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Mechatronic – The Quest for Error-Free Production

Helping achieve error-free production lines is a major objective of Atlas Copco and its unique Mechatronic system enables manufacturers get closer to this goal. By combining proven mechanical tooling with the latest in wireless and digital technology, Mechatronic delivers the best of both worlds.

As well as providing the same reliability, performance and ease of use from its standard mechanical wrenches, the addition of monitoring hardware and software offers significant value to the whole production process by ensuring greater accuracy, traceability and quality assurance, all in one package.

Whilst still used as a standard mechanical wrench, the Mechatronic system (MWR) adds a digital interface to the wrench, effectively building in a quality assurance process to the actual tool. MWR enables the wrench to monitor three critical areas, namely that the correct angle has been achieved, the right torque has been applied and that the operator has released the joint at the optimum time. As easy to use as the click wrench it is based on, the Mechatronic system gives the operator a clear physical (LED green light) indication when the required torque is achieved. Sending the tightening data wirelessly to the complementary Focus controller means that any faults can be identified instantly and therefore rectified before they become a costly production issue and everything is audited and traceable down to a single screw. It can also be used to verify that all required elements of a joint are present and correct, avoiding missing washers and checking screw quality.

Mechatronic uses a gyro signal to measure operator movement, thereby increasing the accuracy of angle readings and improving controlled tightening. By narrowing down the angle window, the most common assembly problems such as damaged threads, re-hits, premature shut-offs and torque overshoot can be avoided, thereby improving productivity and quality.

Flexibility is obviously a key consideration for many manufacturers, where there are multiple assembly lines. Mechatronic facilitates a wireless connection of up to 10 wrenches, as well as programmable jobs and two wrenches in simultaneous operation.

Commenting on the many advantages of Mechatronic, David Embley, General Manager, Atlas Copco Tools UK, said:

“Our ultimate goal is zero defects in the manufacturing process with 100% traceability. With increasing complexity of products and demand for higher quality at the lowest cost, in the quickest time, manufacturers are under pressure to minimise any negative impact on production.

“Atlas Copco’s Smart Connected Assembly philosophy is focused on achieving quality, productivity and traceability in all assembly processes and as part of that, our Mechatronic system is designed to maximise productivity and increase customer efficiency, whilst eliminating human error and ensuring operator safety.”



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