Welding robot ignites teaching and research


Senior technical officer Hemangi Surti controls the welding robot at NACOG

Senior technical officer Hemangi Surti controls the welding robot at NACOG

The latest development in welding technology in the form of a robot has arrived on Charles Darwin University’s Casuarina campus, sparking great interest among researchers and students at the North Australian Centre for Oil and Gas (NACOG).

The welding robot will help to train the Northern Territory’s future mechanical, electrical and electronics engineers, and also assist with oil and gas-related research.

Associate Professor in Engineering Krishnan Kannoorpatti said the technology would help teach engineering students the concepts behind mechatronics and manufacturing and also assist CDU researchers with metallurgy research.

“Many oil and gas companies are investing in this type of technology and our engineering students need to understand the mechatronics associated with controlling robots and the associated software,” Professor Kannoorpatti said.

“The robot offers them the opportunity to learn motion control and the option to conduct research into “robotic vision” and how to manipulate the technology software to adapt the robot for specific welding projects in the NT. It will offer students first-hand experience with the technology before they enter the workforce.”

Professor Kannoorpatti said the new technology also offered CDU researchers an opportunity to advance oil and gas research.

“Research into metallurgy helps us understand the microstructure of a material and how changes made to the structure such as welding may cause defects or improve resistance to a material,” Professor Kannoorpatti said. “This technology will help to inform us about the strength of welds and the structural integrity of material.

“Used in conjunction with the failure analysis equipment already housed at NACOG, it will aid our research into improving structural integrity and help us to assist industry to ensure their welding procedures are of the required standard for oil and gas processing.”

The welding robot is housed in the corrosion laboratory in building Pink 7 (NACOG) on Casuarina campus.

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