Automatisation en Micro-Assemblage
Ciposa NEWS: How would you describe yourself ?
Sebastian: I'm a guy who enjoys discovering new things, I don't like monotony and repetitive tasks.
CN: What is your main hobby?
SEB: The world of old timers, I like to restore them as much as I like to drive them.
CN: I’ve heard that in the summertime you run a coffee truck at “Le Bois du Petit-Château” in La Chaux-de-Fonds. How did you get this idea?
SEB: I wanted to carry out a personal project bringing together four topics that are important for me: the world of the old VW bus, travel, coffee and energy autonomy.
I prepare my coffees in full autonomy in my VW bus. First of all, I use solar thermal energy to boil my water with the help of a parabola.
The freezer and the sink pump are powered by photovoltaic solar energy. Finally, the arms power to grind the beans - with a 1930 grinder - and operate my coffee machines.
CN: What is your job at Ciposa ?
SEB: I'm a process manager.
CN: What does it consist of?
SEB: The goal of my job is to look for the best way to integrate new processes on our machines. I combine theory and practice to test the limits of the submitted material.
I work closely with the technical department to ensure that the new process is well integrated into the construction of future machines.
I often have to prepare trial benches, to test or make a process or concept reliable before presenting it to our client.
CN: How long have you been working at Ciposa ?
SEB: Around 3 years.
CN: What is your background?
SEB: I am a polymechanics.
CN: What do you like in your job?
SEB: The possibility of helping to win new projects by getting involved in tasks that come well ahead of them. With every successful demonstration, I tell myself that it will give work to my friends/colleagues.
CN: It seems that the human dimension is an important factor for you?
SEB: Indeed, for me the human aspect is very important, even primordial. A person who is fine, functions better in general. Whether in his job or in his private life.
CN: I've heard about "POC", what could you tell me about it?
SEB: This is the acronym for "Proof Of Concept".
It is a process that aims two main expectations.
Ours, because after a project risk analysis, this allows us to test and validate the concepts and provide to our Mechanical Engineering department important information to consider in the design phase.
For our customers, because it allows us to demonstrate them the feasibility of a process, whether assembly, inspection, lubrication or other.
In most cases, this will be done by means of a simplified but perfectly functional "module" on which we carry out "full-scale" tests with customers' products.
This is an important step, that validates the choices made and will allow the investment phase.
Moreover, this service meets a third expectation. Customers come to us for our know-how in this field and ask us to achieve a specific POC. It allows them to check process feasibility and/or its related constraints, regardless of its eventual integration into automated equipment.
CN: Without disclosing any secrets, could you tell me about one or two dispensing projects you are working on currently?
SEB: It is true that we are very active in the field of micro-dosing, here are two of them.
The first project is the application of drops of oil in the range of 1 to 20 nL on various watchmaking components.
Our trials were to demonstrate that we could deposit oil on a vertical axis, a horizontal area or between wheel teeth. On various components such as minute or second wheel, reverser, bridges or escape wheel.
CN: What was the most difficult point to solve?
SEB: The repeatability of the process is very important here, being able to guarantee the quantities applied within a volume tolerance of 3%. To achieve this, the system must operate repeatedly, even when environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure or static electricity fluctuate.
CN: What is the second project?
SEB: The second is the contactless application of a thread of grease on threading. In this case, the most difficult point was to find the correct settings to carry out the dosage by jetting, without any presence of satellites (undesired splashes) next to the dispensing area.
CN: I've also heard about temporary protection deposits on watch cases, what is it exactly?
SEB: This is the contactless application of a protective removable coating on watch cases by mean of a simultaneous 5-axis robot. The Proof Of Concept has been completed and we are currently finalizing the software and the human-machine interface (HMI) to optimize the end-user ease of use.
The goal of this project is to protect components against micro scratches by applying by jetting a liquid film to them. This film is then polymerised (dried/hardened) by UV exposure. This is an alternative solution to the traditional manual application of self-adhesive protection films.
Depending on the component production or shipment stage, different coatings can be used. Whether for protection during transport or against mechanical threats, e.g. during sandblasting or galvanic processes.
CN: Ciposa could collaborate in a project of protection masks manufacturing, I believe you are involved in this project?
SEB: Indeed, I was lucky to start working on this project during the pandemic. The idea is to test the resistance of a new coating to be applied on personal protection masks.
This treatment will extend the masks lifetime and perhaps make them washing-resistant.
I have built a small test machine; I am now waiting for the samples to make the first tests.
CN: What is your next holidays destination?
SEB: We are travelling around Switzerland in September, my little family will board our reliable 1967 VW bus. We want to discover our own country in better way rather than go to the other side of the world.
CN: Thank you Sebastian for your answers, one last question: "When you were 10 years old, you were sure that ...? »
SEB: That when you crossed the Channel Tunnel, you could see the fishes!