New handling system HS flex heavy
The handling system HS flex heavy marks the continuation of Hermle AG’s commitment, lasting almost 20 years, to the automation of its machining centres, with the company introducing a powerful, compact and extremely attractively priced automation tool onto the market.
The handling system HS flex heavy is designed to be adaptable to 5-axis Performance Line machining centres (C 400 and C 650) as well as to High Performance Line models (C 32 and C 42). This means the C 650 is available automated for the first time.
The handling system HS flex is based on several components, which are supplied and adapted as a complete unit. Only the workpiece storage modules are installed and adjusted on site. As a result, the entire installation – with all Hermle machining centres also being shipped in a pre-assembled state – is available in a very short time, and the user can start machining with little delay.
The flat mineral casting bed, on which the three axes of the handling unit are operated, offer ergonomically very friendly access for the operator. The two double-leaf doors, which have already proven their functional benefits in Hermle’s robot systems, provide a twofold function. During a tool change procedure, they prevent access by the operator, while during machining of the workpiece, they provide access to the working view position and working area while also preventing access to the handling unit.
The rotary, lifting and linear axes of the handling unit enable precise movement of the heavy workpieces up to 1200 kg, including the pallet, between the setup station, storage modules and the machining centre’s working area. With crane loading of machining centres, workpieces with even higher weight and dimensions can be moved into the machine working area. Pallets up to 800 x 630 are handled precisely. To minimise the sources of potential errors for the operator, the maximum workpiece height is queried beforehand at the setup station, thereby preventing workpieces with dimensions beyond specified dimensions from being fed in. The maximum workpiece dimension that can be handled is 800 x 630 x 700 mm (W x D x H).
Particular attention has been paid to the development of the storage modules. One module is installed as standard, and the adaptation of a second module is optionally possible. The modules are structured as a rack, offering maximum customisation potential in the pallet/workpiece arrangement. Up to three rack bottoms with a total of up to 9 pallet storage pockets can be ordered per module. If two storage modules are used, up to 18 pallet pockets are then available. Using a specially developed storage generator, which tests both the permitted weights and dimensions (given that a variety of machine models are possible), the storage arrangement can be defined quickly and easily.
The HS flex heavy, the pallet changer and the RS 05-2 robot system are controlled and managed using the proprietary and convenient Hermle Automation Control System, or HACS. HACS allows for smart order management, which intuitively aids the operator in their daily business via a software solution that can be operated by means of a touch panel. The transparent representation of the orders and required operator actions reduce the organisational downtimes and maximise productivity of the plant. When combined with the Hermle Information Monitoring System, which displays machine states in real time and can be shown on any tablet, desktop or smartphone, these two software tools are collectively a cornerstone of Industry 4.0-capable use of Hermle machining centres.