Expert System Controlled Vision Guided Welding Workcell 892297
An automated 20-axis laser cutting and welding robotic workcell is described that utilizes an expert system controlled adaptive 3-D vision system. The cell is designed to be a general purpose shop tool that has also been specialized to repair combustion chambers for TF-30 jet engines. The workcell is being designed and built for the Navy's Norfolk, Virginia Naval Aviation Depot (NADEP). The machine is designed to cut and weld various alloys up to 3 mm thick on an arbitrary part that does not exceed a work envelope of 1.22 m × 1.22 m × 1.22 m or a mass of 230 kg. The workcell consists of seven major hardware components or groups of hardware components: CO2 laser, laser beam delivery, robot, handlers, end effector, 3-D vision subsystem, and control system. All these components are commercially available except for the 3-D vision system and control software which were designed in-house. This paper will concentrate on the adaptive end effector and the planned use of an embedded expert system to control the vision system.