It is no secret that additive manufacturing is used by many companies specializing in the automotive industry. That’s why more and more companies are looking for solutions to automate their printing processes. And recently, automotive giant Ford introduced its mobile robot for operating 3D printers. Thanks to him, the American company is able to continuously print parts without human intervention. His name is Javier, he can work all day and only needs a short break to recharge.
Jason Ryska, global director of manufacturing technology development, discusses the advantages of the mobile robot: “ This new process has the potential to change the way we use robotics in our manufacturing facilities. » He adds: ” Not only does it allow Ford to scale its 3D printing operations, it also extends to other aspects of our manufacturing processes – this technology will allow us to simplify equipment and be even more flexible on the assembly line.”
Benefits of the Javier robot
According to Ford, the mobile robot not only increased production speed, but also minimized costs in production processes. With Javier’s help, Carbon 3D printers based on the Digital Light Synthesis process are therefore constantly producing custom parts such as the brake line support for the Mustang Shelby® GT500. To ensure Javier’s operation and autonomy, Ford teams must first download the necessary files for printing so that the robot can “understand” the actions it needs to take. Ford also says that Javier’s performance improved through the actions taken, and he gained sensitivity while reducing the margin of error.
Finally, the robot is not only compatible with 3D printers. Ford reveals that Javier is also able to support a wide variety of vehicles available at the factory. and that the benefits are similar to those seen in additive manufacturing.
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Cover photo credit: Ford