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With the new e-F@ctory Alliance partner Visual Components – Mitsubishi robots enter a 3D world for easy simulation

The Finnish 3D factory simulation software expert Visual Components has joined the Mitsubishi Electric e-F@ctory Alliance – having integrated all of Mitsubishi’s Robots into its industry leading ‘3DRealize R’ automation simulation software.

Mitsubishi robots

Photo: Mitsubishi Electric Europe

Visual Components software is designed to allow engineers and production designers to quickly model, and then animate, new or updated production spaces in order to study work-flow, check dimensions and ensure the safe operation of moving components such as robots, conveyors and packaging machines.

When integrating a robot into a production, packaging or processing environment safety is a key consideration, robots tend to move more quickly than people and can have a very wide range of movement so are difficult to predict from a human perspective. It is vital therefore that space and movement is modelled before robots are installed, it is also essential that robots are contained within a suitably compact envelope, so as to optimise production floor space and avoid collisions.

The really innovative part of what Visual Components software can do is in the quality of the simulation and the ease of viewing and manipulation.The software allows users to create quickly a fully interactive, fully rendered 3D animation in a PDF.

automation simulation software

Photo: Mitsubishi Electric Europe

This 3D PDF comes with a special set of tools to control viewing position, transparency, colours and motion, but amazingly can be opened with a standard PDF reader so can be used easily by a huge range of people within an organisation as it is small enough to email.The active PDFs are an excellent way to share development intentions and to see clearly what your solution looks like.

Parts, machines, housings, conveyors, guarding and now Mitsubishi robots are all included in libraries, making it extremely easy to construct any production cell or line in the software. It is also possible to import your own CAD files to supplement those already available, allowing easy adaptations to specific situations.

With this 3D simulation (and super compact Mitsubishi robots) users are able to optimise production, carry out capacity calculations and bottleneck analysis, optimise buffer sizes, carry out production strategy studies and ultimately reduce design-to-operation time. As the simulation code is the base of the Robot program, it dramatically reduces the development time on the robot side too.

Mr. Thomas Lantermann, Business Development Manager at Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., Factory Automation – European Business Group, commented “The PDFs created with this software provide an excellent tool for automation professionals for quickly demonstrating how a robot can be integrated into any new or existing situation. Using such a universal and easy to use format for viewing and interaction is really a huge benefit to communication and understanding of automation applications to a wider audience; i.e. quickly presenting and sharing development ideas, which can only be of benefit to us and our customers.”