The SMErobotics Consortium has produced a Project Video to explain its vision & mission, its main research and development topics as well as its four main demonstrators. Each of the four demonstrators is displayed in a demonstrator video explaining the workflow of a robotic system in a real-world SME-environment.
The following chapter by chapter description of the Demonstrator D2 video showcases the workflow of "Human-robot cooperation in wooden house production".
Link to video: 00:00
[Overview over the work piece and the working environment of the robot]
"The production of ready-to-assemble structures for wooden houses involves the handling of large, heavy components, small lot sizes and high-required standards of accuracy."
"SMErobotics is intended to make automated wood-working more cost-effective and productive for typical small and medium sized companies."
Link to video: 00:32
[CAD data of a house construction is shown on a computer screen. The worker selects one wall from the CAD-model. Referring data is loaded and process planning starts.]
"A wood-working robot must be easy to program for the non-expert user. Using CAD data from the engineering of the wooden structure, the robot is able to generate its own work plan."
Link to video: 00:47
[Scan of the shop floor to capture the environment and objects within the robots work path. The perspective of the 3D-robot camera shows the work area with the work piece, wooden panels, tools as well as unexpected objects.]
"To cope with the uncertainties of the shop floor, a suitable robot must be able to sense its environment – and use that information to calibrate and adjust itself automatically. Sensor-based object recognition enables the robot to monitor its workspace and to detect any unexpected objects."
Link to video: 01:15
[A warning message about an unexpected object in the work path appears on the workers screen. To solve this problem, the worker needs to check on the work piece and remove the object manually.]
"After the workspace has been cleared of obstacles, the robot can proceed with its work."
[CAD data of the wooden construction is loaded into a virtual set-up of the robot and its working environment. The worker can preview the tool-status of the robot and receives a suggestion for tooling.]
"For program generation, the worker specifies the tasks to be executed. The robot then selects the required tools and work pieces."
[After the worker watched the process preview on his screen he starts the robot to execute the task.]
"A sequence planner in the robot command software calculates the paths to the appropriate tools, the paths for picking and placing the panels and the paths for nailing or milling, all of this without any action by the operator."
Link to video: 01:53
[First the robot selects the gripper tool. A graphical overlay indicates the work path and the process steps which will be executed by the robot. Accrodingly, the robot picks a panel and places it onto the wooden frame of the wall construction.]
"This robotic system already includes several capabilities, such as:
[To attach the panels on the wooden frame, the parts become nailed together. Therefore the gripper is also equipped with a rattle path nailing tool.]
"The robotic system is also capable of integrating new tasks and skills due to new workpieces or the implementation of new tools."
"Both the robot and the human worker use their knowledge and experience to cope with uncertainties in complex processes and to improve the flexibility of the system."
Link to video: 02:44
[The robot returns to its tool-changing station and automatically picks the tool needed for the next task.]
"Equipped with a multi-functional tool exchange system, the robot is able to pick the correct tools for a certain task in the workflow. This means that various tasks requiring different tools can be executed as part of the same process. This opens up a wide range of possibilities for the combination of gripping, sawing, milling, drilling and nailing operations."
Link to video: 03:13
[While executing the sawing task, an problem occurs and the robot stops. The worker receives a warning message on his computer screen already providing possible solutions. After checking on the workpiece and the sawing tool the worker adjusts the sawing parameters manually and the robot continues with its task execution.]
"The robot helps to solve problems by pinpointing the error and providing possible solutions. Error handling is important not only for safeguarding the tools or further processing a task, but also for memorising the solution in order to respond automatically if the error occurs again at a later point in time."
[First the worker checks on the workpiece and the then he adjusts the sawing parameters of the sawing tool manually. Afterwards, the robot continues with its task execution.]
"After inspecting the workpiece and the tool path, the operator selects an appropriate stored solution or directly changes the process parameters. Integrated machine learning techniques add the operator's response to the system's knowledge base for later automatic reuse as a learned solution."
Link to video: 03:58
Original statement (French):
Worker: "Ce que j’aime avec le robot, c’est sa forte interaction. Par exemple : ses messages d’erreurs et d’avertissement pertinent, ses suggestions efficaces, nous permettent de créer de nouvelles tâches de manière plus facile, plus pertinentes, plus efficaces, plus précis, tout en me garantissant un produit finale de qualité."
Worker: "What I like about the robot is how well it interacts. For example, its error and warning messages and its useful suggestions allow me to create new tasks more easily, more appropriately, more reliably and more accurately while at the same time guaranteeing a high-quality end product."
Link to video: 04:18
[Robot executes tasks e.g. sawing, nailing, picking &placing, on its own, while the worker has time for a coffee break.]
"This highly flexible machining cell comprises a high-quality six-axis gantry robot, intelligent software and an intuitive interface for human-robot interaction."
"The requirements of SMEs are met by the robot’s flexibility for executing different tasks and its variety of available tools."
"The use of robots in the wood-working industry offers various advantages: a robot is highly accurate, it doesn’t get tired and it doesn’t need a coffee break."
Link to video: 04:56
[SMErobotics logo animation including all the logos of the consortium partners]
"Europe’s leading robot manufacturers and research institutes have teamed up with the European Robotics Initiative for Strengthening the Competitiveness of SMEs in Manufacturing - To make the vision of cognitive robotics in manufacturing a reality."