Fluid dispensing: a robot’s job

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When assembling products, manually dispensing fluids such as adhesives, sealants and potting compounds requires a steady hand, close co-ordination and patience. Manual dispensing may be sufficient when production demands and/or quality standards are low, but in today’s manufacturing industry, automation is increasingly needed to stay competitive. Here Peter Swanson, Managing Director of adhesives specialist Intertronics, explains how manufacturers can benefit from using robots to automate fluid dispensing.

Robotic systems for fluid dispensing are not just for large scale production environments. Benchtop automated fluid dispensing systems fit well into small scale production, as well as pre-production, R&D and laboratory environments.

For example, rotary dispensing tables are benchtop systems that rotate a round or cylindrical object while applying fluid. They work in tandem with a range of dispensing devices depending on the required precision — a dispensing valve or pump offers higher precision than a syringe.

Intertronics’ F1300N Rotary Dispensing Table has an adjustable Z-axis tilt function, which gives manufacturers controlled rotary dispensing at a range of angles. This means it can be used to dispense fluids onto external and internal surfaces of a component

Crucially, automated dispensing offers substantial productivity benefits, not just in speed of application and reduction of manual labour, but also in reduction of rejects due to highly accurate, consistent dispensing. The increased precision ensures the fluid is always placed in the required location and helps to protect critical components. Since moving to an automated dispensing process, one of Intertronics’ customers has been saving an average of £2,000 per month by decreasing material costs and significantly reducing scrappage.

To ensure adhesive ends up where it should be and that dispensing results are consistent and repeatable, manufacturers should invest in an automated fluid dispensing system. The advantages make manufacturers more competitive in a marketplace where productivity is an increasing concern.