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Canadian firm expands high speed robotic cladding technology

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A Canadian firm with an innovative high-speed robotic weld cladding process has received a Japanese patent and is on its way to obtaining a European patent to expand the use of the process around the globe.

We spoke to the man behind the technology, Tennyson Harris, president of Technical and Automation Help (TAH) Corp., Brampton, ON, to find out about new developments.

“The patent in Japan will allow us to have a foothold in the Asian markets. We’re in the process of obtaining a patent for Europe as well, and we are in discussions with several larger manufacturers in the US to adopt this technology,” explains Tennyson.

Tennyson and his team developed the high-speed robotic weld cladding system to address wear and corrosion issues for a variety of markets such as tube and pipe, structural steel, shipbuilding and nuclear energy.

“This system is designed for most structures that suffer from corrosion so it can be adopted for bridges and bridge components, low alloy construction steel, pipelines, the nuclear industry, military, shipbuilding and other infrastructure that would be vulnerable to corrosion. This process could even be used to clad patio chairs so they can have a longer life,” explains Harris.

National Research Council Canada’s (NRC) Energy, Mining and Environmental portfolio in Vancouver, BC, purchased a robotic cladding system from TAH. It consists of a KUKA KR 60 L30 HA robot with a KUKA KL 1000-2 slide and a KUKA DKP 400 two-axis positioner and a Fronius Cold Metal Transfer (CMT) Twin system, a tandem welding process. KUKA Robotics also integrated the welding system with the robot.

However, Harris says that his technology can be used on various combinations of robot and welding systems.

“As long as the equipment provides us with the output we need – and the specific output is a trade secret – we can use it. The robot has to have high accuracy of 0.004 thousandths of inch repeatability and the welding system has to have the ability to put down a lot of material generating very little heat.”

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