Advancements in Robotics Automation

Collaborative Robots | Sensor Systems | Offline Programming

Advancements in Robotics Automation2018-09-19T10:44:45+00:00

Collaborative Robots (cobots)

A new era in automation has begun. Smart, flexibile, collaborative robots (cobots) will change the face of productivity and manufacturing in Australia. Able to work alongside humans without the need for safety guarding (subject to risk assessment), cobots open vast new applications for robot technology. They are easily integrated into existing production environments, and the tasks they are suited for are wide-ranging.

Traditionally, industrial robots have been developed and intended mainly for mass production involving long product life cycles. However, in fields where new models are introduced frequently at intervals of a few months, automation is considered difficult despite demand for robotisation, in terms of both preparation period and cost-effectiveness.

However, RTA robotics supplier Kawasaki has developed a brand-new robot that is applicable to such fields, the innovative, dual-arm ‘duAro’ SCARA robot. The new “duAro” robot’s area of motion is the same as that of a person, with motions similar to those of human arms and independent movements for each arm, made possible because of its dual-arm configuration.

This collaborative robot has two arms that reach horizontally from the body and that move together as a pair. This configuration can easily perform operations similar to those of a person using both arms within a one-person space. Equipped with a collision detection function and a safety function that slows down its motion when near a person, the robot can be reliably operated in tandem with the operations of workers adjacent to the machine.

They are setup with a working range to help to coexist with people in perfect harmony.

The duAro dual-arm robot, with its two coaxial arm configuration that is controlled by a single controller makes it possible to perform coordinated movement. The wheeled base on which the arms are placed accommodates the controller and enables the user to move the robotto any location.desired.

Direct teaching by holding the robot’s arms allows the user to easily teach the robot the movements required of them.

Cobot - Colaborative Robot

Sensor Systems

Dynamic process control technologies, which include sophisticated sensor systems, such as laser vision, have wholly transformed the ways in which robotics can be integrated into operations.

Dynamic process control allows for increased robotics automation applications due to the fact that it enables parameter adjustments to be made on the go.

Machine vision systems are used to perform complex visual inspections for robotic applications. They help deliver precise, multi-dimensional feedback on a target part in the language robotics can recognise and use.

Vision systems also provide information on what action robotic components should take to interact with the target object.

Vision sensors produce a way for machines to “see.” Whereas traditional sensors analyse and interpret data from a single point, unlike vision sensors that input an entire image. These sensors consist of a camera that snaps a picture of the part. The image is then transferred to memory, processed, analysed and compared against predetermined parameters.

When the vision sensor evaluates the features of the part as compared to user-defined tolerances for each parameter, it determines whether the part passes or fails the inspection and outputs the results for the function of robot control.

The controller and camera constitute the hardware elements of a vision system. The software elements include the control system, graphical user interface and image algorithms.

A vision system’s set of features includes its vision tools and method of communicating data. Robot applications that can benefit from a machine vision system are arranged into several classes.

Used in a variety of applications, Vision Guided or Vision Assisted robotics can further enhance the flexibility and capability of any given process.

RTA specialises in the advancement of your robotic automation solution with the option of adapting your application to include the use of Vision Guided or Vision Assisted robotics.

RTA and laser vision and sensing systems provider Servo Robot have been working together and achieved some great results in robot vision, using real time online tracking and scanning solving customer production issues with part alignment, product movement, positional adjustment, we are adding eye’s to Robots!

SERVO-ROBOT manufactures laser vision systems for seam tracking, seam finding, weld inspection as well as material handling processes.

Automation of joining processes, such as laser welding and arc welding, gluing, sealing, measurement etc., benefit from SERVO-ROBOT products. Process tools that provide real-time joint tracking, adaptive control and visual inspection system are integrated with SERVO-ROBOT advanced 3-D laser vision techniques and advanced sensing devices.

Likewise, material handling and pick-and-place applications benefit from the unique hybrid sensor technology that can dramatically speed up and simplify applications traditionally done with 2-D sensors. SERVO-ROBOT products are applied in various industrial sectors to ensure process quality and efficiency.

Explore the world of possibilities that vision guided robotics creates. Talk to us if your business involves automation of processes, such as laser welding and arc welding, gluing, sealing and measurement, material handling, and pick-and-place applications.

Offline Programming Software Technology

Physical attributes of robots have advanced at a far higher rate than programming software. Today, there is a range of robots for all tasks, from very small robots that you can pick up with one hand to massive robots with heavy payloads that are perfect for force control for grinding and cutting.

However, the need for excessive programming, combined with the need to devote significant time and resources to learning how to use robotics, has hindered widespread uptake and investment.

Programming robotic software requires skill and knowledge, which is why teaching operation programs for industrial robots is such an integral part of the integration process. The teaching has to cover everything, from programming the robot for movement, to using the controller for sequential memorisation of the position of the robot. To complete the program, repeat verification is performed by playing back the program on the robot

and making the necessary adjustments.

Offline programming offers a way around the previously laborious task. CAD models of both the robotic system and the environment allow for the programs to be planned, developed and tested through simulation before they are uploaded into the robot for real-world application.

This reduces the need for programming within the workshop and slashes the time and resources businessowners and operators need to dedicate to robot teaching, both of which have a significant bearing on production costs.

Kawasaki has even developed automatic robot teaching software—KCONG—which creates robotic operation programs in a short amount of time while eliminating the need for conventional teaching methods. Using 3D CAD data of work-pieces, verification and adjustments are made simple through the software’s simulation capabilities. This means that the use of fully automated systems is possible for small production runs, immediately improving efficiency and productivity. The beauty of KCONG is that it allows engineers with no expertise in robotics to easily program and use robot systems, and promote the use of robotics from a non-specialist standpoint.

To learn more about one of RTA’s numerous applications of this technology see Thales Bushmaster Case Study.

Read more about Kawasaki’s offline programming software in the Kawasaki KCONG Brochure.