P4Q Electronics is increasing its production throughput by 25% by deploying smart, adaptable automation on the factory floor. Rethink Robotics' Sawyer is testing PCBs and driving improvements in process consistency that are resulting in better part quality and overall production output.
P4Q has been looking to automate more of its factory to improve efficiency and consistency, but traditional caged robots were unappealing due to high costs and employee safety concerns. After purchasing Sawyer, the company deployed the robot in just a few hours and is using and considering the robot for several additional tasks in addition to PCB testing. This includes inspecting parts, taking pictures for quality insurance, picking and placing, and line loading and unloading.
"Automating critical tasks in our production process has long been a priority, but we struggled to do it affordably," said Alejandro Caballero, operation manager, P4Q Electronics. "With Sawyer, we have a cost-effective solution that improves the consistency of the process, which leads to better part quality and increased productivity. It's given our organization a competitive advantage beyond what we expected."
Founded in 1999, P4Q is an electronic design and manufacturing company based in Alonsotegi, Spain with a focus on renewable energy, automotive, industrial and railway applications. The company's portfolio of products includes train control and power systems, solar tracking controllers, LED applications for the automobile industry, controllers for wind turbines and more.
"A predictable, controlled process is critical to delivering quality product to customers, and, like many organizations, P4Q turned to automation to ensure consistency and predictability," said Jim Lawton, COO, Rethink Robotics. "Sawyer affordably automates key processes and reduces the variability that often comes with humans performing the same task. By automating just one critical factory floor task, undesirable process variation can be greatly reduced."
P4Q plans to assign additional tasks to Sawyer moving forward, with the goal of 100 percent part quality. Additionally, P4Q is hiring additional personnel with the stated goal of finding additional areas to implement collaborative robots and automate the production process even further.
About Rethink Robotics
Rethink Robotics is transforming the way manufacturing gets done, with smart, collaborative robots able to automate the 90 percent of tasks that until now, have been beyond the reach of traditional automation. Its Baxter® and Sawyer robots, powered by the Intera software platform, adapt to real-world variability, can change applications quickly and perform tasks like people do. The result: manufacturers of all shapes, sizes and industries get the fast-to-deploy, easy-to-use and versatile automation solution they need to increase flexibility, lower cost and accelerate innovation.