Now It Makes Sense to Equip Robots With Eyes

Rasmus  Hasle

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Now It Makes Sense to Equip Robots With Eyes

Many Danish companies have challenges with many product variations that require a high degree of production flexibility. The solution may be robots with advanced vision technologies which can be quickly adjusted to recognize many new items. The Danish Technological Institute DTI has just developed a new type of robot solution with eyes and has tested this in a robot cell.

- The novelty of this robotic cell is that we focus on tight integration between the advanced vision and existing standard components such as the flexible shaker feeder we use. On top of these we have placed an instruction module which makes it easy to tell the system that an item is new, and you can easily instruct it how to detect and subsequently handle the item, says project manager and robotics expert Rasmus Hasle Andersen from DTI.

This robot solution has been created in the project LIAA - Lean Intelligent Assembly Automation - which is an EU-funded transnational research project aiming to develop a framework that allows humans to work in close cooperation with their flexible robot colleagues.

- This technology can be used in many different operating scenarios where we have full manual production today, including where there is a high degree of variation in production. As soon as there is a demand for flexibility, automation opportunities have traditionally been limited, but by making the training of new items easy, then suddenly we can use our technology in flexible manufacturing, explains Rasmus.

It should be easy and worthwhile to use robots in production
DTI is constantly working to develop new methods and new technologies and to integrate existing technologies into new innovative robotic solutions.

- With this robot solution, we show how we can easily integrate new technologies into an existing platform. DTI has spent a long time developing our Robot coworker platform that makes it easy to integrate existing technology to solve new and complex processes, explains Rasmus Hasle Andersen.

Because of increasingly opportunities for using the same robot to produce several different products and at the same time it is becoming possible for the human employees to manage and work closely with the robot, it pays to invest in a robot with vision technology. Now it makes sense for Danish companies to invest in a combine vision and robot package, because vision now also has the same flexibility as robots.

DTI is part of the research project LIAA, which aims to create a framework that makes it possible for people to work in close cooperation with robots. This kind of collaborative robotics can help European manufacturing industry to retain jobs. The consortium behind the LIAA consists of both knowledge institutes, technology developers and end users. Read more here (In Danish).