Application Review- KUKA

On visiting KUKA Roboter GmbH we were in the presence of a true pioneer in the field of robot and automation technology. The Augsburg-based company developed the FAMULUS, its first industrial robot with six electromechanically-driven axes back in 1973. In 1996, they then played a role in bringing in the era of real mechatronics with a PC-based control system. Today, KUKA Roboter produces and sells automated production solutions for the automotive, medical and solar industry as well as aviation, aerospace and machine tool sectors to name a few.


The robot can cover a larger working area thanks to the linear axis

For many years, the KUKA developers have entrusted igus® chains with the cables for their linear axes. The fact that these are highly robust and reliable, is however not what tipped the scales in their favour. Instead, Hans Brix, linear axis developer, says that it is the exceptionally long unsupported length of the igus® chains, which allows the greatest possible extent of movement by the robots.

KUKA has now laid the chain with the cables on the support structure for the first time. As a result, the trough system is no longer required and the design is far more compact, automatically saving several square metres of space.


A comparison of two systems: in the image on the left, the cables run in an external guide trough. On the right, the e-chain® has been placed on the robot’s support structure. This saves space and reduces costs

igus® generally fills its e-chains® with the cables desired by the customers and then supplies them as complete units that can be simply and quickly installed on site. To date, KUKA has always used a middle-ground option and filled the chains with its own cables. This too is possible if desired by the igus® customer.


KUKA employees and the “iglidur® on tour” team agree: igus® e-chains® last; igus® scarves provide lasting warmth

We would like to thank all the KUKA Roboter GmbH employees that we met for their friendly reception and, in particular, Hans Brix for giving us an interview.

Best regards,
igus® and the “iglidur® on tour” team

*We are recruiting: Project Engineer Sales Support*

Project Engineering Sales Support, Northampton

To support the engineering sales team with pro-active sales, administrative & project co-ordination tasks. The ideal candidate will be an excellent communicator with a polite and friendly approach to work; have a strong personality with the ability to work under pressure and to tight deadlines, a confident decision maker and have a keen eye for detail. This role is going to suit someone confident that wants to work in a creative technical sales environment and where the job will constantly evolve.  A flexible & open mind will be a key attribute.

Mainly office based but with occasional UK wide travel, including occasional overnight stays away.  Some electro-mechanical engineering knowledge and/or qualification within this field is essential.

Key responsibilities include:

  • Pro-active sales
  • Technical sales support
  • Office Administration.
  • Working with CAD systems and understanding drawings.
  • Co-ordinating project timing & delivery schedules.
  • Liaising with various departments within the UK & Europe.
  • Liaising with sub-contractors.
  • Installation support.
  • Liaising with customers via telephone, e mail and in person.
  • Dealing with incoming enquiries and existing projects.
  • Dealing with suppliers.
  • Quality Assurance checks on engineered parts.
  • Compiling installation method statements.

Starting salary £17,000 + performance bonuses

For more information please contact Mark Smith on 07767 257343 or email msmith@igus.co.uk

A big announcement

We have just passed the Canadian border. For the first time, I am with the car on a picture, the reason being; that I want to make an announcement. The U.S. tour will be my last one. At the end of August, I will leave this tour to pursue studying in Paris. I have had an amazing journey so far, but it is time to go back to reality. I will inform you about my successor soon but as a sneak preview, she/he is already traveling with me. Anyway, we still have more than two weeks together. I will keep you up to date. Yours, Sascha.

 

The route in pictures, a quick re-cap

We started in Tokyo…

Want to see information on iglidur parts? Go straight to igus website: http://bit.ly/1nBjNSC

…where we took part in the automotive exhibition…

…and also participated in a traditional festival…

…before we started exploring the greatest city on Earth…

We also went to the German Embassy

One member of the embassy even held a speech at our press conference…

…besides Kenny, the country manager of Japan.

As soon as the conference had finished, we mad our way to Isesaki…

We then went onto the West Coast…

Then we drove south to Kyoto…

…the next venue was Osaka…

…and Hiroshima.

From Hiroshima, we continued to travel down South until we reached Mt.Aso, the largest active volcano of Japan.

From Mt. Aso, we went back up North to the coastal city Nagoya.

From Nagoya we continued north to the famous Mount Fuji…

We then headed straight to Sendai, where we received a donation…

From Sendai we headed back towards Tokyo. On the way we dropped by at the factory to say goodbye.

Fire and Ashes

When you travel thousands of kilometres, it is important that the seat is robust and comfortable. iglidur® bearings enable the driver to maintain a comfortable sitting position. Worldwide, manufacturers are using igus products to improve their seating in vehicles.

A seat manufacturer from Japan, who makes use of iglidur®

Seating manufacturers make use of iglidur® in several elements including seat height adjustments, backrest angle adjustments, crash-active headrest and adjustment motors.

 

iglidur® bearings are convincing with smooth motion. We make use of iglidur® for the seat in our car too. Our bearings help adjusting the seat without making any noise.

Although it can be said to be dependant on the weight of the person, the bearings must endure a high static load. With 100N/mm² iglidur® bearings could even carry the heaviest sumo wrestler. However, the quality of being able to carry a heavy weight does not compromise on the weight of the bearing itself; they remain light (about seven times lighter than conventional metal bearings). They are a cost-effective and reliable bearing solution for any kind of seat.

Japan comprises of four large islands, of which includes the mainland with Tokyo and Hiroshima. From Hiroshima we travelled right to the southern island Kyushu.

Kyushu is the third largest island, famous for its numerous hot springs. Pillars of white steam can be seen everywhere. Hot springs seem frequent, whilst we were in Taiwan, one of our bearings we immersed in boiling hot spring water for more than one hour, the result; the bearing was no different to before it went in! The clouds you can see in the background are not those of the usual kind, yet from hot springs in the mountains.

The unique geography of Japan (being situated at the edges of three tectonic plates), encourages the high percentage of springs. Here, the Pacific Plate, Philippine Plate and the Eurasian Plate are meeting, resulting in Japan not only a centre for hot springs, but also to one of tsunamis and active volcanoes. As our bearings can easily endure high heat (For instance: iglidur X is suitable for temperatures of +250 °C (long-time) and up to +315 °C (short-time), we took the car to Mount Aso; not only the largest active volcano in Japan, yet one of the contenders among the largest in the world. As the soil near a volcano is very fertile, the surrounding is very green.

Already from far away, while passing the lowland below the volcano, you can see the pillar of smoke.

The last eruption of Mount Aso was in 2011.

An eruption at our visit would have been surely more dangerous for us than our bearings. They are all dirt and heat resistant.

From Mount Aso, we travelled North again where we passed a chain of small islands near the mainland.

From there, we drove straight about 800 kilometres to the coastal city Nagoya.

In Japan, we have already coveredabout 3000 kilometres.

I will keep you up to date,

yours Sascha.

Press conference-Tokyo

This morning was the official start of iglidur® on tour in Japan where, to mark this occasion, Thirty-two journalists came to a hotel in the centre of Tokyo to join the press conference.

Kunihiko Kitagawa (or Kenny, which is easier for non-Japanese), country manager of igus® Japan, was informing the journalists about the history of igus®, our iglidur® products and the immediate tour.

We intend on exploring the whole island, driving along the coast once around Japan with at least 4500 km lying ahead. For each kilometre, igus® Japan will donate one euro to a foundation that is helping children who have suffered from the Tsunami in 2011 (For instance, those who lost their home).
One highlight of the conference was the speech of Mr. Sickert, who was representing the German embassy. The German embassy helped us with the complicated registration of the car.

Mr.Sickert referred to igus® as a highly innovative company that is representing the German “Mittelstand”:
“With its highly specialised products, sales and production facilities on several continents and obvious knack for marketing, igus is a prime example of the successful Mittelstand”. The German “Mittelstand” comprises of mid-size companies that are considered as the economic backbone of the German economy.

After his speech, the journalists had the chance to ask questions and to get more information about our products.A wide range of igus® products were also showcased on several tablets.

Following on from the press conference we left Tokyo. Our first stop is Isesaki, where we are going to visit our first customers. Three weeks of customers, driving and adventures. Let the tour begin.

Video of the Week – drylin Q20 linear guide is tough yet light

 

available in multiple options for flexible bearing design

Visit the igus website for more information: www.igus.co.uk

drylin Q20 linear construction kit is the latest torque resistant square linear guide from linear guides expert, igus. Available in a variety of mounting options and with adjustable bearing clearance, drylin Q20 offers designers and engineers a highly flexible solution.

To meet all igus’ customer needs, drylin Q20 comprises a carriage version for all unsupported solutions as well as models with or without manual clamp. In addition, fastening slot nuts are only one of the many mounting options offered by drylin Q20, which can also be combined with all 20/20 aluminium construction profiles.

Due to its hollow chamber design, the drylin Q20linear construction kit’s rugged hard-anodised aluminium profile is light-weight, self-lubricating and thus ideal for carrying supply cables.

To find out more about drylin Q20 linear construction kit, please watch this video: www.igus.co.uk/DrylinQ

For more information on igus products and to request free product samples, please contact igus on 01604 677240. For regular updates, follow us on www.twitter.com/igusUK, watch our videos at www.igus.co.uk/youtube, connect with us at www.igus.co.uk/facebook or visit our blog on blog.igus.co.uk.