Arbotist - Robots Selections Criteria For Automation Robotics Applications

Choosing a right robot for the work is a very challenging task. To pick a robot, firstly, evaluate the application’s needs. That starts with profiling the job’s load, orientation, speed, travel, precision, environment and duty cycle, sometimes called LOSTPED parameters. This is a general guideline on certain key parameters and when a process gets more complicated, more parameters should also be considered.

1. Load

  • A robot’s load capacity as defined by the manufacturer must exceed the total weight of the payload including any tooling at the end of the robot arm
  • Even when a heavy load is within a robot’s capacity, it can degrade precision

2. Orientation

  • Depends on how the robot is mounted and how it situates parts or products being moved
  • The goal is to match the robot’s footprint to the work areas and determine the number of axis required

3. Travel & Speed

  • Along with load ratings, most manufacturer also list travel and speed ratings in their datasheets
  • One key consideration when choosing robots for pick-and-place applications is acceleration times over significant distance or reach
  • Depending on types of Robots selected, speed and distance are further customizable by choice of belt, linear motor, or ball-screw actuator
  • Articulating arms are typically pre-designed for a given reach, such as 500 mm, 800mm and etc

4. Precision

  • The precision can be described as the capacity of the robot to reach the exact same position each and every time it completes a routine, repeatably and accurately
  • Most of the time, the robot can repeat inside 0.5mm and sometimes even more
  • For example, if the robot is needed to build an electronic circuit board, may want to have a super repeatable robot but if the application is quite rough, the robot doesn't need to be that precise

5. Environment

  • Two factors that dictate the best robot are the working envelope’s ambient environment and hazards in the space itself
  • Whether a robot will go in a clean room is generally not an issue because all robot types are manufactured in clean-room versions

6. DutyCycle

  • The amount of time it takes to complete one cycle of operation
  • Robots that run continuously 24/7 will reach end of life sooner than those running only 8-hr days, five days a week.
  • Clarify the issues in advance, and get robots with long lubrication intervals and low maintenance requirements to prevent aggravation later

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