Provide safety through system integration, says CNC Solutions

Handling sheet metal parts for this punching and forming operation was causing an unacceptable number of worker injuries until CNC Solutions automated the process with robotics and reduced number of times employees handled sharp-edged parts.

06/29/2010


Wisconsin-based CNC Solutions is an engineering company focused on electrical and mechanical systems integration, factory automation, and safety. It applies system integration technology to provide quality plant automation solutions for machine and process controls.

Using robotics, CNC Solutions automated handling sheet metal parts for this punching and forming operation reducing the number of times employees handled sharp-edged parts, downtime and repetitive motion injuries.The company believes automation is the key to staying competitive, to providing safety, and to achieving a fast return on investment. Safety plays an important role in the success of a business by helping increase productivity and profitability. Employee injuries affect downtime and increase workmen’s compensation claims and insurance rates, which in turn impact the bottom line.

In one example, a customer was having material handling issues caused by the size and weight of their sheet metal blanks. Each operation required two people to handle the product. The process created safety hazards because of the sharp sheet metal edges of the blanks and caused multiple Workman’s Compensation claims. In addition, the operation was very labor intensive.

The CNC Solutions goal for this system was to reduce the amount of material handling required and have only one person operate the system in a safe manner. The integrator accomplished this by reducing the number of times the product was physically touched from eight to zero. The product is now introduced from a previous operation by a robot directly into the cell in a stacked form. A robotic system with various stations processes the parts as needed and stacks them for the next operation.

Robotic automation delivers uninterrupted production, virtually eliminating downtime and repetitive motion injuries. The operator is responsible for entering the part number into the HMI system and for moving the stacked parts in and out of the cell on wheeled carts. This change has reduced operator injury. Perimeter guarding also was added, including access gates and door interlocks for added safety. The new system not only saves labor and material handling, but produces a more consistent product at a higher rate than the previous manual system.

- CNC Solutions, Watertown, WI -- www.cncsolutionsllc.com

See the Control Engineering System Integration channel at www.controleng.com.



No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
World-class manufacturing: A recipe for success: Finding the right mix for a salad dressing line; 2015 Salary Survey: Manufacturing slump dims enthusiasm
2015 Top Plant: Phoenix Contact, Middletown, Pa.; 2015 Best Practices: Automation, Electrical Safety, Electrical Systems, Pneumatics, Material Handling, Mechanical Systems
A cool solution: Collaboration, chemistry leads to foundry coat product development; See the 2015 Product of the Year Finalists
Digital oilfields: Integrated HMI/SCADA systems enable smarter data acquisition; Real-world impact of simulation; Electric actuator technology prospers in production fields
Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Getting ready for industrial IoT; Visualizing the (applied) automation continuum; Preventing VFD faults and failures; Using wireless for closed-loop applications
Migrating industrial networks; Tracking HMI advances; Making the right automation changes
Understanding transfer switch operation; Coordinating protective devices; Analyzing NEC 2014 changes; Cooling data centers

Annual Salary Survey

After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.

The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.

Read more: 2014 Salary Survey: Confidence rises amid the challenges

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.