Robot arc welding

Robot welding means welding that is performed and controlled by robotic equipment. In general equipment for automatic arc welding is designed differently from that used for manual arc welding. Automatic arc welding normally involves high duty cycles, and the welding equipment must be able to operate under those conditions. In addition, the equipment components must have the necessary features and controls to interface with the main control system. 

A special kind of electrical power is required to make an arc weld. The special power is provided by a welding machine, also known as a power source. All arc welding processes use an arc welding gun or torch to transmit welding current from a welding cable to the electrode. They also provide for shielding the weld area from the atmosphere. 

The nozzle of the torch is close to the arc and will gradually pick up spatter. A torch cleaner (normally automatic) is often used in robot arc welding systems to remove the spatter. All of the continous electrode wire arc processes require an electrode feeder to feed the consumable electrode wire into the arc.   

Welding fixtures and workpiece manipulators hold and position parts to ensure precise welding by the robot. The productivity of the robot welding cell is speeded up by having an automatically rotating or switching fixture, so that the operator can be fixing one set of parts while the robot is welding another.

To be able to guarantee that the electrode tip and the tool frame are accurately known with respect to each other, the calibration process of  the TCP (Tool Center Point) is important. An automatic TCP calibration device facilitates this time consuming task.


Typical components of an integrated robotic arc welding cell:

Arc welding robot
Power source
Welding torch
Wire feeder
Welding fixtures and workpiece positioners
Torch cleaner
TCP calibration unit




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Last updated: Tuesday, November 12, 2001

Copyright 2001, All rights reserved.