Innovative highlights in welding technology

MAG TANDEM high-capacity welding on thick components for cable cars using ROMAT® industrial robot.
(PresseBox) ( Haiger, )
In hall 13, stand D 21 of the EUROBLECH 2008 trade fair, Carl Cloos Schweisstechnik GmbH, D-Haiger, will be presenting a number of product innovations in welding machine and robotic technology.

The main focus of the exhibits is on highly efficient process technologies for welding and cutting in universal applications.

High-capacity technologies for efficient robot application

Various automation solutions will be exhibited which are representative of Cloos expertise in robot technology. High-capacity technologies, such as the Cold Process (CP) for thin plate welding, laser hybrid and TANDEM process, will demonstrate the highest efficiency in robot-supported manufacture on the most varied components:

A special feature of the new GLC 353 QUINTO CP high end pulsed arc welding machine is the very low heat input in the weld seam (Cold Process - CP). This considerably reduces component distortion and the burn off of the coating is significantly reduced when MIG-brazing coated plates. Another benefit of the new CLOOS CP technology is the very low dilution of the filler material with the base metal when hardfacing. Further advantages of the CP process are the optimised gap bridging ability and the considerably increased weld speeds particularly when welding thin aluminium plate.

The MIG/MAG TANDEM process developed by Cloos has been used successfully for many years in the most different industrial sectors throughout the world and offers unrivalled advantages for universal welding tasks. Two wires arranged closely behind each other are supplied simultaneously in a specially designed welding torch and melted in two arcs. For this to operate perfectly, two highly developed micro-processor controlled GLC 603 QUINTO pulsed arc power sources are electronically synchronised; they feed two electrically insulated weld current circuits which make it possible to set the welding parameters separately for each arc for an optimum process run. The results are excellent seam quality with low spatter, increased deposition rates and extremely high weld speeds.

In the field of innovative laser technologies in particular, Cloos will be presenting new opportunities for the MIG/MAG laser hybrid high-capacity process, an efficient combination of laser beam and arc welding processes. The newly developed laser hybrid welding head with an integrated 7th robot axis provides optimum torch orientation, thus ensuring easy tracking of the weld seam, even when changing welding direction, and a good coupling of the laser beam in the required MIG/MAG torch position. This avoids unwanted welding interruptions on contours and ensures shorter cycle times for the robotic welding process. The integrated process monitoring sensors offer excellent potential for a greater variety of seam types in universal application. The high laser capacity of up to 20 kW is an advantage particularly when welding thick components made from very different materials.

Combined with the new synergy-controlled pulsed arc power sources in the QINEO® PULSE series, Cloos will be demonstrating the high-capacity process RAPID WELD: As a result of the extremely constricted high capacity spray arc deep penetration with high deposition rates can be achieved at high wire feed speeds. The process is particularly suitable for high capacity welding of thick walled steels.

Offline programmed plasma cutting

A flexible overhead mounted ROMAT® 320 industrial robot will be demonstrating in another robot station high capacity plasma cutting using offline programming.

The 280 A plasma power source type HiFocus 280 is equipped with a swirl-gas fine focus torch and cuts bevels with angles between 0 and 45° quickly and with a high quality, but low oxygen consumption and associated costs. Therefore both mild steel and high-alloy steel with material thicknesses of 0.5 to 50 mm can be cut cleanly and burr-free. For the weld seam preparation on unalloyed steel the oxygen cutting technology ensures metallurgically perfect cutting surfaces which do not require cost-intensive rework. Plasma cutting with HiFocus technology has a quality similar to the laser process and a very high cutting speed.

Using the MOSES offline programming system, robot cutting and welding tasks can be programmed in seconds with only a few clicks of the mouse. The system can automatically calculate even complex tube penetrations and cuts and generate complete robot programs - including synchronous control of component positioners and measurement of component tolerances by the robot. MOSES can generate cut outs on tubes, containers and base plates with weld seam preparation as efficiently as the welding paths when welding tube sockets. Cutting using Cloos robots will become more economical even for the smallest production batches.

