You are using Internet Explorer 11 or earlier, this browser is no longer supported by this website. We suggest to use a modern browser.
High-performance products need to be manufactured at the absolute highest level. Keeping all parts clean is an essential aspect of maintaining the highest quality. Our racing shocks components need to be completely clean for the assembly. thyssenkrupp Bilstein of America now has a new robot helper for that who takes over the cleaning of the shock absorber tubes and helps increasing the efficiency of our production.
The robot, fondly dubbed "Ivan" by the employees, was completely designed and assembled in-house to meet the requirements of our plant in San Diego, California. In the facility in San Diego our suspension experts develop and build more than 100 different types of Bilstein’s top of the line racing shocks for the aftermarket. This wide range of parts is a big challenge when it comes to automating the production processes. Because of the different sizes of the components a regular robot was no option, thus an individual solution with a collaborative robot (cobot) had to be designed. Manufacturing Process Engineer Riley McConaughey and Daniel Taughinbaugh teamed up with their colleagues Herman Baker and Craig Mathew from Bilstein’s own Industry 5.0 team of our plant in Hamilton, Ohio, to come up with the cobots stellar programming. Thanks to the incredible team effort, the whole programming could be done in-house. Ivan is capable of handling high mix manufacturing and our requirements with ease. After installing the cobot to the production floor, Ivan works seamlessly with the operators. He adjusts its operation radius and cleaning time according to the preset product line. The robot is capable of supporting two production lines and four assembly tables simultaneously. Thereby, the cobot fits perfectly into production processes and takes over non-ergonomic work for its human colleagues.
This remarkable team effort is an excellent demonstration of how employee initiative and management support can lead to great solutions.