The future of welding - 40 robots and new approach from design to manufacturing

The next wave of robot investments constitutes a significant landmark in Fortaco’s history. The number of robots raised to 40 after the three new welding robot investments at Business Site Janow Lubelski, Kalajoki and Wroclaw.

This is an inevitable development in the era of modern manufacturing and digitalization. In the off-highway industry the robotization of manufacturing is a real challenge. The combination of high variability, seasonality and low volumes are setting the framework for a flexible manufacturing system. In our industry, volumes are not measured in millions of produced units but rather 10 – 1000 units per year.

Many of today’s products have been designed without thinking the use of robotization in manufacturing processes. In addition, the new generation of engineers has limited experience of manufacturing environments, technologies or processes.

The new Fortaco Technology unit has been created as a response to today’s challenges among many of our customers within the off-highway industry. Our Manufacturing Technology team is enabling our customers to realize the full potential of robotization in manufacturing . We are working closely with our partners in the robotics to secure that we make tomorrow better than today.

We invite and challenge our customers to involve Fortaco Technology team already in the concept and design phases to enable the best result. Your success is important.

With our 40 robots at the Fortaco factories we are committed to secure the technology shift.

Join us in this interesting journey!

Pay attention to these design challenges related to ergonomics

Functional cabin ergonomics is a result of many optimized factors. Basically, ergonomics means all interaction between operator and working environment.

What comes to a cabin, it simply means that good ergonomics can maximize operator's concentration and focus during the entire working shift, and this way both safety and efficiency will increase remarkably. Balanced ergonomics also reduces end-user’s stress and makes maneuvering significantly easier from the very beginning when the end-user steps into the cabin and adjusts personally his/her seat and other steering instruments.

When designing a functionally optimized cabin there are even legal aspects to be considered. “It is normal that authorities have placed regulations, which might vary, for example between tractors and harvesters. Typically, those requirements are ensuring the overall safety when operating a machine”, says Mr. Juha Juvonen, Technical Manager at Fortaco.

According to Mr. Juvonen authorities and legal stipulations are defining the minimum level of requirements for the cabin and the entire working machine. For example, the minimum door opening measurements are strictly enforced. Besides the legal aspects, also one of the very important design aspects is the fact that the cabin products are available globally. Many parameters can vary, and regional regulations can differ. Also, cabins are designed for the end-users of all sizes, and they are also used in the different kind of climate conditions.

“We are aware of the different factors, and having a wide base of subcontractors and part manufacturers, we can mix and match different components into the suitable combination for all markets exceeding regulations and norms with our own and higher criteria”, says Mr. Juvonen.

Mr. Juvonen continues, “when designing a cabin, usually the initiation point simply is a cabin with limited outer measurements. Design work turns the cabin into an optimized working environment.” This means that all the instruments, monitors and maneuvering equipment can be reached easily.

Good visibility can never be compromised
Already today, an increasing feature is to maintain the balance between good visibility and monitors placed inside the cabin. “Computerized cabin demands and good layout in a way that the monitors are fully visible, but at the same time, clear and all-around visibility is not jeopardized, says Mr. Juvonen.

When designing an ergonomic cabin, also service operations should be considered. According to Mr. Juvonen, the easy cleaning procedures combined with the easy access to all service points are crucial. “While keeping an operator on focus, we are paying attention to the service as well, because it is part of the excellent customer satisfaction.”