“When welders and robots unite”

4 reasons skilled welders make the best robotic welding operators

By Jack Moore, Senior Process Engineer, Technology Advancement Team at Yaskawa America, Inc.

The WELDER July/August 2020

Skilled welders are becoming harder to come by. It is estimated that there will be a shortage of over 375,000 skilled welding professionals projected by 2023 (American Welding Society). This shortage will not only affect goods that are manually made but, also those by robotic welding automation because, the most skilled welders make for the best robot programmers.

It takes less time to learn robot controller basics than to learn all the variables and adjustments of control parameters for welding processes. That is why it is most beneficial to take skilled welders with a plethora of experience they’ve gained on the job and teach them robotic programming.

Although robotic welding can satisfy many types of welding processes, having a robot technician with extensive welding knowledge on-hand can increase throughput and optimize weld quality. While also providing long-term weld support for greater efficiency.

There are a multitude of variables in producing welded assemblies successfully. The same variables also apply in robotic welding applications, that require the operator to communicate them to the robot control. Having a skilled welder can influence the robot in part-fit-up, robot path programming and weld sequencing.

With fewer people entering the welding field, it makes the most sense to fully utilize current welders by applying their knowledge to robotic welding workcells. One welder can influence numerous welding applications. With an increase in production speeds and increased volume, a shop can greatly benefit from a robotic welding system. Get the full story here:

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