Augsburg, Germany
Augsburg, Germany

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Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2011.2.1 | Award Amount: 18.21M | Year: 2012

Over two-thirds of European workers in manufacturing are employed in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Their primary means of competition is to respond rapidly to changing production needs and to keep product quality at a very high level. While robots are able to carry out repetitive tasks to a high standard, they do not meet the demands of SMEs for high flexibility. Todays robots know only their nominal task, which limits their ability to deal with sudden changes in the manufacturing process.For the operation of robots in an SME environment, which is typically less structured and involves more uncertainties, the currently available solutions result in overly complex system integration. Instead, cognitive abilities should be included in the equipment and cognition should take place in both the robot and the human, such that the workers knowledge can be fully utilised and productivity demands can be met. Additionally, the concepts and symbols used in dialogues need to have a common grounding in order to guarantee ease of use.Therefore, we propose the SMErobotics work system, which covers all phases of the robot life-cycle and in which humans and robots can together deal with SME manufacturing uncertainties and are symbiotically able to learn from each other and to learn from the past handling of uncertainties. The SMErobotics vision is to deploy such robots on SME shop floors, with the benefit of long-term improvements in productivity.\nThe SMErobotics initiative pays careful attention to SME-related issues and scientific challenges, as is reflected by its strong industrial involvement supported by leading researchers and building on successful collaboration between industry and academia as well as on demonstration-driven research from the SMErobot project. Additional partners will be included in order to widen the initiatives impact by transferring project results to European pilot applications of SME-compatible cognitive robot systems.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA | Phase: ICT-2013.2.2 | Award Amount: 3.22M | Year: 2013

The European robotics community has grown significantly over the last few years. At the same time public funding enabled the community to become more organised on both the research (EURON) and the industrial (EUROP) side and to develop the currently valid Strategic Research Agenda (SRA).Very recently EURON and EUROP decided to combine their portfolio of activities and member base within a new non-profit organisation, euRobotics AISBL, which intends to engage in a contractual Public-Private Partnership (PPP) with the European Commission (EC). The main players behind this success story have joined in this project to address the most important challenges for the coming three to five years:\n- Professional coordination of technology roadmapping and implementation of innovation activities\n- Fostering collaboration among all stakeholders of European robotics\n- Promoting European robotics\nThis projects ambition is to create sustainable solutions for these challenges, building on the successful instruments the robotics community has already experimented with. These instruments have not yet fully achieved the required goals, partly because of a lack of dedicated, professional support and partly because the challenges have changed as a consequence of the higher ambitions and the larger set of stakeholders to be involved. This will change with the recent founding of euRobotics AISBL and the commitment of both industrial and academic stakeholders to more closely and formally cooperate, but especially through the PPP with the EC. The following activities are planned engaging the whole community:\n- Robotics roadmap coordination\n- Robotics PPP preparation and ramp-up\n- Facilitating robotics innovation\n- Robotics networking\n- Dissemination and outreach\nThese core activities will defragment the community and construct a European robotics industry with sufficient identity and presence to create world leadership in terms of both strategic capability and economic impact.


Patent
KUKA Laboratories GmbH | Date: 2015-02-11

A method for fixing the position at least one axis of a manipulator, in particular of a robot, includes closuring a mechanical brake of the axis, deactivating an actuator of the axis with a motion controller, monitoring the mechanical brake, and activating the actuator with the motion controller if a monitoring system identifies a fault condition of the mechanical brake.


Patent
KUKA Laboratories GmbH | Date: 2014-07-23

A method for monitoring a payload-handling robot assembly having at least one robot includes identifying a robot-handled payload arrangement on the basis of a current position of the robot assembly relative to a specified change position of the robot assembly. In another aspect, a robot assembly includes at least one robot, a monitoring apparatus configured to determine a current position of the robot assembly and to identify a robot-handled payload arrangement on the basis of the current position of the robot assembly relative to a specified change position of the robot assembly, and a payload receptacle for receiving a plurality of different payloads. The robot is configured for handling the plurality of payloads in an alternating manner.


Patent
KUKA Laboratories GmbH | Date: 2014-07-23

A method for decelerating a robot axis arrangement having at least one output link includes steps of applying a braking force on the output link with a brake and, in so doing, controlling a driving force of a drive that acts on the output link, and/or controlling the braking force on the basis of a dynamic variable of the output link, wherein the dynamic variable is a function of the braking force.


Patent
KUKA Laboratories GmbH | Date: 2015-02-06

A method for programming an industrial robot includes moving a manipulator arm of the industrial robot manually (hand guided) into at least one pose in which at least one control variable, which is to be entered in a robot program, is recorded by a control device of the industrial robot and is saved as a parameter of an associated program instruction in the robot program. In another aspect, an industrial robot includes a robot control unit which is designed and/or configured to carry out such a method.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ICT-23-2014 | Award Amount: 5.40M | Year: 2015

