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Original Publication Date: 1996-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2002-May-03
Document File: 2 page(s) / 102K

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Scott Hovey: AUTHOR [+1]


Manufacturing and assembly lines are normally gated by the slowest cell. To eliminate the impact of slower cells replicates are often placed in parallel. Unfortunately, implementation requires adding addi- tional material handling to move product from the main manufacturing line to the duplicate equipment. This method has the disadvantages of increasing the depth ofthe overall line and substantial cost for the material handling equipment.

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Technical Developments


by Scott Hovey and Carl Davis

systems that is unobstructed during each machine's operation.

  Example: A SMT line consists of a dispenser followed by a pick and place, then a second dispen- ser, and finally a cure oven. The outputs are 1100 UPH, 500 UPH, 1000 UPH, and 1300 UPH, respec- tively. In order to increase the volume output by 2X, the pick and place machine could be replicated and placed in parallel. This would boost the output horn 500 UPH to rougly 1000 UPH with only incur- ring the capital cost of the one additional pick and place machine.

  In order to accomplish this without adding addi- tional conveyors and transfer mechanisms to feed both pick and place machines in parallel, the two pick and place machines could be fitted with an assembly similar to that in the cross sectional views shown in the Figures below. In Fig. A, the work- station of the pick and place is waiting for material to arrive. In Fig. B, the material has been stopped on the conveyor belt at the workstation. In Fig. C, the lift moves the material up against a top plate, which is then retained against the top plate by side clamps. In Fig. D, the lifi has been retracted below the conveyor belt which allows other material to flow through the machine unobstructed. This unobstructed path along the single conveyor would allow replicate machinery to be fed with material.


  Manufacturing and assembly lines are normal...