Leverages decades of robotic process expertise to develop cutting and trimming solutions for the advanced materials the Automotive industry is using.

WKW Automotive, a major Tier 1 supplier, has awarded Shape Process Automation, a program valued at approximately $15MUSD to provide two inline laser systems complete with material handling capabilities.

This program has the potential to be the highest throughput aluminum robotic laser cutting line in the world.

Shape Process Automation’s solution reduces cost and floor space by nearly 50% by utilizing the NEWTON┬« technology compared to traditional robots that articulate a cutting head. Laser cutting assembly lines with NEWTON enable customers to reduce their long-term program cost by eliminating direct labor, reducing engineering floor labor, increasing quality, and sustaining long term OEE gains. “WKW is excited to work with world-class technology in delivering industry-leading aluminum fabrications,” said Prakash Patel, Director, Program Management at WKW Automotive.

This project will push Shape Process Automation’s install base of robotic laser cutting robots to surpass 50 units in 3 years. An achievement that would not be possible without repeat customers, SPA’s professional team, and proven suppliers like FANUC Robotics and TRUMPF laser sources.

“This automated production line incorporates the latest in robotic laser cutting, delivering big gains for cutting 3-D automotive components via the Newton cutting head technology. Combined with our other fully integrated manufacturing processes and numerous operational enhancing upgrades, this technology essentially represents the culmination of our 35 years of experience in the industry”, said Nino LaDuca, President of Shape Process Automation. “SPA has supported automotive programs dating back to the 1980s, first on the trimming of automotive interior parts and through to the very latest lightweight structural automotive parts. Being awarded this project demonstrates that Shape Process Automation continues to lead the industry in both design and technology.”

Automotive light-weighting is the concept of using advanced materials such as ultra-high-strength steel (UHSS), aluminum, and other lighter composite materials to reduce the weight of a vehicle to meet increasingly stricter government regulations. Lowering a vehicle’s bodyweight reduced emissions and improves fuel efficiency without compromising safety or performance.

These lightweight materials vary in their methods of assembly and processing (compared to traditional steel). As such, automotive OEM’s & Tiers depend on those in the industry who understand these unique properties and have a proven history of expertise in processing them efficiently and effectively while maintaining the materials’ integrity.

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About Shape Process Automation
Shape Process Automation is the leader in advanced materials processing. Our expertise in waterjet, router, and laser cutting solutions spans decades. Through our unique state-of-the-art Customer Solution Center, we can provide proof of concept for processing a variety of composite materials. Our customers have come to rely on us to provide the technology and know-how to help them realize their light weighting objectives.

Shape Process Automation is a leading supplier of custom factory automation and advanced materials processing solutions. Since the mid-1980s, we’ve designed and installed over 6,000 systems in more than 70 countries, providing world-class solutions and service to the world’s largest companies across multiple industries, locally and around the globe. For more information, visit www.shapeprocessautomation.com.