Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 32

West

Raytheon Missile Systems

concentrate on building hardware
instead of manning test stations.
"Our operators are skilled workforce, so we want to leverage their
skills," she says.
The company's advanced automation capabilities also have proven useful in testing the small satellites that
make up a portion of Raytheon's product mix. These smaller satellites are
used by the Department of Defense's
Defense Advanced Research Projects
Agency (DARPA) to provide rapid
imaging of terrain for U.S. ground
troops. Raytheon utilizes automated
robots to put those satellites through
flight simulation tests, moving them
around in three dimensions to test
them and ensure they can withstand
the conditions.
Senior Manager in Operations for
Advanced Manufacturing Bob Erick32

manufacturing-today.com NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2016

son says automation also has done a
lot in recent years to reduce the burden of material handling for workers
on the production floor. Thanks to
the advances in automation technology over the last several years, missiles can be moved safely between

"i would say the precision of automation,
being able to get that
into very small spaces, has advanced tremendously."
workstations to reduce the potential
for human error and create a safer
working environment for Raytheon's employees. "Those two areas are
where we focus our automation," Erickson says.

According to Ernzen, Raytheon's
Tucson facility utilizes automated
guided vehicles to move materials
and components from kitting stations to work stations. Once these
vehicles arrive at a workstation, they
sync information about what is on
them with the workstation, letting
the operator know exactly what is on
the cart and ensuring that the material is at the correct workstation at the
correct phase of production. Because
the vehicles and workstations are
linked together, there is no chance of
variation in the production process,
meaning the finished products are
free from defects and operators are
protected from the more dangerous
aspects of the complex processes on
the production floor. "The more that
we can protect our people from the
potential dangerous outcomes for


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016

Table Of Contents
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover1
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover2
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 1
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Table Of Contents
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 3
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 4
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Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover3
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover4
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