Manufacturing / Production Technology, Hardware & Services


Flexible automation for end-of-line and light mechanical assembly

25 July 2007 Manufacturing / Production Technology, Hardware & Services

The Polaris Assembly Cell from Universal Instruments solves the challenges of odd form assembly in electronic manufacturing and addresses a host of light mechanical assembly processes for products as diverse as medical instruments, small automotive subassemblies, toys and games, office products and many more.

This assembly cell allows users to automate many assembly processes that usually demand labour-intensive manual assembly or expensive, dedicated equipment. Through automation, users can improve quality, reduce labour costs and even fulfill low-volume or specialised orders at a cost effective, per unit price. This puts the throughput and repeatability normally associated with high-volume manufacturing within reach.

The modular, platform design of Polaris means that users can perform several processes in a single cell, for efficient use of shop floor real estate and more effective allocation of human resources. Depending on customers' needs, operations can also be distributed across multiple cells to boost productivity. What is more, the system's flexibility means that a cell can be added to a line or moved to a different position within the line in response to changing production needs.

Precise positioning and control of placement force, combined with new tooling attachments, allows a wide variety of parts and materials to be placed and verified quickly and accurately. Odd form assembly of electronic components such as connectors, transformers, or non-standard devices can be quickly and easily migrated onto the Polaris Servo-Gripper machine. This versatile platform is a cost-effective solution to meet the need to automate reflow odd form assembly, wave solder odd form assembly, or final product assembly.

General mechanical assembly tasks, including adhesive dispensing, vision inspection, driving screws, pick-and-place, and packaging are ideal for the Polaris Multi-Process cell. Its wide range of capabilities makes it a wise investment for today's diverse manufacturing requirements. The Polaris Junior Assembly Cell offers efficient, single-process final assembly for low-end robotic and semi-automatic processes. It features a scalable cell width with common controls, side covers, and frame structure for a low-cost solution with faster lead times than custom cells.

In addition to scalability, the standard tool interfaces and interchangeable grippers and feeders of the Polaris Assembly Cell allow users to easily reconfigure their machine after completing a project, reducing total cost of ownership and maximising return on investment. Tools can be added or replaced easily and quickly based on application requirements. If custom tooling is required, it can be designed as a module to fit within the platform, eliminating the need for a customised cell. Because the Polaris platform is easy to reconfigure, assembly processes can quickly be adapted in response to design changes. Pre-production and prototype samples can be assembled using the target equipment, allowing an accurate assessment of product quality and throughput capability.



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