With the help of the Handling partial system simple functions of an industrial robot can be implemented. The main difference compared to the conveyor belt is that the Handling can move a workpiece on the x- and y-axis in a controlled manner and can even adjust any level differences between the transition points of the individual modules. It is an electro-pneumatic system basically consisting of two pneumatic linear axes, a pneumatic gripper (mechanic two-jaw-grab - alternatively a vacuum gripper), three valves for controlling the pneumatic actuators as well as four magnetic end switches for the position recording of the axes.
The Handling is clearly that part of the MecLab system that was subject to the most and radical changes in the course of the research and development work. Prior to today´s solution, three versions in total were developed, constructed and tried out with students or school students at the test schools. The first versions of this "Pick & Place"- device partly looked completely different, however, they were technically absolutely sophisticated. Nevertheless, from the didactic point of view and as confirmed by the trials at school, they left too little scope for the school students´ work with and on the system. Thus, the technical changes were primarily intended for didactic reasons.
The Handling partial system can undertake several tasks:
- Transport of a workpiece with adjusting any level differences
- Joining bottoms and tops of workpieces
- Sorting and assembly functions can be carried out in collaboration with the other partial systems of MecLab
This partial system even already makes the fulfillment of relatively complex tasks within automation engineering possible that can be used for the development of school students´ competences in pneumatics, electrical engineering and control engineering.