow and offer significant time savings.
Among the products being demonstrated at this year’s event, the IoT gateway offers a solution for companies at the start of their journey towards connected manufacturing and Industry 4.0. For those plants and machines which have not yet arrived in the digital age, or are dipping their toe in the water, the IoT gateway gives equipment the connectivity required to enable real-time monitoring of process data such as temperature, pressure and vibration.
Used hand in hand with the IoT gateway, Rexroth’s new VR range of Industrial PCs have been designed specifically to increase productivity and efficiency in manufacturing. In an environment where robustness, adaptability, energy efficiency and maximum cost efficiency are all pre-requisites, the new VR family from Rexroth is an industrial PC incorporating state of the art touch-screen technology which delivers high flexibility, good scalability and exceptional long service availability.
Sean Kilgallen, marketing manager at Bosch Rexroth commented, “Manufacturing increasingly relies on connected and data-based solutions, allowing lots of processes to be completed more quickly and efficiently. For this year’s show, we teamed up with our parent company (Bosch) to showcase a range of innovative solutions and concepts for effective and efficient manufacturing, including maintenance and repair throughout the complete product life cycle – from production right through to the aftermarket.”
Working with Audi
No strangers to working within the automotive industry, the Bosch Rexroth team worked closely with Audi to improve efficiency at their Ingolstadt plant in Germany. With an average production of around 850 Audi A3s every day, the car manufacturer uses a robot-based production system to provide a high level of quality, system availability and reliability. As part of this process, Audi teamed up with Bosch Rexroth to provide reliable spot welding, tightening and end-tooling.
Depending on the model of the body, 429 welding robots produce up to 4,500 spot welds on a wide range of metal sheet combinations. With adaptive control and integrated process monitoring, the Rexroth welding system PS6000 forms the basis of this operation to ensure high-quality spot welds, resulting in enhanced test cycles. This approach cuts operating costs and makes the production system more flexible.
Around 250 of the tightening connections on the A3 fall into the category of ‘safety relevant’. The high level of automation, short cycle times and space limitations are met by the Rexroth tightening system 350. This system allows for quick changes, eliminating the need for additional robots. During production, various nutrunner combinations can be docked onto and off of the robots within seconds. The modular tightening spindles can be adapted to suit the respective tightening application. Doors can be bolted on completely automatically and robots approaching from both sides detect the exact position of the body and the tightening positions. Complete traceability is also provided, with tightening results and positions stored in Audi’s documentation database.
To discover more about Rexroth’s automation solutions, visit www.boschrexroth.co.uk