Electric Vacuum Pump Unit for Cobots

Piab's piCOBOT® Electric eliminates the need for compressed air and tubing, allowing for unrestricted cobot arm movement and simplified installation.

Piab Pi Cobot Electric

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Piab's piCOBOT® Electric is fully electric, features a slim design, and doesn't require air-tubing and cabling. 

"This is the most versatile and energy-efficient electric pump unit on the market for cobot applications," says Madeleine Sheikh, Global Product Manager at Piab Group.

It is an established fact that the piCOBOT® program has been a success ever since its original introduction in 2017. The groundbreaking first piCOBOT® model was in 2022 accompanied by the larger, even more powerful, piCOBOT® L model.

"Both air-driven models undoubtedly represent the top segment of that part of the cobot applications market. They are efficient, reliable and exceedingly versatile, especially combined with all their clever accessories," says Sheikh.

Electricity instead of compressed air

As part of the company's ever-evolving product development, Piab's engineers last year focused on a version that would perform on the same level as its sibling piCOBOT®, but without the need for compressed air.

"We receive a lot of requests from companies that want to use cobots in work areas where no compressed-air infrastructure is present. Our new piCOBOT® Electric hits that target perfectly," says Sheikh.

But the developments do not end with electrification. During the pre-study, Madeleine and the R&D team compiled an agenda containing a number of tough prerequisites.

"First of all, it had to be small. Despite its advanced electric drive, we wanted direct mounting on the cobot arm. Secondly, it had to be energy efficient. The electric current provided by the cobot itself should be sufficient. And, yeah, we solved that," says Sheikh.

Free cobot arm movement

A secondary effect of these achievements is the absence of entangling air tubing and cabling. It simplifies the installation, and as the new piCOBOT® Electric only needs a single connection on the cobot arm, the clean set-up allows a completely unrestricted movement.

"With that last barrier eliminated, I'd say this is the most versatile and energy efficient electric pump unit on the market for cobot applications," Sheikh concludes.

The new piCOBOT® Electric package will contain plug & play software to fit UR e-series cobots, but many other useful adaptations will be introduced the coming year.

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