Shipbuilder Fincantieri and Comau Robotics, two Italian industrial giants in their respective markets, have signed a letter of intent to develop prototypes of robotized steel welding solutions and the resulting construction of series of machines, to be implemented at first in Fincantieri shipyards.
Paolo Carmassi, Comau CEO, and Fabio Gallia, Fincantieri general manager, signed the agreement.
The first joint project, of which the operating agreement is currently under way and related tests are scheduled at the Fincantieri shipyards by the first half of the year 2022, will involve a welding robot vehicle consisting of an anthropomorphic welding robot and a remote control tracked vehicle.
Fincantieri and Comau will be co-owners of the knowhow and intellectual property generated while developing the new concept design.
At a later stage, they will explore the possibility of marketing this kind of welding product not only in the shipbuilding industry, but also in relevant business segments, such as the production of large size steel products for infrastructure and special works – for example, continuous structures for suspension bridges, structures for large size hoisting systems, products for special constructions.
Moreover, the companies agreed to continue considering and examining new opportunities to create highly innovative solutions and contents within the broader scope of a Digital Factory.
Carmassi said: “Comau has always been committed to the design and development of cutting-edge processes and technologies that allow us to provide our customers and partners with unique solutions that meet the challenges of an ever-changing market.
“The collaboration with Fincantieri gives us the opportunity to join forces with a leading company on an innovative project that aims to extend the benefits of automation and robotics to new sectors.”
Gallia said: “This partnership is an important innovation for the shipbuilding industry.
“Apart from improving the safety of workers and their ergonomic working conditions, these solutions will enable great progress in pursuing the competitiveness of our production system.
“Moreover, looking to the future, the possibility of developing projects together with Comau is a great opportunity to further broaden the Group’s range of competencies.”