Install a Flexible Automated Manufacturing System

The installation of flexible automated manufacturing is a turning point in the life of a company. It is important to have the employees as involved as possible in the installation. During this time some training will occur, either formal or informal. Management needs to be sensitive about giving directions concerning the new implementation. It is important that employees have a good understanding of the installation plan and how the final result will impact their daily work. Management can schedule for production workers to work along side installation personnel. This will help the employees to get a better understanding of the equipment of the flexible automated manufacturing and what can be expected of it. Also it will help the employees to cultivate ownership of the new manufacturing equipment and the benefits it will afford the company.
Before the actual shipping of the equipment that makes up the flexible automated manufacturing to the purchasing company, production managers from the purchasing company review its performance at its own manufacturing facility. Each piece of the system is tested individually. As near a production load as possible is put on each part of the flexible automated manufacturing. As the tests are performed the equipment performance is checked against the specifications that are expected. If any of the flexible automated manufacturing fails any of the tests the production, management makes note of the exact failure and disqualifies the equipment from shipping until it can pass the test. Once the tests are complete the production management of the purchasing company signs off as to having attended the tests and that the results of the tests were successful for equipment that will be shipped. The equipment is crated and shipped to the purchasing company location. There may have to be adjustments in the shipping schedule if any equipment does not pass the tests.
Most of the time the purchasing company and the system integrator will agree on the most practical order for the flexible automated manufacturing to be installed. The company will want this installation to disrupt its manufacturing operations as little as possible. Sometimes the install will be set up to occur in phases. This can be done so that the company does not have to wait until all the equipment is installed to start using it. The phases will be set so that some equipment can be installed and the company can bring some or all of those machines into production immediately. Generally there can be four phases that are required for a full system installation.
If there are CNC machines or other heavy devices that are to be installed, phase one of the process would be the time when floor excavation would be done. Any recovery systems, such as chip removers or coolant systems would be installed in this phase. Conduits for the utilities would be installed to support the new machinery. Foundation slabs would be reinforced, poured and started to cure.
The second phase of installation would include any floor lines for automation guided vehicles, if those are part of the system. Wiring for electrical drops would be pulled to their approximate locations, but not connected. The compressed air lines would be run close to their locations, but not attached. All the slabs would be fully cured and any lines that were placed in the floor are epoxied and sealed.
Machinery that is to be attached to the new flexible automated manufacturing should be staged near the production line where it is to be installed. The staging would be done in the order that equipment is to be added to the system. All the electrical lines and compressed air lines that were pulled earlier would be hooked up and tested. Each piece of equipment is added to the system according to the scheduled order for hook up. As each is added it is fully Small Scale And Cottage Industries Wikipedia checked out. Tests are done to verify that the equipment is performing at the specification levels that were found when it was test at the manufacturer’s plant. All the controlling and application software is installed in this phase. This will give management the ability to test to software and debug if necessary before actual production begins. Automation guided vehicles are hooked to the system, if they are part of the system, then they are tested.
During the final installation phase, subordinate machinery, like queuing carrousels for overflow parking, stations for loading and unloading of parts and raw materials, fixture and tool build stations, and tool delivery stations, can be assembled and added to the system. The safety indicators should be installed in this phase, including safety barriers, eye washing stations, if required, fire extinguishers and any other required safety apparatus.
Overall the installation of the flexible manufacturing system should be done in the most practical way possible. The specified capability of the equipment is verified before it is shipped to the purchasing company. A well devised plan for installing the equipment has been laid out. Adhering to the plan Continuous Flow Manufacturing Lean and the checking of each piece of equipment as soon as it gets into it new work place is important. If these steps are followed there will be a very successful installation. See “Acceptance of an Automated Flexible Manufacturing System” for thoughts about the acceptance and use of an installed system.

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