SHOP4CF stands for Smart Human Oriented Platform for Connected Factories and is...
Upfront challenges faced by the assembly workers and engineers
Volkswagen Wrzesnia factory situated in Poland has been established for the manufacturing of VW Crafter since 2016. The plant is equipped with a modern paintshop, assembly section customised cars section, pilot production and supplier park, with a production capacity of 100k cars per year. The challenge for assembly workers resides in the fact that, although the crafter car only has 69 base versions, there can be as many as 99 million+ variations in customised design.
1.Chassis Shielding protecting assembly pins and holes
In the manual assembly stations, the specification of the particular car is presented on the displays positioned in the assembly areas. Control of the process is guided by the product numbers connected with the supervisory systems tracking the current position of the car body in the production cycle. Many of the workcells such as the paintshop are automatized and equipped with vision systems integrated with robotic arms – the vision systems are used to estimate the position of the body before applying the mass. However, this is not true for the entire production line, and workers still need to work in extremely uncomfortable conditions, is the chassis shielding section where the assembly pins and holes need to be protected before application of PVC. These assembly tasks often require, that workers place their hands above the line of the head.
2.Visual inspection of paint quality
The visual inspection of the paint quality of the finished bodies needs to be automatized to increase ergonomics and allow workers to shift from manual labor to supervision of (semi-) automated stations. Due to the fact that 80% of commercial vehicles is white the visual inspection causes eye-tiredness and reduces capability to spot potential errors. The challenge lies in controlling the assembly of protective caps, evaluation of the assembly quality and cap removal after PVC application. The proposed solution needs to be integrated with the above mentioned IT solutions used in the factory.
Place protective caps on the car body before PVC application
Final quality check of the paint
Both pilot cases at VW will use knowledge extraction and intuitive programming of robots to cope with a large number of production variants. Both cases will be initially deployed in the production piloting area of the plant and later in the actual production lines.
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