The movement of the gold in the furnace, the manipulation of the pouring process and the bar conveying and handling system are all precisely controlled using the robotic control system and the SCARA robot. The melting furnaces operate at 1300°C, so the robots must be capable of withstanding the heat.
The system is the result of intensive research and development by Johnson Matthey, Shibaura and Evershed Robotics. Shortly after the new line was opened, Johnson Matthey was presented with an award for innovation in use of Robotics. Speaking about the gold production line, a member of Johnson Matthey’s Weighing and Automation Department, said ‘’This application lends itself to automation for all manner of reasons and clearly the value and nature of the material demands quality, precision and reliability. After much research we found the Shibaura SCARA robots to be the most suitable for our application. The robots lead in what is clearly recognised as the next major leap forward in cost effective manufacturing."
The Shibaura high speed, high accuracy SCARA robots are ideally suited for applications involving automatic assembly, testing, pick and place, palletising, machine loading, adhesive/sealing operations, as well as others where accuracy and repeatability bring about cost savings with higher quality. Payloads of up to 40Kg and speeds in excess of 5m/s can be achieved, yet with maintained repeatability within a tolerance 0.03mm.
Evershed Robotics has sold and supported Shibaura robots since 1982 and is Shibaura’s longest serving European robotics partner. The company has contributed significant technical expertise in advanced control systems and automation engineering to the design and construction of Johnson Matthey’s truly ‘’leading edge’’ robotics installation. Shibaura robots are available throughout Europe from Shibaura’s exclusive partner TM Robotics (Europe) Limited.
Discover the full SCARA range from TM Robotics here.