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Robotic automotive paint curing using thermal signature feedback

Fan Zeng (Mechanical Engineering, Clemson‐University‐International Center for Automotive‐Research, Greenville, South Carolina, USA)
Beshah Ayalew (Mechanical Engineering, Clemson‐University‐International Center for Automotive‐Research, Greenville, South Carolina, USA)
Mohammed Omar (Mechanical Engineering, Clemson‐University‐International Center for Automotive‐Research, Greenville, South Carolina, USA)

Industrial Robot

ISSN: 0143-991x

Article publication date: 19 June 2009

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399

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a new closed‐loop radiative robotic paint curing process that could replace less efficient and bulky convection‐based paint curing processes in automotive manufacturing.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed robotic paint curing processes uses an Ultraviolet LED panel for a heat source, an infra‐red camera for non‐contact thermal signature feedback of cure level, and a robot control strategy that incorporates the cure‐level information in an inverse dynamics control of the robotic manipulator. To demonstrate the advantage of the closed‐loop process in improving cure uniformity, detailed models and discussions of the irradiation process, the robotics and the control strategy are presented.

Findings

A simulation‐based comparison of the closed‐loop robotic curing with the open‐loop robotic curing clearly shows the benefits of using thermal signature feedback in improving cure level uniformity.

Originality/value

This is a new approach proposed to exploit immerging technology and improve the efficiency of energy use in an automotive manufacturing process without sacrificing product quality.

Keywords

Citation

Zeng, F., Ayalew, B. and Omar, M. (2009), "Robotic automotive paint curing using thermal signature feedback", Industrial Robot, Vol. 36 No. 4, pp. 389-395. https://doi.org/10.1108/01439910910957165

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited