058 – “Robotic Automation for ESOH Risk Reduction, Throughput Increase, and Improved Quality”

Author: Shane Groves
Company: USAF
Phone: (478) 335-6482
Email: shane.groves@us.af.mil

  • When properly specified and integrated, commercial off the shelf (COTS), articulated arm, robotic systems can provide many benefits to depot operations.
  • ESOH risk reduction for operators in hazardous environments including paint, depaint, thermal spray, surface prep, grinding, and milling. Utilizing robotics can limit exposure to chemicals, toxins, extreme heat, dust, and injuries.
  • Improved product quality by leveraging the integral repeatability of robots. Once developed and programmed, the process will be carried out the same way every time.
  • Increased production output by allowing the robots to operate during breaks and during shift changes. Additionally, some processes can simply be accomplished faster utilizing robotics due to their ability to overcome load and reach constraints that operators face.
  • Increased flexibility by utilizing multiple end efforts or end of arm tooling (EOAT), allowing one robot to perform multiple processes. Additionally, as workloads change EOATs can be modified or replaced at a fraction of the cost a new system.
  • Increased supportability as opposed to custom “robots” and gantries. The use of COTS equipment ensures maximum support from local contractors and vendors. Standardization ensures maximum organic support.
  • Robins CMXG has realized these benefits through a diverse group of robotic processes. We are currently employing robotics in 17 different processes, with contracts awarded for 6 additional uses, and plans to expand that to another 6 for a total of 42 robotic systems performing 29 different processes.

Current: Painting
Microwave Mapping
FPI Blade Processing
Walnut Media Blasting
Glass Media Blasting
Aluminum Oxide Media Blasting
Plastic Media Blasting
Flash Jet
Low Plasticity Burnishing
HVOF Thermal Spray
Cold Spray
Belt Grinding
High Pressure Water Blasting
Shot Peen
Wing Defastening