Vision Guided Axle Welding
Decision Technology has been a leader in adding machine vision weld torch guidance to axle spindle welders. Our equipment can be retrofitted to most dual torch rotary spindle welders. Each torch would be mounted to one of our servo torch slides and guided by a camera looking at the intersection of the weld wire and root of the weld groove.
After the tube and spindles are loaded, the process PLC lowers the torches into position and tells our vision process controller to check the torch positions. We open the camera shields then grab and process an image for each torch. If out of position, the torches are moved into position and the cameras take another look to ensure position. Once the torches are in the optimal positions, the processor signals the process PLC to start the welds. Typically the torches can be placed to better than +/- .006 inches.
The vision system can monitor excessive groove width, excessive dirt in the groove and nozzle standoff. Under such conditions the system will not weld and annunciate an error to the operator. As of 9-1-16 several new features have been added. First: the system is now compatible with multi-pass welds. Second: the system can now check for certain aspects of the final weld providing a basic check in regard to weld quality. Operation with torch angles down to 60-degrees is also possible.