Mitsubishi produces new cobot

By Jim Cornall contact

- Last updated on GMT

Humans collaborating with robots in manufacturing processes should be provided with maximum safety combined with ease of use, while meeting new requirements for adequate distancing of workers in manufacturing sites, all of which can be delivered with the latest cobot, the MELFA ASSISTA from Mitsubishi Electric. Pic: Mitsubishi Electric
Humans collaborating with robots in manufacturing processes should be provided with maximum safety combined with ease of use, while meeting new requirements for adequate distancing of workers in manufacturing sites, all of which can be delivered with the latest cobot, the MELFA ASSISTA from Mitsubishi Electric. Pic: Mitsubishi Electric

Related tags: Automation, Robot, Mitsubishi Corporation

Mitsubishi Electric’s new collaborative robot, the MELFA ASSISTA, has been developed to work alongside human operators without the need for guards or safety fences, while meeting requirements for adequate distancing of workers in manufacturing sites.

The company said the cobot offers maximum safety and durability combined with ease of use and programming, while maintaining high positional repeatability.

The cobot meets the needs of both standard industrial and environmentally sensitive applications – for example, it can be supplied with certified NSF H1 grease (National Sanitation Foundation guidelines) for applications such as the food and beverage sector.

It can perform complex and delicate assembly tasks, precise work holding or repetitive pick and place operations with the highest levels of consistency and reliability while responding flexibly to rapidly changing business environments and social needs. Application examples include working alongside human operators in automotive assembly tasks or performing packaging operations on production lines.

Set-up of the cobot is simplified using direct teach functionality where the user holds the arm and moves it to each required position; the position is then saved by pressing a button on the keypad built into the cobot arm. The process is both time-saving and intuitive for operators.

This complements the visual programming software used for more complex operations - the RT Visualbox package allows for both drag and drop motion functions and individual adjustments to each movement. This means costs for additional robot programming can be saved, as operators can alter set ups without specialized robot expertise.

The MELFA ASSISTA cobot has a high repeat accuracy of ±0.03mm by a rated payload of 5kg and reach radius of 910 mm. It enables increased product quality, which correspondingly reduces the time overhead required for quality control, ensuring higher overall quality standards.

The company said a further benefit is the ability to switch it between collaborative mode – where it operates at the slower speeds typical of a cobot – and a higher speed mode for use in a more industrial ‘cooperative production’ environment. This ensures maximum application flexibility.

Fault diagnostics and operational state are also shown by a six-color LED ring mounted around the robot’s ‘forearm,’ which is always visible.

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