New robotic cell at Worcester foundry

MAHLE Powertrain has recently invested £350,000 in a custom-built robotic cell at its specialist aluminum foundry in Worcester

MAHLE Powertrain has recently invested £350,000 in a custom-built robotic cell at its specialist aluminum foundry in Worcester, UK. The facility comprises a fully programmable IRB 6640 robot from ABB and an array of static finishing ancillaries including air knives, cut-off saws, a deburring head (with compliant spindle), a belt conveyor and a mist spray system.

The cell has been programmed with a number of automated operations including feeder removal and fettling of both block and cylinder head castings, all accessible via the operator interface console.
The cell was commissioned in September 2011 and has already been used to process over 1,000 V12 engine blocks, yielding a cost saving of 60% over the previous manual finishing method. Other benefits include a metal alloy saving of £15k per annum (through the re-melting of clean recovered metal) and a cleaner, safer working environment for the operators.