By introducing digital technologies and industry 4.0 automation, aluminium producers can record a significant leap in productivity while offering a better control over the production process and customer’s reach out. This approach also provides better safety and environmental sustainability. The combination of digital and automation systems, industrial internet and big data, makes smart factories a reality.
Our mission is to introduce breakthrough technologies that rapidly adapt to new situations and to anticipate the concept of "lean production", while supporting the customer on the path of change towards a continuous improvement culture.
ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT AND AUTOMATION RETROFITTING
After melting, the semi-finished products undergo other processes including hot rolling to be transformed into flat products and subsequently into coils. Polytec provides automation and control by providing process control technology systems based on real-time platforms.
The cold rolling of aluminium flat strips requires quick, efficient and easy-to-manage controls. Process optimisation to reduce scrap is essential and the basis of our control software. Polytec is able to carry out the entire automation for complete control of the rolling process on roughing and intermediate rolling mills. Stands cylinders regulation and compensation algorithms and reel motors internally, allow to guarantee excellent performances in terms of thickness stability and reaction speed of the entire hydraulic AGC system in reaching the target of desired thickness reducing the coils’ scraps (heads / tails). Tailored regulation of these processes is essential to meet customer’s needs and satisfaction.
An area of production of aluminium products uses extrusion presses and machines to reshape the profile of the extrusions (stretching machines). Polytec is able to supply automation systems based on PLCs complete with software entirely designed in-house, active remote units, supervision and management systems capable of completely controlling the plant from Level 0 up to interfacing with the MES.
SMART ROBOTICS TAILORED TO ALUMINIUM PRODUCTION PROCESS
The automation and electrical equipment upgrade projects carried out for important manufacturers in the sector, have allowed Polytec to deepen the knowledge of the production process and to imagine the integration of robotics, which presence is still scarce in this sector.
In just a few years, Polytec has been able to engineer and commission robotic cells that provide great advantages in terms of workers safety and liability reduction while improving production with solutions that provide error-free product identification, downtime minimisation and overall productivity improvement. The robotic solutions developed resist both environments in which temperatures are high and in the presence of acids, replacing humans in high-risk tasks.
Following the flowchart we engineered multiple solutions, an automatic robot for managing the Plate removal and replacement in the Ceramic Foam Filter can be integrated in the melting area, while numerous robotic solutions for handling, palletizing, marking and tagging are available to be integrated throughout the complete production process (ingots, coil products.. ).
Specific automatic robots have been engineered and supplied answering customer’s critical issues such as strap cutting and removal, coil waste removal from the rolling mill unwinder and for the machine tending for aluminum components.
"Big data" and images collection support producers in the production predictive analysis to better control operations and to improve process management. Machine learning lets machines access data and learn for themselves, to operate independently.
AUTONOMOUS MOBILE ROBOTS FOR A SMART WAREHOUSE MANAGEMENT
For logistics and operations like picking, handling and shipping preparation AMRs help to process more orders in "busy" warehouse' environment, to increase capex and maintain customer satisfaction. Autonomous mobile robots work collaboratively with warehouse operatives by transporting batches to the next stage of processing, allowing workers to move on to their next task.
By operating autonomously, AMR’s move seamlessly within an existing warehouse layout without major disruption to existing operations. On-board sensors, maps, and processing systems allow them to plan routes and adapt dynamically to changes in their surroundings. AMRs can move stock within a warehouse or between facilities, programming can be flexible.
This obligatory route towards a new approach seeks in the continuous improvement of quality and production efficiency. The strategic key to remain competitive in a global market while paying attention to the issue of sustainability.
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