Automated Spray System Case Study

Customer, Challenge & Risks

We were contacted by a leading global tier 1 automotive supplier based in the U.S. They are a vertically integrated manufacturing partner that molds, upholsters, and assembles components for finished seat assemblies that serve the automotive and aerospace industries worldwide. Our company contact was a corporate engineer that oversees capital projects for facilities within their foam division.
The proposed project was for one of their facilities located in the Southern United States that was investigating a way to implement automated spray systems into their molding process. This project was a piece to a larger initiative for three new foam lines. Many resources were being invested within the facility to support the new lines, which led the engineering team to investigate a system that sprayed a solution onto the foam parts after trimming, prior to upholstery and assembly. Our customer was seeking to automate due to struggles in finding willing and qualified labor, along with the need to produce a consistent part with even spray coverage. The existing process varied among all facilities, at this location they had been manually spraying, other facilities had implemented automated solutions but were not producing a part with consistent, even spray coverage.


The customer found us through an internet search for robotic integrators, which led them to our website, where they discovered our capabilities, along with our demonstrated industry experience and knowledge. After reviewing the process in detail and visiting a similar facility in production, our team was able to put a detailed proposal together. We came to a final concept and firm proposal through a series of quote revisions; we captured the entire scope of the project while staying within our customer’s budget.

From our expertise in paint, dispense, and spray applications – both automated and robotic, gave us a firm understanding on how to overcome all the customer’s obstacles. As a FANUC Authorized System Integrator, the customer first approached this project as robotic application since it proved successful in their European facilities. Due to the increased line speed in North American facilities, robots were not a feasible solution to align with their specific process.

The customer reached out and was put in contact with our sales team to begin reviewing their application and gather the necessary information to build an accurate quote. The customer provided a detailed RFQ including concept and specifications. Our team was able to create a simulation based on the customer information provided; determining multiple robots would be required to meet cycle time, which would greatly increase the footprint and budget of the project. The decision was made to pursue a non-robotic option that could effectively spray each part and accommodate the vast array of part styles at random. Due to a company-wide initiative to standardize controls across all facilities, we were requested to use Siemens controls, which our team was able to successfully implement. A customer run-off was included at the time of the order where the customer is invited into our facility to review a production style run, request any final changes, and sign-off on the systems before shipment. The facility where the system would be installed had sufficient resources to install and commission the booths and controls for production. The system was plug and play since the machine was production ready on our floor, then disassembled, and carefully packed for shipment. Our team provided a detailed list of assembly and startup instructions; in conjunction with training at the time of run-off to familiarize the engineers to properly train their team of operators that would be running the machines daily.

Outcomes of Success

This project proved to be successful for both Pioneer as well as the customer. We provided a robust and efficient solution that solved all the customer’s obstacles, all while fitting within their budget. The customer successfully installed and commissioned both systems in time to startup their new lines to meet new program demands. Our systems increased throughput and quality by accurately dosing and spraying each part. Due to the increase in demand and the commissioning of the third line, our customer had a need for the third system that was initially proposed. Since the first systems were in production for over a year, there were a handful of changes which the customer wanted to change or add to the third system to improve overall machine performance.

Paint, Dispense, & Spray

Mechanical Design and Engineering 

PLC & HMI Programming 

Fabrication and Machining

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