Staubli robots and industrial laser scouring

Assembly Automation

ISSN: 0144-5154

Article publication date: 1 March 1999




(1999), "Staubli robots and industrial laser scouring", Assembly Automation, Vol. 19 No. 1.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 1999, MCB UP Limited

Staubli robots and industrial laser scouring

Stäubli robots and industrial laser scouring

Keyword Laser cleaning

Developed by IREPA Laser, laser scouring has been used for years for historical monuments.

Thirteen French partners and three years of research were needed to complete this project: laser manufacturers (Quantel and Sopra), system houses (Fabricom Automation and Voir), transfer and research centres (IREPA Laser, CLAIRE, l'IRPHE and Claude Bernard University of Lyon) and five potential users (BSN, PSA, Renault, Aérospatiale and Eurocopter Marignane).

A Stäubli RX130 robot (see Plate 5) was chosen to drive a Quantel YAB Laserblast 50 laser and a Sopra Excimere laser. The project, winner of the 1997 research prize, is conclusive as it meets different goals:

  • Laser surface preparation is an alternative to using solvents that damage the environment and surfaces. Laser scouring preserves surfaces normally damaged by abrasives.

  • This technique allows local, reproductible, homogeneous treatments.

The Stäubli RX130 robot was chosen after different tests were made on robots of this category.

Its reach and precise path performance were important criteria of choice because high speeds were needed (>7m/min.) with path precision around 0.1mm.

For Eurocopter's specific needs, the Excimere laser beam cannot be carried by optic fibre; therefore, the robot moves the composite part in front of the beam at a rate of 2m/min. Gluing reliability is increased and productivity quadrupled.

Plate 5The Stäubli RX130 robot

In other cases, the YAG laser source used allowed the optic fibre to carry the beam. Parts such as large moulds are scanned by the moving beam, handled by the robot.

IREPA Laser management mentions that several projects are in development, in fields such as chocolate, plastic and foundry industries.

For further information contact: Stäubli Faverges, Place Robert Stäubli, BP70, 74210 Faverges, France. Tel +33 4 50 65 60 77; +33 4 50 65 61 30; E-mail:; WWW;

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