Solution for Automated Drilling in Composite Structures with a Standard Articulating Robot System 2010-01-1838
Manual drilling in carbon fiber and mixed material structures is a labor and cost intensive process. Therefore, the aircraft manufacturers are constantly investigating flexible and cost-effective automation solutions to improve their production solutions. These objectives inspire us, as a supplier of aircraft assembly equipment, to develop robot and end-effector technologies to fulfill the customer's requirement for a highly accurate, robotic based drilling system for varying aerospace applications.
This paper presents an innovative robot cell for drilling different aircraft parts consisting of CFRP and aluminum. The required absolute positioning accuracy is reached by using a proprietary compensation package for the robot that was developed by BROETJE-Automation. The new robot cell is based on a scalable system configuration which provides for the future extension of the work envelope and the integration of automated blind fastening. This solution demonstrates how standard robots equipped with a mature and production proven compensation method by BROETJE-Automation satisfied the requirements for a highly flexible, cost-efficient, and light weight automation production response.