Robotics business Yaskawa unveils latest industrial lines for use within confectionery

Japanese-founded motion control and robotics firm Yaskawa has unveiled its latest range of industrial robots with a focus on smaller, flexible options, including for use within the confectionery sector, reports Neill Barston.

The company explained that its latest system is designed to meet rapidly changing manufacturing environments, with advances in automation driven in part by ‘unprecedented’ production demands amid the covid pandemic, which has seen many food sector markets experience increased sales around the world.

Furthermore, the new Motoman GP4 6-axis small industrial robot meets these requirements and is a natural ‘fit’ within the established range of Yaskawa smaller robots. It provides a payload capacity of 4kg, a maximum reach of 550mm and represents a good example of a compact and versatile robot ideally suited for assembling, transporting, boxing, sorting and inspecting small parts in industrial applications.

The GP4 reportedly achieves the highest performance in its class with a 163% faster synthesis speed as a result of the increased maximum speed capacity of each of the 6 axis (compared to the previous Motoman-MH3F model). This reduces the tact time and contributes to improving customer productivity. Thanks to maximising its reach the effective motion area in the vicinity of the robot is expanded helping to improve accessibility to the workpiece whilst saving valuable space.

In addition, it benefits from a dust-proof / drip-proof smooth arm surface including all 6 axis which meets the international protection code rating of IP67 as defined by the IEC (International Electro-Technical Commission). This reduces the accumulation of dust and liquid so the GP4 can be used in harsh environments and also for hygienic applications requiring wash-down.

Reduced set-up time and optimised emergency response is on the wish-list of most automation engineers so the single power supply cable will be appreciated. When a wire is broken, the programming pendant instantly displays the fault helping to speed-up emergency response and also simplifying maintenance. The addition of the new GP4 robot complements Yaskawa’s existing range of small robots to 6 options covering a payload capability from as little as 0.5kg and a reach of 350mm up to 8kg and a reach of 1000mm.

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