126-11 Lohr, 2011-11-22

Adaptive Automation increases flexibility

The integrated FlexProfile software

The integrated FlexProfile software function adaptively adjusts all movements within the machine cycle when a process step changes in packaging machines for example.

FlexProfile software function from Rexroth adjusts movements within the machine cycle to new parameters

Ever smaller batch sizes in manufacturing can only be offset if machine operators’ set-up times are reduced. Rexroth’s Motion Logic systems accelerate the changeover to new formats or products, bringing downtimes to a minimum. When a process step changes, the integrated FlexProfile software function adaptively adjusts all movements within the machine cycle.

So far electronic cam programming has been capable of only taking account of flexible parameters within the drive communication. External events, such as the duration of thermo sealing or filling processes, had to be strictly defined by programmers. In case of changes they manually adjusted movements of all drives to the new conditions. The FlexProfile software function, now further developed by Rexroth, also takes account of time-controlled external parameters. Consequently, programming can respond to the measurement data of thermal welding stations or the cycle of scara robots and adjust the sequence of movements within the machine cycle. The software automatically calculates the impact on any axes involved, synchronizing them accordingly. So far such movements could only be implemented in subsequent cycles.

FlexProfile is part of the controller-based Motion Logic systems IndraMotion MLC and IndraLogic XLC from Rexroth, using higher-order laws of motion. Minimized jerk movements and accelerations serve to protect the mechanics. Machine availability increases by reduced set-up times during changeover to new formats or products.

Rexroth has developed the graphics-based software tool CamBuilder within the IndraWorks engineering environment for simple FlexProfile implementation. Programmers can define flexible movements and cam functions using the mouse and store them in the control. Additionally, the user creates and combines individual movement steps graphically the CamBuilder tool ensures the seamless matching of movements. This modern concept enables path- or time-dependent segments to be defined. Likewise, users can select movement profiles prepared for many standard movement tasks such as “flying saw” or “rotary knife”. Moreover software assistants facilitate parametrization. Thus even complex motion applications can be resolved fast and simply.

Bosch Rexroth AG is one of the world’s leading specialists in the field of drive and control technologies. Under the Rexroth brand name, the company supplies more than 500,000 customers with tailored solutions for driving, controlling, and moving. Bosch Rexroth is a partner for Mobile Applications, Machinery Applications and Engineering, Factory Automation and Renewable Energies. The company provides customized solutions tailored to the needs and specifications of each individual market. As The Drive & Control Company, Bosch Rexroth develops, produces, and sells components and systems in over 80 countries. As part of the Bosch Group, Bosch Rexroth and its 34,900 associates generated approximately 5.1 billion euros in revenue in 2010.

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The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. In the areas of automotive and industrial technology, consumer goods, and building technology, some 285,000 associates generated sales of 47.3 billion euros in fiscal 2010. For 2011, the company forecasts sales of more than50 billion euros and a headcount of a good 300,000 by the end of the year. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its more than350 subsidiaries and regional companies in over 60 countries. If its sales and service partners are included, then Bosch is represented in roughly150 countries. This worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network is the foundation for further growth. Bosch spent 3.8 billion euros for research and development in 2010, and applied for over 3,800 patents worldwide. With all its products and services, Bosch enhances the quality of life by providing solutions which are both innovative and beneficial.

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Susanne Herzlieb
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