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Bin picking application: Robot takes over machine loading

MANN+HUMMEL – SPEYER IN MOTION

2D BIN PICKING: ROBOT TAKES OVER AUTOMATED LOADING OF A SCREEN PRINTING MACHINE

CHALLENGE

At the Mann+Hummel plant in Speyer, Germany, the company was looking for a solution to automate the loading of a screen-printing machine with air/oil separators. A worker previously carried out this very monotonous and non-ergonomic task manually.

Now, a cobot from Universal Robots should be used picking two air/oil separators from a grid box and placing them on a timed conveyor belt, on which the filters are transported to the screen printing machine for printing.

Since the filters are provided partially sorted in several levels with intermediate storage, one challenge was the correct detection of the part position. Another requirement was that the detection jobs could easily be adapted to new variants of the filters.

APPLICATION

In order to keep the robot application flexible and to be able to switch back to manual loading if, for example, the robot has to be adapted to a new product, it was decided to use a cobot in combination with a light grid to ensure safety. A SensoPart vision sensor that is mounted above the feeding box and that is directly connected to the robot should handle the detection of the picking position.

The entire programming of the cobot, including the connection between vision sensor and cobot, was finally carried out using the software ArtiMinds Robot Programming Suite (RPS).

WHY ARTIMINDS?

“The successful implementation of our pilot plant in Speyer has proven that with suitable components and the right software, even complex robotic applications can be flexibly implemented by our own employees.”

SASCHA MUMMERT
Technology and Process Engineer at Mann+Hummel in Speyer

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SOLUTION

ArtiMinds RPS makes it possible to generate robot programs intuitive and simple by drag and drop of predefined blocks (“Templates”). The desired task sequence can be put together in a modular way and the subsequent parameterization of the templates is done either offline in the CAD environment or online with the real robot with an intuitive wizard system. This allows the user to focus completely on the actual process and its implementation, which offers much more flexibility, especially when doing first steps in the field of robotics and gaining initial experience.

By including the CAD model of the grid box in the 3D simulation environment, the cell layout could already be checked in regards to collisions and reachability of the cobot during cell planning. With this setup, collisions could automatically be avoided during robot programming. ArtiMinds RPS´ internal interface minimized the setup effort for the vision system and ensured a simple and standardized transfer of data to the robot.

The result: A transparent robot program that is autonomously executed by the robot without having written a single line of robot code. ArtiMinds software does not have to be present during execution since native UR Script code was generated.

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“Our goal was to proof the possibilities of current robotics technology and build up appropriate internal know-how.”

Sascha Mummert, Technology and Process Engineer at Mann+Hummel

Take Aways of the Bin Picking application:

  • ArtiMinds RPS simplifies the programming of sensor-based applications. In combination with sensor technology, even the program logic for cobot applications can quickly become very complex.
  • The boxes are available in different variants. It was therefore important that the detection jobs could be easily adapted.
  • External influences in production could not be completely ruled out, so robust detection had to be ensured.
  • The installed application was to serve as a basis for further systems and the program created should therefore easily transferable to a new hardware setup.
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