Tectra Automation enhances BEKA production capabilities
Tectra Automation supplied a new semi-automated manual production system (MPS) for BEKA Schréder’s Olifantsfontein factory to assist in the assembly of 4 recently designed LED light ranges. The production line configuration replaces a more batch-oriented production environment, and in so doing has increased the productivity of the facility by more than 50% (on average).
It was a turnkey project that included the design, supply, factory acceptance testing, integration and commissioning of the MPS, including its electrical installation.
Four production lines, with five workstations per line, were provided to assemble the four light ranges. The lines are configured to each produce a light range – though they can also be interchanged as required.
The five workstations are connected in a 10 m-long lane of aluminium rails and roller bearings, where operators assemble units on purpose-built aluminium trays. Tectra Automation fitted these trays with specialised 3D-printed mounting blocks that provide a safe, reliable grip of the units during assembly, contributing to improved workmanship and product quality.
At the end of the production line, light units are removed from the tray for quality inspection. The tray then enters a lowering station, where it is automatically lowered to a return line and delivered to the front of the production line. Trays can accumulate one behind the other before being fed to the top one by one.
All production line lifting and lowering requirements are achieved through a maintenance-free pneumatic system. Tectra Automation supplied valves, pneumatic actuators, air supply units and filtration systems. “We used the Aventics new AV03 valve to control each pneumatic cylinder,” explains Jaco de Beer, Project Engineer, Tectra Automation. “This valve is ideally suited to these types of applications because of its compact, neat, all-in-one functionality.”
The MPS was installed over a 3-week period at the end of November 2015, with other necessary changes to production prepared and implemented during the year-end shutdown.
The four light ranges, OMNIStar, LEDlume-maxi, LEDlume-midi and LEDlume-mini, are used in street and highway lighting. These white-light LED luminaires deliver exceptional colour rendering and visibility over a long lifespan, and are highly efficient in energy consumption. Such is the success of the products that they will soon be exported to Europe.
The new semi-automated manual production system from Tectra Automation has a production line configuration that replaces a batch-orientated production, increasing productivity by more than 50%.