Machine builders, system designers and project engineers can now configure and create new handling system solutions in record time using the Handling Guide Online from industrial automation specialists Festo.
The Handling Guide Online (HGO) cuts design, assembly and delivery times from nearly two months to just a few weeks. These efficiencies are thanks to the integration of the configuration and ordering platform within Festo’s online product catalogue. This integration enables customers to create a ready-toinstall handling system: whether for a single-axis system, a 2D linear and planar surface gantry or a 3D gantry.
Using just a few mouse clicks, the HGO delivers the right standard handling system, including CAD model, animation, and complete EPLAN schematic documentation. The individual steps – including RFQ, layout, quotation and CAD design – which previously could take 10 to 15 days can now be completed in a matter of minutes. This gives design engineers more time and space for creativity when planning and project engineering their companies’ core areas of technological expertise.
New standard products in the Festo range are also shortening parameterisation and commissioning times. Machine and system builders are thus able to reduce their time to complete integrated handling systems by around 70%.
A single click transmits the customised solution order to Festo. The company’s specialists are able to build a personalised system from a large library of modular elements and then deliver it ready-to-install, together with all user documentation in accordance with the EU Machinery Directive, directly to the machine or plant in no time at all.
The HGO offering includes high-speed Cartesian robots based on the “T-handler” type EXCT for up to 90 picks a minute, as well as planar surface gantries based on the “H-handlers” EXCH series, which can achieve cycle rates of 100 picks a minute. The extremely compact planar surface gantries and three-dimensional gantries of the EXCM series are ideal for desktop-sized applications and particularly suited to small parts assembly, electronics manufacturing or laboratory processes.
Festo’s HGO software suite means that system designers and machine builders can not only plan extremely compact or extremely dynamic Cartesian robots using the intuitive configuration and ordering software, but they can also benefit from the circuit diagram service from Eplan and commissioning files.
For instance, creating an Eplan project manually can take several hours and, depending on the complexity, can be prone to user errors. Schematic Solution automates many of the process steps and therefore frees up time, as well as documenting projects without any errors. The electrical circuit and pneumatic diagrams can be purchased as a complete Eplan project and downloaded in a choice of formats including PDF via Schematic Solution in the Festo online purchasing platform “App World”.
Data is managed consistently throughout the entire process, resulting in an Eplan project with a unique system ID for each individual handling system. Error-free documentation for the configured handling system with a mechatronic image of the configured valve terminals and electrical terminals such as CPX, VTSA or MPA is generated at the touch of a button. Thanks to the integration of the circuit diagram service, configuring handling systems is not only more reliable, but also less expensive because of valuable time saved.
In addition, Festo now offers motion control files for faster system commissioning. The files are created individually on the basis of the user input and the calculated system, and can be loaded directly into the motor controller. The commissioning file contains the set of values specifically for the handling system, consisting of axis dimensions, motor characteristics, feed constants and dynamic data. The controller settings are calculated on the system parameters e.g. payload, dead weight and the system dynamics entered by the user.
Driving digitalisation forward
The Handling Guide Online is the latest example of how Festo combines its extensive knowledge of industrial applications with the latest developments in information technology to realise online applications for industrial automation practice. Steve Sands from Festo UK says:
“HGO is a great example of digitalisation in action. It directly saves users time and money, optimising solutions entirely around the customers‘ application parameters and linking extensive digital resources to the physical world. Festo is committed to driving digitalisation forward and supporting its customers as they enter the age of Industry 4.0. Tools like the Handling Guide Online show how a digital shadow or twin can be simply created and utilised throughout the machine life cycle: from information procurement, system configuration, to ordering, assembly and delivery, and on to documentation, commissioning and maintenance.”
For more information about the HGO and how it can save time, visit:www.festo.ie/hgo