The CAPALEX Collaborative Robot
Essentially a Cobot is a form of robotics designed to work collaboratively with humans in a shared workspace or where humans and robots are in close proximity. Unlike industrial robots a Cobot is equipped with sensors that will slow it down and / or stop it when close to, or in contact with, an operator.
The concept being that the Cobot will work independently, continuously, totally consistently, lights-out, weekends, no lunch breaks, require minimal re-programming of existing CNC programmes and can be rapidly established into our existing CNC operations.
The mounting for the UR10 Cobot was developed at Capalex and comes with a simple 4-bolt mounting flange and interface panel. The concept of the mounting table was to enable the Cobot to be moved between CNC machines and to provide an indexed series of positions from which raw material can be located, collected and then the finished work returned to a defined position.
To hold the work, we selected Airvise pneumatic vices from Boise, Idaho. The vices are operated by an air supply controlled via electric over pneumatic valves mounted on the Cobot table. The electrical control voltage is supplied directly from the UR control station and is part of the Cobot programme.
The Capalex Cobot was successfully installed in 3rd quarter 2022 and is another example of the investment and improvement Capalex have introduced in their machining capability to support our Aluminium Extrusion business established in 1979.