Why does this blog seem to start with a list of seemingly random items/actions, when you clicked on this link for information about End Effectors also called End-of-Arm-Tooling? Well, that’s because that list that this blog starts with is just a small sample of what can be done/accomplished with an end effector.
But let’s back up a second. What are End effectors? The simple definition is as follows “End effectors, also known as End-of-Arm Tooling (EOAT), are devices that are attached to the end of an overhead lifting system or robotic arm. They are designed and used to act as the structures wrists/hand that interact with the environment.”
So essentially End effectors are kind of like a Swiss Army Knife, they can do just about anything you just may need to do! End effectors also allow you to easily switch out certain parts in order to be able to complete other tasks. So with all of these different applications out there let’s focus on two: Lift assists and lifting devices meant for ergonomic solutions.
So now that we know what an End Effector is and what specialty of Robotic End Effectors we will be focusing on let us move on.
End Effectors come in several different styles which some of which include:
Each of these different robotic peripherals has been developed with different tasks in mind. For example, a vacuum end effector comes with a suction cup on the end, which is used to move flat or fragile items such as glass panes.
You may now be wondering how exactly an end effector can be operated. The answer is that it truly depends on what the end user wants: they can be operated manually, mechanically or even powered to meet your current application needs.
What if you have a very specific need or are not sure about what you should buy for a particular application?
If you are in this circumstance then it is best to contact a material handling specialist. A material handling specialist will create a detailed analysis of your needs, they will take into consideration every aspect of your application from the environment, desired operation, clearance levels, product materials, surfaces, clamp locations, want movements the machine would need to complete and the cycle times. That is a lot of things to take into consideration for a machine, but if you want it done right and effectively you need to ensure all of these things will be taken into consideration before you buy your end-of-arm tooling device or else it may end up not working the way you want it to.
In the end, an End Effector is built with three things in mind:
- Employee safety.
- Speeding up production.
- Making the employees lives easier by reducing the amount of bending, twisting or lifting they have to do.
End-of-arm tooling devices are the way to ensure a faster, safer and more productive production line. They are becoming the standard way of ensuring a fast and effective production line, so what are you doing in order to ensure that you are keeping up with the competition?
Do you have an End Effector?
Are you looking into an End Effector?
Comment below and share your opinion or ask any questions you may have.