Jaguar Land Rover production in pole position
Jaguar Land Rover is the largest and one of the most famous automotive manufacturers in the United Kingdom, making up more than 30% of all domestic car production in 2016. In 2015, with plans to launch three new models, JLR needed to find a company able to supply flexible and innovative control systems to keep production rates high, accurate and reliable.
Working in partnership with a leading production facility manufacturer Comau UK, L3 MacDonald Humfrey Automation was commissioned to deploy 280 robots to build the underbody of three new models, the Jaguar XE, F-Pace and E-Pace. With more than 30 years of experience in the automotive industry, L3 MacDonald Humfrey Automation was able to provide a customized systems integration and control package for JLR.
A key project deliverable was virtual commissioning. Using information from the mechanical design team, L3 MacDonald Humfrey Automation created a 3-D model of the production line, including all moving parts. This allowed the complete facility to be "commissioned" in an offline environment including all robot paths and PLC control. Offline commissioning provided the platform to allow the design team to review the facility, identify risks and opportunities, and resolve issues prior to delivery of the complete control system solution to the shop floor.
The virtual commissioning environment also allowed the JLR team to review progress through the stages of commissioning and enabled MHA to prove compliance to design intent and achieve customer acceptance of the facility before shop floor integration, resulting in reduced time required on-site for production maturity.
“At L3 MacDonald Humfrey, we add significant value by delivering a solution that bridges developments among robotics, innovation, technology and the production facility,” says Andy Roe, Senior Project Manager at L3 MacDonald Humfrey Automation.
Following deployment of the solution, JLR has continued to be the UK’s largest automotive manufacturer, now producing more than 500,000 cars each year. The F-Pace is Jaguar’s highest volume model and pushed production up by 67%. The car went on to win both the World Car of the Year and World Car Design of the Year awards at the World Car Awards 2017.