A hundred metres in less than ten seconds

Every area of human activity has its tasks, some of which are easy, while others are a real challenge. Running a hundred metres in under ten seconds is not impossible, but it is highly unlikely to be achieved by the average person. Robotic welding can handle almost anything , but there are a few products where automation is not easy and can lead to dead ends, even though it makes sense and delivers what is expected (higher efficiency and quality). One such product has always been, and still is, the truss beam for building stage and scene constructions.

AreaFour Industries

These construction systems for both small and gigantic stages, on which we have seen many rock stars perform, are manufactured by AreaFour Industries in Roudnice nad Labem. František Zykan, the founder and owner of the company, says: "Usually people set a main goal and then gradually work towards it. I did not do it that way; I set sub-goals, which I gradually fulfilled. That way, I keep moving forward and the opportunities come by themselves. I see more and more of what is possible." One of the sub-goals he set for himself was the robotic welding of the beams AreaFour produces in Roudnice, putting him one step ahead of everyone else.

Blood, sweat and tears

At the beginning of the project, none of those involved could have predicted how much work would be put into the robotically welded beams. The result of the combined efforts of AreaFour Industries and Valk Welding in this project is 7 welding robots that are currently capable of producing hundreds of metres of beams per day. Adriaan Broere, CTO of the Valk Welding Group, says: "During the course of this project, there were many moments when it seemed that despite the latest technologies we have with Panasonic welding robots, despite decades of experience in hardware, software and welding, we would not be able to deliver what AreaFour expected from the project.”

Solving the unsolvable

“However,” Adriaan Broere continues, “thanks to the highly above-standard cooperation with both the clamping solution supplier, Edco Techniek, and the entire AreaFour Industries team led by Mr. Zykan and Mr. Žúbor, we always managed to find a solution. This project was not about delivering a robotic system, it was about finding a solution to a seemingly unsolvable problem. And I am convinced that together we all managed to run ‘a hundred under ten’.

Making it look easy

What does this ‘hundred under ten’ actually mean in the field of robotic welding? It means taking a product that is not easily prepared for repeated welding, finding a way to fix this product properly so that it can be assembled well, finding a configuration of the welding robot so that it reliably welds the aluminium product not just once, but a hundred or a thousand times. All this so that those who ultimately certify and test this product, which hangs over the heads of a crowd, can say: This process is reliable, we can hang this product over people's heads without worry. When put like this, it seems quite simple, just like watching an athlete run a hundred metres in under ten seconds.


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