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February 2013

Building Machines to Automate a Process

Paul Simmons, our customer service technician, is featured on Control Design

“As a machine builder that does 80–90% of its business in one-off custom projects, we’re accustomed to working closely with manufacturers to build an automation solution for the products they make. They have a goal and a proven process. They need us to build a machine to automate that process.

For a recent customer, however, the process was less refined from the start, so we got involved at a deeper level. I worked very closely with the process engineers and chemical engineers to develop the process, and we were able to create a very successful machine implementation to improve automation.

The assembly system was needed for high-end custom eyeglass lenses. The lenses are made of three layers of parts: the base, the lens polymer, and the cap. The manufacturer required an automated system that would begin by placing a layer of adhesive on the outside of the base. Once the adhesive was in place, the cap was to be placed on top, creating an open chamber between the base and the cap. After the adhesive was cured with a UV light, a lens polymer was injected into the open chamber.”

Read more on Control Design.