June 21, 2010 ABB Robotics is introducing WeldGuide III, an adaptive sensing system that performs weld seam joint tracking during the welding process, identifying variations in the weld joints to proactively correct the robotic torch path. Utilizing voltage and current sensors, the system takes real-time measurements through the welding arc to make any adjustments necessary to keep the robotic welding torch in the joint path no matter the programming. A combination of hardware and software specifically designed for ABBs newer IRC5 controller, WeldGuide III is half the price and easier to implement than the Advance Weld Controller (AWC) system that ABB has used since 1994. WeldGuide III requires less initial programming than traditional robotic welding control systems and is ideal for applications on heavy weldments. WeldGuide III is especially effective for:
Heavy deposition welds where a 1 to 2 mm weave pattern must be used to fill the gap between the parts
Applications where the welding seam location moves slightly or more from part to part
Parts where multiple passes are required to complete the weld In such heavy, high heat welds WeldGuide III provides more precise path accuracy and better weld integrity than would be achieved with standard welding systems. With the tracking system automatically adapting to the part, WeldGuide III provides more consistent welds, even on parts where there is considerable part variation, providing far better throughput and less re-weld situations.WeldGuide III is a direct result of consistent input from our key heavy welding integrators and customers, said Joe Campbell, vice president sales and marketing for ABB Robotics, North America. Welding and metal fabrication are primary growth areas for robotics and ABB will continue to develop best-in-class robots and control systems to serve these markets. WeldGuide III is so easy to use and cost effective that it is even appropriate for the smallest job shops. Primary application areas for WeldGuide III on ABB robotic welding systems include off-highway and agricultural equipment, transportation, defense, and other manufacturers that fabricate large, heavy metal parts requiring longer, wider welds. About ABB, Inc. ABB is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve their performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 117,000 people. About ABB Robotics ABB Robotics is a leading supplier of industrial robots also providing robot software, peripheral equipment, modular manufacturing cells and service for tasks such as welding, handling, assembly, painting and finishing, picking, packing, palletizing and machine tending. Key markets include automotive, plastics, metal fabrication, foundry, electronics, pharmaceutical and food and beverage industries. A strong customer focus helps manufacturers improve productivity, product quality and worker safety. ABB has installed more than 160,000 robots worldwide.