Digital interface for automated kitting

Composites specialist Airborne is collaborating with a software company to create a digital interface for automated kitting.

According to the company it plans to integrate its automated kitting solution and JETCAM’s CrossTrack composite material tracking software.

Airborne says that this will make it easier to exchange data between the two systems as plies are unloaded from the cutting table and then automatically sorted into ordered kits by the Airborne’s kitting system. As the operator loads each ply to the kitting machine it is scanned and its shape identified, along with its stacking order. The robot sorts, sequences and stacks all subsequent plies until the kit is complete, automatically updating its status within CrossTrack without any user input. When the completed kit leaves the buffer its location status is updated, automating the process from cutting through to moving onto layup.

‘Many companies move from producing static single kit nests to using nesting software, creating highly efficient dynamic nests, often containing multiple kits,’ said Martin Bailey, General Manager at JETCAM International. ‘However, this leads to bottlenecks at the cutter as staff try to unload and sort plies into kits, often removing some or all of the material savings made.’

This story uses material from Airborne, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.