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Integrated Sensor-Based Robot System

Objective

The objective of this project was to develop advanced tactile and vision sensor systems, a sensorised gripper system and a sensor-integrating robot controller, and to integrate these into a flexible workpiece handling system capable of dealing with randomly oriented parts in an unstructured environment. The integration of such a system with CAD was also investigated.
The objective of this project was to develop advanced tactile and vision sensor systems, a sensorised gripper system and a sensor integrating robot controller, and to integrate these into a flexible workpiece handling system capable of dealing with randomly oriented parts in an unstructured environment. The integration of such a system with computer aided design (CAD) was also investigated.

A number of parallel subsystem developments provided prototype hardware and software subsystems (tactile sensors, gripper, vision systems, and robot controller). These were then incorporated into a main test bed configuration. The vision system provided initial guidance to locate touching and nontouching parts. The tactile system incorporated in the gripper provided correction data. Orientation of the workpiece was facilitated by a rotation capability built into the gripper fingers. Integration was achieved between all the major subsystems enabling the successful demonstration of a sensor based robot workpiece handling system. The sensor integration developed by the project for the handling of parts in an unstructured environment should lead to the development of exploitable products with wide industrial application.
A number of parallel subsystem developments provided prototype hardware and software subsystems (tactile sensors, gripper, vision system, and robot controller). These were then incorporated into a main test-bed configuration. The vision system provided initial guidance to locate touching and non-touching parts. The tactile system incorporated in the gripper provided correction data. Orientation of the workpiece was facilitated by a rotation capability built into the gripper fingers. Integration was achieved between all the major subsystems enabling the successful demonstration of a sensor-based robot workpiece-handling system.
Exploitation
The sensor integration developed by the project for the handling of parts in an unstructured environment should lead to the development of exploitable products with wide industrial application.
Work on vision and on the controller has already led to successful commercial exploitation by Joyce Loebl (Vickers) and Bosch. A dedicated manufacturing facility established by MARI for a product range based on the tactile sensor development is in commercial production. IPA has exploited the results through seminars for leading industrial companies and contracts for material flow planning.

Coordinator

MARI Applied Technologies Ltd
Address
Boldon Business Park Witney Way
NE35 9PE Boldon
United Kingdom

Participants (6)

FRAUNHOFER-GESELLSCHAFT ZUR FOERDERUNG DER ANGEWANDTEN FORSCHUNG E.V.
Germany
Address
Nobelstrasse 12
70569 Stuttgart
Joyce Loebl Ltd
United Kingdom
Address
Dukesway Team Valley Trading Estate
NE11 0PZ Gateshead
Robert Bosch GmbH
Germany
Address
Berliner Straße 25
64711 Erbach
UNIV NOVA DE LISBOA
Portugal
Address
Quinta Da Torre
2825 Caparica
UNIV OF ATHENS
Greece
Address
Heroon Politechniou
15773 Athinai
UNIVERSITY OF NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE
United Kingdom
Address

NE1 7RU Newcastle Upon Tyne