Platteau Subcontracting has been a major supplier in machine construction for decades. Over the years, the company primarily specialised in exclusive piecework for machine construction for various sectors. In order to excel in this, considerable investment was made in state-of-the-art machinery, including units that are capable of machining workpieces of up to 11 metres. Smaller batches and smaller workpieces were also produced, but competition is cut-throat in this segment, so the focus remained on larger pieces.
This all changed a few years ago, however, when Pieter Cappoen, the business manager, was introduced to RoboJob's Tower: a new standard automation where workpieces, clamping devices and robot grippers can be stored in a central magazine. A FANUC robot with servo gripper keeps a turning, milling or multitasking machine working autonomously. RoboJob built this innovative solution specifically for 'high mix, low volume': varying, smaller batches that can be produced interchangeably.
The first Tower was installed for Platteau in January 2021 on a new Mazak Integrex J-200S. The robot does not only handle workpiece loading, but also automatically changes the individual jaws of the SMW Autoblok clamping jaws. Just three months later, a second Tower was ordered and installed in February 2022, also on a Mazak Integrex J-200S. Collets from Hainbuch were used for the second installation, which are also automatically exchanged by the robot. A third Tower has since been ordered, which will be attached to a Doosan DVF5000.
Why are the people at Platteau so confident in the Tower, and what are the results on the company's efficiency and profits? The business manager will explain this in person on Thursday, 16 March 2023 at HOWEST in Kortrijk, which is when Agoria is organising the 'Awareness Sessions' on the topic of Robotisation, in collaboration with Sirris. The intention is for manufacturing companies to hear first-hand how Platteau and others have been able to boost efficiency and sales thanks to automation and robotisation. More information is available on Agoria's website, https://www.agoria.be/nl/automation-robotisation/agenda/discover-how-robotisation-can-increase-your-profitability-and-efficiency