Benefits of Robotic Welding
The welding process fuses two or more separate workpieces into a single piece using heat and pressure to create a strong joint as the weld cools and hardens. At Ohio Valley Manufacturing, we specialize in robotic welding, an automated process that produces reliable and repeatable welds. Typically faster and more accurate than manual welding, robotic welding offers a safe and effective means to handle complex and high-volume welding projects.
Robotic Welding vs. Manual Welding
Manual welding requires a skilled welder to operate the welding equipment and manipulate the workpieces by hand. While more manufacturers have turned to robotic welding, manual welding still plays an essential role in lower-volume production, prototyping, one-off projects, and more. Manual welding offers superior flexibility because human operators have better awareness and decision-making capabilities than automated equipment.
Robotic welding processes use welding tools and robotic arms to handle welding tasks. The two different types of robotic welding used in manufacturing include:
- Fully automated welding: Robotic arms guide the separate pieces into position and hold them, while a robotically controlled welding tool uses heat and pressure to connect them.
- Semi-automated welding: Autonomous tools handle the actual welding process per a design plan or instructions. A human employee loads the unwelded pieces and then moves the welded workpiece to the next step of the manufacturing process after welding is complete.
Benefits of Robotic Welding
Both fully automated and semi-automated welding processes offer distinct advantages over manual welding, especially in today’s manufacturing environment. Some of the advantages provided by robotic welding include:
- High-Quality Welds: Automated robotic systems follow programmed instructions to create welds within very tight tolerances. Each weld will be nearly seamless, with no gaps, weak points, or blemishes. This precision also reduces the labor required for potential cleanup and finishing processes.
- Consistent Welds: Not only will each weld be relatively free of imperfections, but robotic welding tools can also create identical welds for dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of parts — a crucial capability for mass production.
- Safety: Robotic tools handle each step of moving, holding, and welding potentially sharp or heavy metal pieces, especially during fully automated processes. Robotic handling mitigates the risk of injury for technicians involved in the project.
- Speed: Robotic systems work faster and perform longer than manual welders, ultimately shortening lead times on large-volume welding projects.
- Material Efficiency: Robotic welding processes are less likely to make errors or waste welding materials. A lower error rate results in reduced scrap metal, making the process more efficient, greener, and more cost-effective per weld.
- Long-Term Affordability: Robotic welding has high initial expenses, but the process gains economies of scale over large orders, eventually lowering the cost per unit over manual welding. The reduced material waste and lower labor requirements also contribute to the affordability of robotic welding over time.
Common Applications for Robotic Welding
Robotic welding creates and repairs parts across an expansive range of industries. Markets that increasingly rely on robotic welding include:
- Agriculture (heavy equipment components, trailer parts, outdoor power equipment)
- Automotive (on- and off-highway vehicle and truck parts)
- General industry (material handling components and equipment
- Petrochemical (chemical processing systems)
Standard Materials for Robotic Welding
At Ohio Valley Manufacturing, we work with numerous metals and alloys, including:
- Carbon steel
- Cast Iron
- Exotic metals
- Stainless steel
Ohio Valley Manufacturing Is Your Robotic Welding Manufacturer
Ohio Valley Manufacturing is committed to quality. Our company is ISO 9001:2015-certified, and we maintain extensive quality management and quality control processes for every service we offer. We serve an array of industries with precision robotic welding services to create fast and reliable welded parts.
Contact us today to learn more about our capabilities.