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Late last year, Kosta Manning became the first scholar to travel from South Australia to the UK through the Advanced Manufacturing Research Exchange (AMREx) – a program recently established with Department for Industry, Innovation and Science funding to facilitate the exchange of advanced manufacturing expertise between the University of Strathclyde (Scotland) and Flinders University.
A Project Engineer – Robotics and Automation, Kosta works in the Flinders University Australian Industrial Transformation Institute (AITI), where he manages robotics and automation equipment required for research trials, testing and demonstrations.
At the University’s Factory of the Future facility, Kosta and his colleagues work with the manufacturing industry to accelerate their adoption of Industry 4.0 technologies and solve business challenges.
The objective of Kosta’s two-week visit to the University of Strathclyde’s National Manufacturing Institute of Scotland (NMIS) was to learn and share robotic welding knowledge.
“The scale of the NMIS site and its operations, the number of staff and research partners, and the range of technologies and capabilities, was very impressive and quite overwhelming!” Kosta said.
“I was afforded opportunities to be involved in tours and demonstrations and I spent time one-on-one with subject matter experts.
“Everyone was very generous with their time and information.”
Welding is a critical manufacturing technology for a vast range of steel joining applications, and manual welding is a highly skilled task. Robotic welding offers a pathway to consistent, high-quality welds for parts with complex shapes.
The AMREx program has provided Kosta with an example of best practice, and led to a better understanding of the requirements for robotic machining, friction stir-welding and materials manufacturing. He was also exposed to new robotics technologies and their applications.
Over the coming months Kosta has the opportunity to apply his AMREx learning, as he will be instrumental in activating The Staubli TX200
Located in the Factory of the Future, The Staubli is a six-axis robotic arm with the capacity to mount a range of heavy-duty interchangeable end-effectors, including tools for welding and process monitoring.
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