Seminar on Advancement in Robotics for Factory Productivity Improvement

Date: 28 May 2013 - 28 May 2013

Venue: SIMTech Auditorium, Tower Block, Level 3

Robotic has been deployed in various manufacturing processes. The manufacturing industry has long been utilising robots for mundane, repetitive or hazardous work. Robotic welding/machining/cutting offers precise and consistent engineering solutions which in turn enhances productive efficiency and cost savings. Therefore the high initial cost could bring many benefits, including an estimated 30 per cent reduction in material costs and a 50 per cent reduction in manpower.

This forum aims at promoting robotic technologies for productivity improvement. A new technology that perceived to be able to improve the setup time of robotic welding system will be introduced.

9am         Welcome Address and Introduction to MPTC by Dr Lee Eng Wah, Director, MPTC 

9.15am     Advance Robotics for Productivity Improvement 
                Mr Ralf Schneider, REIS Maschinenfabrik GmbH & Co KG

10.15am   Tea Break

10.40am   Industrial Robotics for Flexible Automation by 
                Dr Yang Guilin, Mechatronics Group Manager, SIMTech 

11.00am   Advancements in Robotics Finishing and Deburring Process  
                Dr Lai Chow Yin, Scientist, SIMTech 

11.30am    Interactive Industrial Robot Programming by Demonstration
                Dr Vuong Ngoc Dung, Scientist, SIMTech

12.00pm  Lunch and Networking

Advance Robotics for Productivity Improvement 
The presentation is designed for :
1)    Ship/Building structure builders - With emphasis on our Robotics profile cutting solutions, big gantry system for Robotic welding & Laser hybrid welding

2.  Oil & Gas components manufacturers - With emphasis on GMAW welding & Plasma transferred arc (PTA) welding

Industrial Robotics for Flexible Automation
In order to improve productivity and reduce manufacturing cost, many industries are exploring the use of industrial robots to automate those labour-intensive, high-mix, and low-volume manufacturing as well as repair processes, such as chamfering, deburring, and polishing, which are often encountered in aerospace, marine, oil & gas, and PE industries. However, there still exist some technical hurdles in real implementation as the current industrial robots are inefficient in continuous tool path teaching, inaccurate to implement off-line programming, and lacking in force control capability. To tackle such technical challenges, SIMTech has have developed a set of advanced robotic technologies for flexible automation, such as sensor-guided intuitive robot teaching and rapid programming to shorten the set-up time, robot calibration and on-line error compensation for accuracy enhancement, force-controlled end-effector modules and hybrid force-motion control for contact-type operations. Such R&D works will benefit to the manufacturing industries to reduce the reliance on the skilled workers, increase productivity, and improve quality consistence.

Advancements in Robotics Finishing and Deburring Process 
Traditionally, industrial robots have had great success in performing motion control tasks, such as spraying, arc welding, as well as pick-and-place. For such tasks, there is minimal or no contact between the robot and the workpiece. In recent years, however, there is an increase of operations which require the robot tool to touch the workpiece over a prolonged period, including surface finishing and deburring. Using conventional industrial robots to carry out these machining tasks may not be the best option as they are not designed / optimized for these operations. In this talk, some advancements in robot design and control methods, which make industrial robots suitable for finishing and deburring will be presented, along with some examples of real-world applications.

Interactive Industrial Robot Programming by Demonstration
Online robot programming (i.e. lead-through or walk-through) from the manufacturing point of view is time consuming, tedious and unsafe. Although offline programming is inherently safer, it requires skilled engineers with expensive equipment/software for reverse engineering of work pieces without CAD models. As a result, long setup time for sometimes short robot operating time is expected. In this talk, a natural teaching and interactive programming method that shortens the setup time is presented. By fusing the captured user's motion during operation and scanned point cloud of the local surfaces, the path tracking accuracy and reliability can be enhanced without any CAD information. The method is also able to suggest the work-piece location in the robotic work-cell to guarantee the path executability of the generated trajectories. To further ease the programming effort, the proposed method can automatically generate the robot program (currently only Motoman's and ABB's robots are supported) based on the taught information. The developed interactive robot programming by demonstration is particularly useful for high-mix low-volume (HMLV) operations in the SME context where cost and setup-time are the main concerns.

About the Speakers
Mr Ralf Schneider studied Mechanical Engineering at Ruhr-Universität-Bochum, Germany, in application field design of transport equipment. He graduated in 1989 as Diplom-Ingenieur (comparable to Master of Mec. Engineering). He worked at Tedata GmbH Bochum as Sales engineer and Product Group leader for CAD specially for Dimensioning and Calculation software and  CAR - Computer Aided Robotics after graduation till 1993. I was involved in the first MIG/MAG welding robot systems that were programmed completely offline. From 07.1993 - 12.2006, he worked in REIS ROBOTIC ESPAÑA S.l., Spain, as the general manager, responsible to built up the subsidiary with sales, service, local engineering and finance. From around 2001 he set up the design and assembly team specializing in grippers for handling and palletizing applications.Since 01.2007, he worked at  REIS Maschinenfabrik GmbH & Co.KG, Germany as Sales Manager International. He was responsible for sales and sales support for Reis subsidiaries world-wide for new markets and new technologies such as PV (e.g. as in China from 2009 till 2012), Batterie, Welding & Cutting (e.g. profile cutting solutions) etc.

Dr Yang Guilin  received the B. Eng degree and M. Eng degree from Jilin University, China, in 1985 and 1988 respectively, and Ph.D. degree from Nanyang Technological University in 1999. From 1988 to 1995, he had been with the School of Mechanical Engineering, Shijiazhuang Tiedao University, China, as a lecturer, a division head, and then the vice dean of the school. Since 1998, he has been with Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech), Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. Currently, he is a senior scientist and the manager of the Mechanics Group. His research interest and expertise include modelling, analysis, and design of - precision mechanisms, electromagnetic actuators, parallel-kinematics manipulators, modular robots, industrial robots, and automation systems. He has published over one hundred and seventy technical papers in referred journals and conference proceedings, six book chapters, and two books. He has filed 12 patents with 5 patents granted. He was the committee chair of Singapore IEEE Robotics and Automation Chapter (2011 -2012) and the Technical Editor of IEEE/ASME Transaction on Mechatronics (2008-2012). He has organized a number of international conferences and is now serving as editorial board members for a few international journals in mechatronics and robotics. 

Dr Lai Chow Yin  received the Diplom-Ingenieur (Fachhochschule) degree in mechatronics and microsystems technology from the University of Heilbronn, Germany, and the PhD degree in electrical and computer engineering from the Graduate School for Integrative Sciences and Engineering, National University of Singapore, in 2006 and 2011 respectively. His current research interests include robotic force control, both in hardware designs and control methodologies.

Dr Vuong Ngoc Dung graduated with a Bachelor (Hon) degree in Mechatronics Engineering from HCMC University of Technology (Vietnam), Master degree in Machinery Building from HCMC University of Technology and obtained his Ph.D. degree in Robotics and Automation from NUS (Singapore), in 2003, 2005 and 2011 respectively. His current research interest includes Robotics Motion/Force Control and Human-Machine Interface. 

Who Should Attend
SME and MNC welding/machining/cutting service providers for marine, oil & gas, aerospace and precision engineering industry.

This complimentary seminar is free of charge. Seats are available on first-come, first-served basis. To reserve a place, please register online.

Contact Us
For technical enquiries: Dr Ng Teck Chew, Scientist, Mechatronics Group, Tel: 6793 8261; Email:

For general enquiries: Alice Koh, Tel: 6793 8249; Email: