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6 Examples Of Fixed Automation

Automation is a buzzword in today’s industrial landscape, driving industries towards more efficient, productive, and cost-effective operations. Among the various different types of automation systems available, fixed automation systems, also known as “hard automation,” hold a significant place. These systems are typically used for high-volume production processes where the product style doesn’t change much over time.

In this blog post, we will delve into ten examples of these fixed automation systems, exploring how they revolutionize various industries. So, whether you’re a business owner looking to streamline your operations or an automation enthusiast eager to learn more, read on for an inside scoop on fixed automation.

Introduction To Fixed Automation Systems

What Are Fixed Automation Systems

Fixed automation systems refer to the use of specialized equipment designed to perform one set of operations with high efficiency. These systems follow an unchanging sequence of operations, making them ideal for mass production. The equipment in a fixed automation system, such as wiring, cams, gears, and other hardware, delivers programmed instructions that the machines follow in the production process. Though these industrial automation systems may require high initial investment costs, they prove cost-effective in the long run for high-volume production processes.

Fixed automation is prevalent in industries, and approximately 80% of manufacturing processes utilize some form of fixed industrial automation system, demonstrating its widespread adoption.

Source- depositphotos.com

Examples Of Fixed Automation Systems

1. Automated Assembly Machines

Automated assembly machines play a crucial role in industries like automobile manufacturing, electronics, and appliances. These machines automate the process of putting together different parts to form a final product. They reduce labor costs, improve accuracy, and significantly increase production speed.

2. Chemical Manufacturing Processes

In chemical manufacturing, fixed automation systems ensure precise control over variables like temperature, pressure, and chemical composition. This precision is vital in maintaining the consistency and quality of the end product, whether it’s pharmaceutical drugs or industrial chemicals.

3. Material Handling Conveyor Systems

Conveyor systems are classic examples of fixed automation equipment. They transport materials from one point to another in a factory or warehouse, enhancing efficiency and reducing manual handling. With various types of conveyors available, industries can choose the most suitable one based on their specific needs.

4. Machining Transfer Lines

Machining transfer lines consist of a series of machine tools arranged in a sequence, each performing a specific operation on a part as it moves along the line. This type of fixed automation system production equipment is common in the automotive industry for the mass production of engine and transmission components.

The energy sector utilizes fixed automation in power generation. Automated control systems in power plants can monitor and adjust processes at frequencies of up to 1000 times per second, optimizing energy production and distribution.

5. Paint & Coating Automation Processes

Paint and coating processes often employ fixed automation systems for tasks like spray painting or powder coating. These automated systems provide uniform application, reduce waste, and improve the overall quality of the finish.

6. Web Handling And Converting Systems

Web, automated material handling systems and converting systems are used in industries such as paper, film, and foil manufacturing. These systems involve unwinding a large roll of material, processing it in some way – such as cutting, printing, or coating – and then rewinding it. Fixed automation ensures high-speed, efficient, and consistent operation.

Automotive assembly lines heavily rely on fixed automation, industrial robots, and it’s estimated that a typical automobile manufacturing plant can have up to 2000 robots in use, showcasing the high degree of automation in the industry.

Source- depositphotos.com

Applications Of Fixed Automation Systems

1. Aerospace Industry

In the aerospace industry, fixed automation systems contribute to the assembly of aircraft components, testing, and quality control processes. Given manufacturing automation and the high precision and safety standards in this industry, automating these processes helps maintain accuracy and reduce errors.

2. Automotive Industry

The automotive industry is a major user of fixed automation systems, employing them in various stages of vehicle production, from body assembly to painting and inspection. Automation not only speeds up the production line but also ensures the consistency and quality of manufactured vehicles.

The textile industry employs fixed automation extensively. In modern textile mills, automated looms can produce fabrics at rates of over 1000 meters per minute, revolutionizing the efficiency of textile production.

3. Consumer Goods Industry

In the consumer goods industry, fixed automation is used for the mass production of products like electronics, appliances, and toys. These integrated automation systems ensure high speed and efficiency, meeting the market’s demand for these products.

4. Heavy Equipment Manufacturing Industry

Fixed automation systems are used in the manufacturing of heavy equipment like tractors, bulldozers, and excavators. These soft automation systems handle tasks such as welding, assembly, and painting, ensuring high-quality and efficient production.

5. Life Sciences & Healthcare Industry

In life sciences and healthcare, fixed automation systems are used in processes like drug discovery, clinical diagnostics, and patient care. They are flexible automation to help enhance accuracy, reduce manual errors, and improve patient outcomes.

The adoption of fixed automation in electronics manufacturing is evident, with automated assembly lines capable of placing components at speeds of 20,000 components per hour, showcasing the speed and accuracy of fixed process automation in this sector.

6. Logistics Industry

In logistics, the industrial automation market is used in warehouse operations, inventory management, and delivery systems. Fixed automation systems like conveyor belts, automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS), and sorting systems significantly enhance efficiency and accuracy.

7. Medical Lab & Pharmaceutical Industry

Fixed automation plays a crucial role in the medical lab and pharmaceutical industry. It is employed in drug formulation, quality control tests, packaging, and labeling processes. This not only boosts productivity but also maintains high levels of accuracy and consistency, which are critical in this industry.

The food and beverage sector also embraces fixed industrial automation solutions. In food processing plants, fixed automation systems can handle tasks at speeds of up to 1000 units per minute, enhancing production efficiency.

Source- depositphotos.com

Benefits Of Implementing Fixed Automation Systems

Increased Production Efficacy

One of the primary benefits of fixed automation systems is increased production efficacy. By automating repetitive tasks, these programmable automation systems significantly speed up the production process, enabling industries to meet high market demands efficiently.

Improved Efficiency And Accuracy

Fixed automation systems enhance efficiency by reducing manual intervention, thereby minimizing the chances of errors and improving accuracy. This precision is crucial for maintaining product quality, particularly in industries like healthcare, aerospace, and automotive where a minor error can have serious consequences.

The pharmaceutical industry benefits from fixed automation in drug and manufacturing process. Studies suggest that automated pharmaceutical production lines can achieve accuracy rates of 99.9%, ensuring precision in dosage and quality.

Source- depositphotos.com

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, fixed automation systems are a transformative force across various industries. With their ability to increase efficiency, accuracy, and productivity, they play an integral role in the modern industrial automation landscape. As technology continues to evolve, we can only expect these systems to become more sophisticated, bringing about even more significant advancements in production processes.

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