low payload robot

Low Payload Material Handling Robots

Not every material handling application will require a high payload robot. In fact, there are many material handling processes that involve light or small parts. This is why top robotic manufacturers have designed a wide range of material handling robots. Low payload material handling robot manipulators were developed to fill in the void that was missing in robotic automation and they have actually become quite common.

Low payload robots typically consist of payloads of 20 kg or less. These industrial robots tend to have a smaller or more compact footprint than their higher payload counterparts. As a result of their smaller frame they also tend to have a lighter mass. Low payload material handling robots can vary by structure. They may consist of articulated, SCARA, collaborative, or delta robot structures. Articulated and collaborative robots tend to be the most common for automating low payload material handling. The FANUC Lr Mate 200ic is one of the more popular low payload industrial robot arms for handling processes.

Low payload material handling factory robots can be used to automate light weight assembly, dispensing, palletizing, packaging, pick and place, and part transfer applications. Any process involving the handling, lifting, retrieving, or packing of small or light parts can be automated by the ABB IRB 140 or another low payload robot. When automating with a low payload manufacturing robot arm it is important to keep in mind that any tooling integrated to the robot is also light weight. Robot payload is the maximum weight, including for both the workpieces and end-effector, a robot wrist can handle. With low payload articulated robots there is less leeway with this than with robots with heavier payloads.

Just because a material handling robotic manipulator has a low payload does not mean it will not be powerful. While a low payload robot may not be powerful in the sense of strength, it will be quite powerful when it comes to speed. Low payload material handling robots are incredibly fast and agile. With less weight to maneuver and carry, the Yaskawa Motoman MH6 can operate at extremely fast cycle times. Parts can be retrieved within seconds, significantly improving throughput. This is why it is important to not automate with a handling robot that has a payload that is too high for your application. Over estimating robot payload will lead to an inefficient process as it will not be as fast or agile for lower payload handling. This contradicts the point of automating as the goal is to create a more efficient material handling method.

All the major robotic manufacturers have developed lines of material handling options that include low payload six axis robots. FANUC’s M series features a wide range of general purpose robots. Low payload robots from the series include the FANUC M-10ia and FANUC M-20ia. Yaskawa Motoman’s MH series is dedicated to the automation of material handling. The MH series includes the low payload Yaskawa MH5. Both ABB and KUKA manufacture multipurpose robots capable of automating material handling. The ABB IRB 120 is one of ABB’s low payload handling robots. While the KUKA KR6 R900 is a similar small industrial robot from KUKA.

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ABB Low Payload Material Handling Robots

FANUC Low Payload Material Handling Robots

KUKA Low Payload Material Handling Robots

Yaskawa Motoman Low Payload Material Handling Robots

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