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Swinburne University of Technology has collaborated with Sydney-based industrial automation firm Tradiebot Industries and automotive aftercare company AMA Group to 3D print a replacement lug for an automotive headlamp assembly using a robotic arm.
Initially funded by a sum of $1,264,695 AUD (approx. $994 thousand USD) in 2018, the collaboration is part of the ‘Repairbot’ project, which is backed by the Innovative Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre (IMCRC). The organization is a not-for-profit, independent cooperative research centre launched by the Australian government to help Australian companies increase their global relevance.
Part - Repairbot - Project - Swinburne - Tradiebot
As part of the Repairbot project, Swinburne, Tradiebot and AMA Group are developing an automated, 3D printed repair service for cars. The project aims to create a low cost repair service that can be commercially implemented with same-day fixes of damaged vehicles.
“The Repairbot project is a great example of industry and research collaboration. The researchers at Swinburne have wholeheartedly embraced Tradiebot’s idea of developing a technology-driven solution that will automate the repair service for automotive plastic parts,” explained David Chuter, CEO and Managing Director of IMCRC.
REACHING - THIS - MAJOR - MILESTONE - DEMONSTRATES
“REACHING THIS MAJOR MILESTONE DEMONSTRATES HOW COMMITTED THEY ARE TO PUSHING MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGY BOUNDARIES TO HELP SOLVE AN INDUSTRY SPECIFIC PROBLEM THAT HAS THE POTENTIAL TO NOT ONLY TRANSFORM TRADIEBOT’S BUSINESS BUT THE WHOLE AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR INDUSTRY. IMCRC AS A COLLABORATIVE PARTNER IS PROUD TO HELP CATALYSE THESE TRANSFORMATIVE OUTCOMES.”
The Repairbot in action. Image via Swinburne University of Technology.
Printing - Lug - Housing - Headlight - Robotics
The 3D printing of the lug directly onto the housing of the headlight was engineered by the robotics team at Swinburne, led by Dr Mats Isaksson. The team used a robotic arm to hold and precisely maneuver the headlight underneath a stationary 3D printing head. This meant the robotics team could 3D print the complex geometries of the replacement lug without the use of support material.
Dr Isaksson sees...
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