Independently of food, beverage or pharmaceutical industries, chemicals, bio-technique or air conditioning, at the shipyard, on a power plant construction site or in hydraulic systems: for many applications tubes and pipes – at a high standard of quality, exactly formed and machined – are key products for successful market presence. Manufacturing of sophisticated customer-specific pipework in large quantities at competitive prizes on the quality level of standard products represents a serious challenge. Thus, for a superior and economic fabrication of complex tube and pipe geometries intelligent manufacturing solutions are required: the modular extensible manufacturing system from the PIPE BENDING SYSTEMS (PBS) division TRACTO-TECHNIK supports the workflow of tubes and pipes in an efficient and flexible manner. The modules of the system – bending machine, measuring technique and software – cooperate in a unique way.
Dr. Christan Gerlach, head of business area of PBS, explains: „Numerous excellent examples of the implantation of our efficient system can be seen in the field of high-prized, high quality tube production for machines for special applications. Rarely a tube geometry appears twice, most of them are unique – finally one-of-a-kind products. Today one of the most important manufacturers of food processing lines worldwide produces the tubes for the daily assembly of his apparatuses nearly just in time (during the year, in one single plant several hundred kilometres of tubes are installed). Of course each bend or elbow must be suitable.”
The workflow of the system is managed by a software module named PIPEFAB: beginning at the supply of the pipe from the high-rack, followed by the machining operations – marking, sawing, bending, deburring, welding – up to the finished part. „If the customer owns several plants, PIPEFAB is able to propose the actually most efficient site for the production of each part on the whole globe. Already now we of TRACTO-TECHNIK create the basis for global applications of digital engineering and manufacturing of piping network within the meaning of Industry 4.0. Our system applies independently of installing connecting pipes or manufacturing manually or automatically in the workshop” resumes Dr. Gerlach.