For over 60 years, FANUC has pioneered the development of numerically controlled machines in the automation industry. With 263 locations supporting 108 countries worldwide and more than 7,000 employees, FANUC offers a dense network in sales, technical support, research & development, logistics and customer service.
The business specialises in factory automation, which is split across three categories: robotics, factory automation systems, and production machinery. Its extensive product portfolio comprises market-leading vertical milling centres (ROBODRILL), plastic injection moulding machines (ROBOSHOT), wire EDMs (ROBOCUT), industrial robots and CNC systems.
In the UK, FANUC operates out of a new £19m, 107,000 sqft facility at Ansty Park in Coventry, which opened in May 2017. Embodying the significant growth the company has experienced over recent years, as well as its unified approach for the future, FANUC’s headquarters is four times larger than its previous location and has enabled the business to further develop its offering and strengthen its position in the market.
A robot for every purpose
With more than 100 models, FANUC offers the widest range of industrial robots in the world. Covering a diverse range of applications and industries, FANUC robots are easy to operate and provide complete flexibility thanks to a range of application-specific options, their ease of integration, and ability to handle payloads up to 2.3 tonnes.
What’s more, to help manufacturers improve the productivity of their robots, FANUC recently released the latest version of its intelligent 3D simulation software for robot motion control, ROBOGUIDE.
ROBOGUIDE Version 9 can be used for pre-sale concept simulations, right through to a full offline programming package for use on the shop floor. It is suitable for both new and experienced robot users, and has several advanced features, including a more intuitive user interface, updated virtual controllers, and a drag-and-drop function for the addition of robots and components within a work cell layout.
The ROBOGUIDE software can also support FANUC’s latest R30iB Plus robot controller, which includes the new iHMI interface that is common across the whole product range.
Compact yet powerful 5-axis drilling
FANUC’s ROBODRILL range of vertical machining centre delivers unrivalled quality and precision at great hourly rates, in a compact footprint. With an unbeatable tool change time of 0.7 seconds and a turret capable of handling tools weighing 4kg, the new advanced versions are both the fastest and strongest 5-axis CNC machines on the market.
Designed to meet every need, the ROBODRILL α-DiB5 series comprises six completely re-designed models in S, M and L sizes, available in either standard or advanced versions with spindle speed options of 10,000 and 24000 rpm. With a rigid servo drive control and a highly dynamic BBT30 spindle, these high-speed all-rounders are suitable for all vertical machining applications, from short production runs requiring fast turnaround times to flawless mass production.
Breaking the mould
FANUC ROBOSHOT sees the company take its state-of-the-art CNC precision technology from turning and milling and apply it to all-electric injection moulding. The results are greater acceleration, ultimate precision of movement and extremely short cycle times to produce large quantities of consistently high-quality parts.
With models capable of exerting clamping forces from 150kN to 5,000kN, FANUC ROBOSHOT is ideally suited to a diverse range of both simple and challenging injection moulding applications. Offering huge versatility, ROBOSHOT’s unique strength is its ability to produce almost anything using just one machine. These can include delicate items such as camera lenses, to products that require high levels of exertive force to produce, such as battery cases. What is more, thanks to its high level of specification, even standard ROBOSHOT machines can be used to produce specialised items, including micro-components, casings and even metal and ceramic parts.
EDM that is a CUT above
Versatility is at the heart of FANUC’s next generation ROBOCUT wire-cutting machine range. The α-CiB series comprises three versatile EDM machines of varying footprints, including the first model with an 800mm table and optional Z-axis travel of 500mm.
One of the stand-out features of the range is the built-in CORE STITCH function, which allows operators to extend unmanned machining hours by the better planning of cutting jobs. Stitch points are set directly on the machine’s CNC without the need for any pre-programming, and when used in combination with the wire path re-threading function it offers the ideal solution for long-lasting unmanned machining and multi-workpiece cutting. FANUC’s AWF2 Automatic Wire Feed threading technology also ensures fast, reliable automatic threading in just 10 seconds
Improved cutting control can also be achieved via the built-in iPulse 2 cutting function, which provides highly accurate corner control, regardless of material thickness or surface roughness. All models in the range also feature the ultra-reliable 31i-WB high-performance control. Complete with 15” colour touchscreen display with intuitive iHMI home screen, it is quick and easy to input and monitor data, while the intuitive visual maintenance interface features a built-in early warning system to identify potential errors before they occur.
Given its broad portfolio of equipment, training is a vital and growing part of FANUC’s offering to UK customers. Its Coventry-based training academy consists of four training rooms, each of which caters for up to eight students at any one time. The FANUC Academy houses eight robots of various sizes, as well as 12 simulators for factory automation. Programmes are offered on FANUC technologies such as ROBOGUIDE and FANUC iRVision, while bespoke training can be created based on individual customer application requirements. All courses provide practical, hands-on training exploring the areas of programming and maintenance.
For more information on FANUC UK, please visit: www.fanuc.eu.