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Flexible parts feeder compatible with all FANUC robots

Task
Offer and promote electronic, automotive, cosmetic, medical and food market solutions that are as lean, flexible and modular as possible. For a usage that goes beyond the life cycle of the product, such as the FlexiBowl®: an innovative flexible feeder.

Solution
The solution is FlexiBowl®, a flexible parts feeder that is compatible with every FANUC robot and their vision systems. FlexiBowl® solution is highly versatile and is able to feed parts with every geometry, surface and material.

Result
ARS is known for innovative solutions thanks to its team of professionals, whose experiences range from robotics, to machine vision, to non-destructive x-ray technology. The benefit of FlexiBowl® lies in the simultaneous performance of hopper (dropping), feeder (separating) and robot (picking). FANUC has always been extremely helpful in any application study, thereby reducing times and necessary resources to verify the feasibility of any possible project.

The Italian company ARS is a worldwide supplier of flexible automation systems located in Arezzo, Tuscany. They are known for innovative solutions thanks to its team of professionals, whose experiences range from robotics, to machine vision, to non-destructive x-ray technology.

Over the years, ARS has developed significant experience in supplying industrial automation technologies for the assembly process, material handling, packing and quality inspection. ARS technologies are applied in many important industries: electronic, automotive, cosmetic, medical and food market.

They promote solutions that are as lean, flexible and modular as possible. For a usage that goes beyond the life cycle of the product, such as the FlexiBowl®: an innovative flexible feeder. The goal is to ensure customised, technologically advanced and flexible solutions, meeting current and future demand in a simple and fast way, always ensuring high-quality performances and efficiency.

They work together with their customers to increase their competitiveness, by reducing inefficiencies, idle times and improve products quality. FANUC has always been extremely helpful in any application study, thereby reducing times and necessary resources to verify the feasibility of any possible project. They support the majority of communication protocols, they integrate easily with all equipment, and they conform to all the different requests that might be presented with.

FlexiBowl® is a flexible parts feeder that is compatible with every FANUC robot and their vision systems. Entire families of parts within 1-250 mm and 1-250 g can be handled by a single FlexiBowl® replacing a whole set of vibrating bowl feeders. The solution is highly versatile and is able to feed parts with every geometry, surface and material. Its lack of dedicated tooling and its easy-to-use and intuitive programming allows quick and multiple product changeovers inside the same work shift. Application fields range from Cosmetics to Automotive, Medical, Electrical components and many more. The benefits lie in the simultaneous performance of hopper (dropping), feeder (separating) and robot (picking).           

It falls into the CIRCULAR SYSTEM category, where dropping, separating and picking are simultaneous and carried out on dedicated and independent sectors of the disc. This way the feed rate improves significantly.

Lastly, one of FlexiBowl® most interesting features is that it can handle large and heavy parts with a 7 kg maximum payload. FlexiBowl® can be controlled in multiple ways and all are supported by FANUC:  I/O inputs and digital outputs, socket TCP, Ethernet IP.

The FANUC robots models M-1iA and M-2iA, the LR Mate 200iD, the SCARA SR-3iA and SR-6iA are mostly used for the solution. Frequently also the iRVision system is implemented. This is due to the reliability of FANUC, the openness to commercial introduction, efficient technical support as well as the top-quality performance.

FANUC allows ARS to develop customised interfaces, which make both the device integration and programming easier and smoother. In particular, ARS have developed a plug-in that allows to create a database, without writing lines of code each time. Its high flexibility in parametrization makes it adaptable to any application requirement.

FANUC robots, particularly the anthropomorphic LR Mate 200iD and the SCARA SR-3iA and SR-6iA, are able to satisfy the compelling productive needs that are often required in ARS applications.

Thanks to the high compatibility with FANUC robots and vision systems, they are able to use the circular tracking feature, which allows a continuous feeding and the use of their feeder in high-frequency applications.

FlexiBowl® is integrated throughout the world; therefore using FANUC robots allows ARS to guarantee their customers an extremely quick and vastly spread software and hardware support.