Ultrasonic welding suits small plastic part assembly

Precise control for faster, repeatable, high quality welding of intricate components is offered by the Branson GSX platform launched by Emerson.

The industrial IoT (IIoT) –enabled ultrasonic welders support the growing demand for the assembly of smaller and more intricate plastic components. The Branson GSX ultrasonic welding platform is intuitive and flexible, claims Emerson.

Plastic components across the medical, electronics, and automotive industries are becoming increasingly smaller, and with embedded electronics, intricate designs and thinner plastic walls. Conventional welders with high or crushing trigger forces inhibit customers to safely weld small and fragile parts. To meet this challenge, Emerson has developed an electro-mechanical actuation system that it claims can provide unprecedented control and position accuracy. It combines servo-mechanism, software optimisation and Branson proprietary dynamic follow-through to enable a broad range of trigger forces to be applied, including what Emerson claims is the industry’s lowest, ensuring weld precision and control. The actuation system also enables the GSX to improve position accuracy, leading to faster, high performance welding of very fragile and intricate components.

The configurable GSX welding platform enables customers to accommodate many different parts and application types by using an array of welding parameters and actuation modes during a single weld. This ensures better, consistent, quality welds leading to fewer rejects. Using a multi-core processor and a linear encoder drive, the multi-tier actuation system can be instantaneously adjusted based on real-time feedback. This ensures the same level of precision and repeatability across multiple welders.

The modular GSX platform forms the basis for a wide range of models to be launched over the next two years, each designed to suit the needs of specific customer applications. The platform can be configured for all customer environments, ranging from standalone benchtop systems to semi- and fully-automated manufacturing lines. By offering easy integration into a digital environment and standardised transfer of relevant data, the GSX platform is industry 4.0/IIoT-enabled, providing access to performance and diagnostic data, supporting production efficiency, traceability and maintenance improvements.

Helping to bridge any potential skills gaps, the GSX features simple and intuitive software, supported by four- and 12-inch touchscreen HMIs, which enable operators to perform faster, correct set-ups and reduce application testing time. This leads to faster start-up, by up to 60% in most application cases, with an assurance of weld quality and increased production efficiency. By retaining alignment information and set-up within the assembly, a GSX stack and tooling can be replaced in less than five minutes compared to conventional ultrasonic welders which can take over one hour, reports the company.


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