VIDEO: How App Developers are Simplifying Industrial Robotics
James Anderton posted on November 11, 2016 |
Can overrun costs in robotic automation cells be reduced with vision systems and force sensors?

If you’re a manufacturing engineer, you’ll know that a critical problem with automation is cost and complexity.

In the video above, we discuss how robotics developers are teaming up with software and hardware developers to eliminate these complexities, with the CEO of Robotiq, Samuel Bouchard.

“Robotics has always been something complex and costly, but that’s really changing,” said Bouchard. “To look at Universal Robots, for example, they have a developer program which operates like an app store, called Universal Robots +.”

On the UR+ website, users can find a great deal of hardware and software specifically for use with UR’s line of collaborative robots, to help with applications ranging from pick and place to inspection.

“The technology available on the site is all designed for plug-and-play to make setup and use easier for all automation engineers, from those who are technically savvy to those who are not experts in robotics.”

In the video, Bouchard demonstrates how a wrist-mounted camera, gripper and force sensor attached to a cobot greatly simplifies a pick-and-place application.

“How the overall concept would work for the automation engineer is that they would go to their supplier for the robot and components, and all the relevant software drivers could be moved from a USB stick to be programmed in a user-friendly interface,” Bouchard explained.

With accessories like those demonstrated, cost overruns in a machining cell due to fixturing can be eliminated.

“For picking, a lot of cost problems can be solved. In applications like welding, we won’t be able to completely remove fixturing,” Bouchard said, “But in robotic manipulation of parts, the process could be simplified to reduce some costs.”

For more information, watch the video above and visit Robotiq’s website and the Universal Robots + webpage.

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