You will need a Quadrature encoder attached to the conveyor, typically near the robot. Its wired to the robot controller line tracking module.
You will also need a start switch typically located near the robot, sometimes in the spray booth, that will initiate the tracking of the conveyor.
The first step in PaintTOOL tracking set up is to establish the scale factor of the line tracking encoder. Following the PaintTOOL menu prompts, jog the robot to a point on the part at the entry of the robot's working window and record the point. Follow next prompt instructions and move the part down stream and then re-teach the same point.
PaintTOOL calculates the scale factor in pulses per mm of travel.
Also you will need to measure and record the distance along the conveyor from the center of the robot to the tracking detect limit switch.
The tracking frame is the coordinate frame the robot uses for shifting of the path along the conveyor. Typical paint robot installations have the robot perpendicular to the conveyor and all that is required is to define the direction on conveyor travel past the robot.
PaintTOOL tracking boundaries are virtual walls that define the area where the robot plays back the tracking path. To define the working window, follow the prompts to establish the in and out bound windows.
Path teaching occurs with the part stationary. The example shows the recorded points in the simple path. The gun on and off positions are defined at the desired locations.
During playback, PaintTOOL Tracking Software segments the path into paint strokes defined as a series of positions between gun on and gun off instruction. The software calculates the position of the robot and path and will not start a paint stroke until the entire stoke is within the defined boundaries. This ensures the robot does not stop in mid stroke if the line stops, eliminating paint build ups or gun spits on the part. When the line starts back up, the robot is ready to resume the process.
In this example, each segment is paint on / off stroke and you can see the robot track with the conveyor line until each stoke is within the robot boundaries.
In this next example, the overall motion remains the same but the only off node is at the end of the path as opposed to each stroke.
Process engineers use this functionality to define precise paint application paths for both large and small parts.