The new TruTops Weld programming software from Luton-based Trumpf Ltd (www.trumpf.com
) allows users to create welding programs offline on a computer, while the laser welding cell is producing parts.
They then transfer the program to the machine, where the TeachLine sensor system automatically adjusts it to match the actual position of the part, thereby minimising the need for teach-in processes.
This programming software — specifically designed to work with the TruLaser Weld 5000 laser welding cell — offers what the company describes as “an intuitive user-friendly interface”.
Furthermore, it incorporates a broad range of Trumpf’s “accumulated technological expertise”, including welding parameters and information on processing angles; it also integrates all the TruLaser Weld functions, such as the rotary module and the TeachLine sensor system.
With teach-in programming, machine operators have to individually program every point the robot will travel to during processing.
TruTops Weld calculates these points on the robot’s path automatically; it also offers a number of other features that make life easier for machine operators.
The new programming process consists of four steps. First, the programmer defines the points to be welded by ‘clicking’ the corresponding part edges.
The welding parameters can then be selected from a comprehensive database (alternatively, programmers can choose to use parameters they have calculated themselves).
At this early stage, the software automatically calculates the paths of motion and creates a preliminary program.
TruTops Weld then ‘finalises’ the program in what is known as ‘system mode’, which enables the user to ‘virtually’ place the part on the positioner inside the laser welding cell.
The software then detects any potential collisions and helps the user to find a position and path of motion that the robot can follow without meeting obstructions.
This simulation is particularly helpful for complex parts. Finally, the programmer transfers the program to the welding cell, where the TeachLine sensor system checks the exact position of the part and compares this information to the simulation, automatically adjusting the program to accommodate any discrepancies identified.
Users still have the option of carrying out a conventional teach-in process.