The end-effector, or end of arm tooling (EOAT), is an essential piece of an industrial robot. Manufacturers don’t include the EOAT in the design of the robot arm, adding an EOAT creates a flexible robot capable of performing a variety of tasks. It’s only once an end-effector is applied by an integrator that the robot becomes a task-specific solution.
The type of EOAT being integrated determines the way the robot is used. They’re an important part of any industrial robotic application, and the right end-effector can mean the difference between highly productive processes or highly unproductive processes.
How is the Right Robotic End-Effector Chosen?
Typically, the process of choosing the best end-effector involves a comprehensive review of the application. This is usually performed by a robotic systems integrator with extensive industry experience and knowledge of robotic applications.
Some common factors that are considered include working pressures, payloads, speeds, tooling lengths, part parameters, space constraints, and budget constraints. In material handling applications, for example, the size and weight of an item will be considered to choose between mechanical grippers and vacuum clamps. Different EOAT characteristics are prioritized based on the application. In an environment where a robot has to reach far the weight of the end-effector becomes critical. Utilizing a quick change tooling device allows the robot to switch between different EOAT’s during the cycle as well.
The right end-effector is chosen based on numerous application-specific factors to find the most productive and profitable solution.
Why Does Finding the Right End-Effector Impact Performance?
The wrong EOAT can lead to significant levels of downtime that drive down overall productivity. Robots using the wrong end-effector may be damaged or too slow to keep up with modern production lines, leading to further inefficiencies.
For reliable, productive robotic performance, choosing the right end-effector is vital. For an industrial robot to be able to perform its tasks properly, the EOAT has to be able to quickly and effectively handle the parts as intended. The robot can’t compensate for EOAT that’s unable to grasp an object or is too heavy. With the proper EOAT in place, the robot can perform as intended, delivering higher productivity and quick return on investment (ROI).
End-effectors are a critical part of the value of industrial robots. Without the right end-effectors, industrial robots will have trouble achieving their core mission of automating manual processes for greater profitability.
The right end-effector has positive results on the overall performance of a robotic system. It’s important to work with a robotic systems integrator who has extensive experience in your industry and the expertise in place to choose the correct EOAT for your robotic systems. To learn more, read about Genesis Systems Group’s expert robotic tooling services.