The need for greater flexibility in automotive manufacturing is already influencing investment decisions within OEMs but also has major implications for the supply chain. Automotive Manufacturing Solutions (AMS) spoke to Tanja Vainio, Managing Director, Business Line Automotive Tier 1, Robotics and Discrete Automation Business at ABB about the challenges ahead and the available solutions.
The Ford Transmission Plant in Livonia, Michigan, has been the location for a major innovation in automotive assembly operations, utilising AI to support the use of a robot in a particular automated assembly role. Mike Farish reports
The manufacturing industry is on the cusp of a revolution, where investment is led by software rather than hardware. That in turn enables a raft of new possibilities in creating the factory of the future, according to experts from Audi, ABB and Cosmo Tech.
As automotive OEMs digitalise and connect factories, hear how the Audi Production Lab, ABB and Cosmotech are using real-time data, smart software and advanced automation to reshape vehicle production processes.
The OEM has developed a smart handling system at its Vrchlabí plant for the pick-and-place robots handling forged transmission shafts
As the automotive industry electrifies, manufacturing is changing dramatically and OEMs are using big data to keep pace with that change. Increasingly moving into the world of tech, old quality control processes may no longer suffice since a lot of EV components cannot be reworked like traditional equivalents. Manufacturing has to be ultra-precise like never before.
In a fast-changing industry, OEM production operations must be highly flexible to remain competitive. ABB discusses how the latest automation systems can support this requirement and the need for a mind-set change in the approach to facility planning
For the production of the new C-class, Mercedes has taken the opportunity to add flexibility by way of cellular manufacturing in the body shop and with so-called ‘TecLines’ for assembly.
Spanish carmaker Seat has started using two autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) at its plant in Martorell for the picking of parts from its onsite storage warehouses.
Electric vehicles bring with them high development costs and large expenses for retooling plants. To get around that, OEMs and tier suppliers must work together to develop flexible, modular production systems, according to panellists from ZF and ABB at last week’s AMS Livestream on electrification.
In the first part of our Electrifying Production Livestream series, AMS explores how vehicle electrification is changing major tier-1 suppliers’ manufacturing engineering and design, plant equipment and manufacturing strategies. Featuring experts from automotive suppliers and production specialists including Gestamp and ZF, Henkel and ABB.
The challenges of a transition from ICE to EV production for automotive manufacturers and the implications for assembly plants
As automotive manufacturers make the transition to electric propulsion, the challenges they face from compressed development timescales, ever tightening regulatory limits and technology churn, mean they must adapt very quickly to change. Automotive Manufacturing Solutions spoke to Patrick Matthews, ABB Robotics head of powertrain for their OEM automotive division, on how ABB’s approach can help support OEMs through the transition process while retaining the ability to accommodate changes in production requirements
Robotics have enabled major productivity gains in manufacturing, but as the technology becomes more affordable and labour gets harder to find and more expensive, it could start to play a bigger role in the plant logistics and warehousing, too, helping workers do their jobs more safely and quickly.
The Compliant Orbital Sander is the ideal solution for robotic surface treatment.
ABB explores how condition-based maintenance can keep car plant robots in good working order to increase productivity and minimise downtime
Experts from BMW, Ford, Symbio Robotics and Cosmo Tech discussed how artificial intelligence (AI) and automation in automotive production need fast ramp-up times and adoption by employees to succeed. High-quality data and use of simulation are also key.
The latest AMS edition is out with a special focus on automation opportunities, including for artificial intelligence and cobots. The issue features in-depth insight on robotics and new processes, with interviews featuring BMW, Fraunhofer, Drishti and many more.
A flexible software-first approach is the answer to improve the real-time control of industrial robots and future-proof manufacturing lines, say experts at Symbio Robotics
Assembly operations still offer a lot of potential for automation. A new project aims to take machine learning to the next level