Welding operations on the edges of blocks and sections of a ship in the dock or in the slipway, especially as regards the interior of the ship, are usually carried out in confined spaces : double bottoms, tanks, holds, double hulls, etc.
At present the majority of those erection welds are manual. Erection welds length amounts to about 10 % of the total weldings on the ship, whereas the costs and times required to carry out the operations are about 6 or 7 times greater than those for welding operations in the workshops, where the blocks and sections are constructed.
The aim of the research is to design and develop a prototype of a novel robotic welding system, expected to provide the following advantages : automate erection welding as much as possible; eliminate the presence of man in confined areas where such welding is to be carried out; allow the activity control from an external position in safe conditions, allow one operator to control several automatic machines to further improve yard productivity.
The steps foreseen for developing the research are :
- definition of system requirements
- system design
- preliminary tests of critical components
- detail subsystem design, based on critical component test results
- prototypes construction and functional tests
- site tests on ship section mock-ups.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
28500 Arganda Del Rey/madrid