Laser hybrid welding with gantry robots

At its Pasching site in Austria, Trumpf, a leading manufacturer of production engineering and medical technology, is setting up a new production complex for laser hybrid welding. Machine frames with large surface areas are produced in the machine. Güdel is providing the roboMover gantry system with dimensions of 7 x 10 x 5.6 meters.

Laser hybrid welding is a combined welding process offering the advantages of good gap bridging, simple weld preparation and concentrated heat input, deep welding penetration and high speed. The laser beam heats the surface of the workpiece in question to vaporization temperature. Thanks to the deep penetration of the vapor column, it is possible to achieve the desired welding results in the form of deep and narrow weld penetration.

The special aspect of the gantry travel path concerns the special, high rigidity of the axes. This is the only way that the laser beam can be accurately controlled. There are no vibrations in the system that might result in the laser beam being deflected. Also, the rapid change of position during the machining process and the associated vibrations have no effect on the overall system or the laser process. To achieve this, Güdel has implemented the required natural frequency of the gantry system of at least 15 Hz.

The floor axes and vertical axes work in master/slave mode. In this unidirectional operating principle, there is no mechanical connection of the drive units by a transmission shaft in which the first drive (master) controls the second (slave). High-precision planetary gearboxes from Güdel are used in all axes. The planetary gearboxes are characterized by high rigidity and power density, and ensure there is additional reliability in the application results. Güdel's roboMover gantry system permits effective strokes of 4.6 x 6.1 and 1.85 meters.

Both the integrator Yaskawa and the end-user Trumpf were highly satisfied with the execution and installation by Güdel. The highly demanding technical requirements that had been committed to were met in full measure. In particular, the plant managers at Trumpf praised the rapid setup installation during the inauguration ceremony. In particular, Güdel's professional approach to setting up and aligning the axes proved to be a winning formula, as well as the fact that everything worked correctly right from the first.

Following this success, Yaskawa is also planning to offer this solution to other customers. Potential applications have been identified in process applications for large workpieces in particular. In this case, Güdel systems are not restricted to welding applications. The gantry travel path is independent from the application and can also be used for milling, polishing or even gluing, to name only a few examples.

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