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Automated Brazing for Low Carbon Transport

Automated Fusion Welding is a metal joining technology capable of joining steel, aluminium or combining the two. The technology enables increased production speed and quantity, leading to savings in both time and cost. WMG working with a bicycle manufacturer to investigate potential changes to their production process.

 

Research Challenge

To investigate and demonstrate robotic brazing of bicycle frames that could match the manufacturer's high quality, traditional handmade joins and to establish whether the capital equipment and robotic brazing process was the correct technology for series production.

Outcomes

WMG's Automation and Manufacturing research team carried out a series of tests to verify whether the brazing process and technology met the manufacturer's requirements. The information was summarised in a business case which included an investment cost analysis, calculation of the reduction in man hours and calculation of increased production numbers.

During the testing and trialling exercise, the bicycle manufacturer gained knowledge of, and confidence in, the technology and process, discovered the technology's strengths and drawbacks and gained an understanding of the tools required to create an effective brazing process and bicycle join to fit the manufacturer's frame requirements.

Without the expert advice and access to the welding technology provided by WMG, it would have been difficult for the bicycle manufacturer to fully understand whether the technology matched the requirements of their bicycle frames, whether to risk a potentially large investment and subsequently make changes to their manufacturing processes.

Welding Demonstration at WMG: