Automation brings the work of machining to a new level. Non-stop 24/7 operation and precisely repeatable results are only part of the benefits of this solution. Pokkels pays special attention to the development of automatic laser cleaning systems. In this article, we will tell you what types of automation Pokkels develops.
Suitable for: those who need to clean flat parts.
The first type of automation is a coordinate table with a laser system above it. The setup looks like a CNC milling machine. The workpiece to be cleaned is placed on the table or fed into it by a conveyor. A cleaning program is started. The laser system completely processes the entire workpiece in the X and Y axes. The system can use the saved settings, set the size of the workpiece and the required power. The coordinate system is great for cleaning identical products of the same size and thickness.
Suitable for: companies that deal with rolled products.
The next type of automation is an automated system for working with rolled products. Depending on the shape of the pipe different ways of realization of cleaning are possible. In the case of a rectangular profile it can be a frame on which several laser heads are mounted, each of which cleans one side of the pipe. The pipe itself is moved by means of roller belts and rolled inside the frame. In the case of a round-shaped pipe, it could be a system where one laser head moves longitudinally along the rotating pipe.
Case: Automating pipe cleaning
The customer approached Pokkels with the task of creating an automated system that had to handle both square and rectangular pipe profiles.
The Pokkels specialists developed a system that is integrated into the production line. The laser unit is able to monitor the presence of the pipe in the processing area using sensors and start laser cleaning. Through the movement of the pipe with the help of roller conveyors, the pipe is fully processed. When the automatic cleaning process is complete, the pipe is transported via roller conveyors to the painting area.
Canvas cleaning system
Suitable for: companies that need to clean web or coil materials.
Depending on the size of the web and the application, the laser head can either be fixed statically or moved in a certain direction. Such laser systems developed by Pokkels are used in food, industrial and even medical applications.
For example, we have developed a system for cleaning deck plates for a confectionery factory. The bottom plates of a conveyor oven are continuously running and moving, and two laser heads clean the surface in a left-to-right direction.
For a medical company, we developed an automatic net weave cleaning system. The net weave is a titanium mesh, which is used for soft tissue regeneration and surgical reconstruction. Pokkels was tasked with developing a system for cleaning titanium wire from scales. An automatic machine pulls the net weave through and the laser head mechanically moves perpendicular to the movement of the web and cleans it.
Suitable for: those who already have automation in production and need to retrofit it with laser cleaning.
Laser cleaning automation does not necessarily require a separate device. If your company already uses process automation, we can integrate laser cleaning into your existing system as an add-on. For example, if you are using an automated welding system, it is possible to retrofit it with one or two laser heads that will clean the processing area immediately before welding and deburr the finished welded joint.
Suitable for: full-service companies.
The robot is a multi-axis system that automatically controls the cleaning process and parameter settings. Through machine vision, the robot can recognize the surface, contour it and select the optimal treatment mode. After the cleaning process, the system re-scan the surface to determine if there is any contamination. This is important because contaminants on a surface can be of varying thickness and a single laser pass may not be enough.
There are different robot form factors. For example, a 5-axis system that allows you to process parts of any shape, size and complexity of topography. For cleaning large flat objects there is a separate non-standard solution — magnetic robot.
The main advantages of an automated system:
- higher productivity
- 24/7 operation without stopping production
- easy operation
- advanced technology
- Increased machining precision