Robot grippers are the physical interface between a robot arm and the work piece. The end-of-arm tooling (EOAT) is a crucial part of the robot and will significantly reduce part damages when materials are handled with the robot thus limiting human intervention and error. A gripper will come in direct contact with the product, so it’s important to select the right type of robot grippers to fit the operational needs.
There are four types or robotic grippers to choose from – Mechanical Grippers, Suction/Vacuum Grippers, Pneumatic grippers and Servo-electric Grippers. The decision on which to use will be determined by how the Manufacturer intend to handle the product and the type of material in use.
Mechanical Grippers typically perform functions like material handling, pick & place, and machine loading/unloading. This type of EOAT is commonly used in high volume case palletizing operations. Buildtech has experience in designing and fabricating palletizing gripper in industries such as F&B, Automotive, logistics and many more.
This type of robot gripper uses a rubber or polyurethane suction cup to pick up items. Some Vacuum Grippers use a closed-cell foam rubber layer rather than suction cups to complete the application. With either type of Vacuum Grippers, these EOAT used in manufacturing are the preferred choice due to it’s high level of flexibility.
The Pneumatic Gripper is popular due to its compact size and light weight. It can be easily incorporated into tight spaces which can be helpful in the manufacturing industry. Pneumatic Grippers can either operate opened or closed, earning them the nickname “bang bang” actuators – after the noise created when the “metal-on-metal” gripper operates.
The Servo-electric Grippers appears more and more in industrial settings due to the fact that it is easy to control as the movement of the Gripper jaws are controlled by electronic motors. These gripers are highly flexible and allows for different material tolerances when handling parts. They are also a cost-effective option because they are clean and have no air lines.