9-axis robot welding system with laser sensors

High-capacity Cloos laser sensors will be demonstrated in a 9-axis robot welding system. The ROMAT® 350 industrial robot is also equipped with a new 1.5 m linear track which significantly extends the robot working range for optimum operation.

The CSE sensors are non contact, optical measuring systems for seam tracking and determination of weld position/geometry when robot welding. They operate on the basis of a distance measurement using a low-capacity laser beam (up to max. 50 mW). The search process of the CSE sensor is effected offline, i.e. before the actual welding starts. The workpiece is scanned, the return signal is electronically evaluated and significant positions are recognized. During welding the weld parameters are adapted in line with the previously determined seam geometry.

The new QINEO® machine generation - highly efficient for manual and automated applications

As a special highlight of the exhibition Cloos are presenting two versions of their new, modular welding power sources with synergy mode from the QINEO® series:

The manual QINEO® STEP welding machine from 180 - 600 A is specially designed for use in industry and commerce. In synergic operation mode the welder can use the factory-programmed parameter settings (synergic characteristic curves), where - depending on the step-switch position - all the adjustments relevant to the welding process are stored. The fine adjustment of the arc can be achieved by simply turning the adjusting knob.

The new step-switch series is available in compact design or in the capacity range from 350 Amp and above with a separate wire drive unit for an even larger work radius. If more flexibility is required, operation can be carried out on the remote control. The QINEO® STEP is available in the versions Eco or Master (thyristor-regulated throttle) and can be gas or water cooled according to the requirement. All systems guarantee optimum ignition characteristics with low spatter and a quiet and stable arc, and provide excellent weld seam quality when welding with short or spray arc.

The new, infinitely adjustable pulsed arc welding machines in the QINEO® PULSE series from 350 - 600 A will be presented for the first time at this exhibition; they are also suitable for automated welding solutions. The machines are available as compact units or with a separate wire drive.

The parameters for all standard gas/base metal combinations and wire diameters are stored as synergic characteristic curves in a data base in the power source. Optimisation of these settings - a unique innovation - is made possible by two fine adjustments. The "Arc Length" function provides a fine adjustment option for arc length and the arc dynamics can be fine-tuned with "Arc Dynamic" function.

For user-specific processes a job memory for 999 individual jobs is available. An operating panel which can optionally be located in the power source, in the manual wire drive unit or in an external housing, can be flexibly adapted to the corresponding welding task.

The design of the automated QINEO® PULSE machines provides interfaces for ProfiBUS, ProfiNET, DeviceNET, Interbus and other bus systems for external control of the welding system. A universal Open Machine Interface completes the machine interface options offered. The internal CAN-BUS interface ensures that other new interfaces can be adapted in the future.

With the following process functions the QINEO® PULSE series provides many benefits for automated welding:

The CONTROL WELD process guarantees low specific heat input and good gap bridging ability. As a result it is suitable for welding thin plate using mixed gas or CO2.

With the VARI WELD function the easy to control pulsed arc provides a weld pool which is easily controllable and an extremely low spatter drop transfer. This process also enables very stable arc conditions at varying external conditions and is suitable for welding C-steel, aluminium and chrome-nickel steels, as well as for MIG brazing.

The SPEED WELD process offers a focussed pulse arc with medium to high deposition rates. At high weld speeds good penetration depths and excellent side wall fusion can be achieved on medium to high plate thicknesses.

The RAPID WELD process offers particular advantages for welding thick walled steels. A highly constricted high capacity spray arc achieves high deposition rates with high wire feed speeds and deep penetration.

With the DUO PULSE function a change in the heat input into the arc causes a specific heat transfer and an improved gap bridging ability as well as a uniform rippled weld seam surface. The process is particularly suitable for all steels and aluminium.
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