Sleep! For hominids and most other mammals sleep means more than regeneration. Sleep positively affects working memory, which in turn improves higher-level cognitive functions such as decision making and reasoning. This is the inspiration of RobDREAM! What if robots could also improve their capabilities in their inactive phases by processing experiences made during the working day and by exploring or dreaming of possible future situations and how to solve them best? In RobDREAM we will improve industrial mobile manipulators perception, navigation and manipulation and grasping capabilities by automatic optimization of parameters, strategies and selection of tools within a portfolio of key algorithms for perception, navigation and manipulation and grasping, by means of learning and simulation, and through use case driven evaluation. As a result, mobile manipulation systems will adapt more quickly to new tasks, jobs, parts, areas of operation and various other constraints. From a scientific perspective the RobDREAM robots will feature increased adaptability, dependability, flexibility, configurability, decisional autonomy, as well as improved abilities in perception, interaction manipulation and motion. The technology readiness level (TRL) of the related key technologies will be increased by means of frequent and iterative real-world testing, validation and improvement phases from the very beginning of the project. From an economic perspective the Quality of Service and the Overall Equipment Efficiency will increase, while at the same time the Total Cost of Ownership for setup, programming and parameter tuning will decrease. These advantages will support the competitiveness of Europes manufacturing sector, in particular in SME-like settings with higher product variety and smaller lot-sizes. They also support the head start of technology providers adopting RobDREAMs technologies to conquer market shares in industrial and professional service robotics.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: FoF-ICT-2013.7.1 | Award Amount: 22.24M | Year: 2014

The European manufacturing industry needs competitive solutions to keep global leadership in products and services. Exploiting synergies across application experts, technology suppliers, system integrators and service providers will speed up the process of bringing innovative technologies from research labs to industrial end-users. As an enabler in this context, the EuRoC initiative proposes to launch three industry-relevant challenges: 1) Reconfigurable Interactive Manufacturing Cell, 2) Shop Floor Logistics and Manipulation, 3) Plant Servicing and Inspection. It aims at sharpening the focus of European manufacturing through a number of application experiments, while adopting an innovative approach which ensures comparative performance evaluation. Each challenge is launched via an open call and is structured in 3 stages. 45 Contestants are selected using a challenge in a simulation environment: the low barrier of entry allows new players to compete with established robotics teams. Matching up the best Contestants with industrial end users, 15 Challenger teams are admitted to the second stage, where the typical team is formed by research experts, technology suppliers, system integrators, plus end users. Teams are required to benchmark use cases on standard robotic platforms empowered by this consortium. After a mid-term evaluation with public competition, the teams advance to showcasing the use case in a realistic environment. After an open judging process, 6 Challenge Finalists are admitted to run pilot experiments in a real environment at end-user sites to determine the final EuRoC Winner. A number of challenge advisors and independent experts decide about access to the subsequent stages. A challenge-based approach with multiple stages of increasing complexity and financial support for competing teams will level the playing field for new contestants, attract new developers and new end users toward customisable robot applications, and provide sustainable solutions to carry out future challenges.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA | Phase: ICT-2011.2.1 | Award Amount: 2.02M | Year: 2013

Robot competitions have proved to be an effective instrument to foster scientific research and push the state of the art in a field. Teams participating in a competition must identify best practice solutions covering a wide range of functionalities and integrate them into practical systems. These systems have to work in the real world, outside of the usual laboratory conditions. The competition experience helps to transfer the applied methods and tools to successful and high-impact real-world applications. Other effects of robot competitions are that young students are attracted to science and engineering disciplines, and that the relevance of robotics research is demonstrated to citizens. However, some limitations can emerge as competitions mature: the effort required to enter the competition grows and may present a barrier for the participation of new teams; a gap between benchmarking complete systems in competitions and benchmarking subsystems in research may develop and limit the usefulness of the competition results to industry.\n\nThe goal of RoCKIn is to speed up the progress towards smarter robots through scientific competitions. Two challenges have been selected for the competitions due to their high relevance and impact on Europes societal and industrial needs: domestic service robots (RoCKIn@Home) and innovative robot applications in industry (RoCKIn@Work). Both challenges have been inspired by activities in the RoboCup community, but RoCKIn improves and extends them by introducing new and prevailing research topics, like natural interaction with humans or networking mobile robots with sensors in ambient environments, in addition to specifying concrete benchmark criteria for assessing progress.\n\nThe RoCKIn project\n\tdesigns open domain testbeds for competitions targeting the two challenges and usable by researchers worldwide,\n\tdevelops methods for benchmarking through competitions that allow to assess both particular subsystems as well as the integrated system,\n\torganizes two robot competition events, each of them based on the two challenges and testbeds,\n\torganizes camps open to student participants, so as to help new teams getting involved in the competitions, and\n\texecutes dissemination activities to target stakeholders in industry and academia, as well as the general public.


Patent
KUKA Laboratories GmbH | Date: 2014-01-09

A safety monitoring means for a robot assembly with at least one robot includes a configuration means for configuring a linking function arrangement with at least one first linking function including a fixed and predetermined number of monitoring functions of a monitoring function arrangement. The monitoring functions are logically linked to one another such that the first linking function has a reaction state whenever none of the monitoring functions indicates a not-violated state. The configuration means may further include at least one second linking function including a fixed and predetermined number of monitoring functions that are logically linked to one another such that the second linking function does not have a reaction state whenever all monitoring functions indicate a violated state.

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