The Challenges of Robotic Design


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Join an expert panel put together by the Design World editorial team to examine the latest developments and challenges in the ever-changing field of robotics. We’ll learn about Clearpath Robotics’ unmanned vehicles, used for research and development, and what design challenges they faced in developing their products. Panelists will discuss what some of the best practices are for engineers involved in the design of robotics. We’ll also talk about safety issues in robotics and why ease of use of industrial robots is becoming more important. And we’ll examine what’s driving robotics technology today, as well as where the field is going in the coming years.

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  • ~300 clients, 30 countries5 kg – 1000 kgMultiple partners
  • Robotics DesignAutonomous SystemsFrom one-off prototypes to medium-scale production
  • Within 2% of traditional survey methods, no humans necessary on the water, no boat access requiredConducting surveys for external clients as of this year
  • Multidisciplinary: Even small projects involve a wide range of skills, team becomes less flexibleTest and validation: Systems have a hybrid of industrial requirements (safety, etc), while requiring outdoor tests (sometimes in difficult terrain/water)Rapid hardware iteration: We’re a startup company, time to market is key. Lead times and physical realities impede the processReliability vs. feature sets: Autonomous software is maturing rapidly, there’s a tradeoff here
  • Open-source software: ROS. Logging and viz tools are done, simulation is done, general best practices and standards laid outTest plans: Test intelligently as required, not all or nothingUser focused design: Most people don’t work with robots, keep this in mind.Self-testing: Build the robots to test themselves, use software engineering testing practices on the hardware when you can. If your problem needs a robot, you may as well take advantage of some of the features that come for free.Acceptance: Build for complexity, don’t deploy complexity to the market. The system should always be easy to use, as you understand your users better you can figure out how to add new features without additional cognitive load.
  • We’ve become much more realistic on what autonomous systems can and can’t do2 Years:Working side by side with humansDeploy smarter, focused tools, not general solutionsAutonomy adoption: Market will accept technology, but there’s upfront hardware investment
  • 5 Years:“Autonomy Ready” systems in wide deployment (interfaces, hardware, computation, sensors)Vehicles, phones, buildingsAutonomy readiness: Allows direct focus on cost/benefit of autonomy as its own feature, no hardware work necessary
  • 10 Years:Safety systems to decrease in cost by orders of magnitudeRegulatory and legal frameworks to be in place to allow for consumer useAutonomy acceptance: Humans can be completely removed from responsibility for completion of end-to-end complex tasks which require side-by-side interaction
  • The Challenges of Robotic Design

    1. 1. The Challenges of Robotic Design
    2. 2. Before We Start  This webinar will be available afterwards at & email  Q&A at the end of the presentation  Hashtag for this webinar: #DWwebinar
    3. 3. Thank You To Our Sponsors
    4. 4. Moderator Paul Heney Design World Presenters Nick J. Hunt Erik Nieves Ryan Gariepy ABB Yaskawa ClearPath Robotics
    5. 5. Nicholas Hunt Safety and Ease of Use in Robotics
    6. 6. What is a “safe” robot system? o o o o All hazards identified using qualified process (e.g. RIA risk assessment) Measures implemented by OEMs and system design engineers Procedures documented and available Workers trained Safety is now ensured Isaac would be proud . . . .
    7. 7. Collaboration – a game changer o A rising trend in the design of automation o The modernization of robot safety paradigm • Stop circuit philosophy had to change o Old technology “Hold” circuit eliminated o Dry contact E-Stops allowed over safety bus • New philosophy of safe motion monitoring o Mechanical stops replaced by software o Humans handing part to “live” robot o Open factory floor design • Inherently safe robots intensify collaboration with humans o New assumption: Robot to human mishap will occur o Low momentum multi-arm robots
    8. 8. Elements of a safe robot system o Safety interlocked fixed guarding o Physical stops or certified alternative o E-Stops and Dual-channel stops o Palm buttons, Gate boxes, Safety mats o Robot servo lock-out box o Scanners, Light fences, volumetric sensing, o (Safety) PLC
    9. 9. Don’t force robot operators to take matters into their own hands . . . .
    10. 10. Ease of use o o o o o o Arguably, second only to safety Can be viewed as enabler to safer operation Consistent and intuitive operation Effectively increases worker skill level Emphasis on automatic operation Poka Yokes TM ABB Robot Application Builder Common Elements o o o o GUI based HMI and Configuration Wizards Offline cell simulation with direct upload to robot Dynamic exception handling and recovery Context sensitive online Help TM ABB RobotStudio
    11. 11. Philosophy of minimum exposure o Be vigilant in hazard analysis, elimination and control o Design-in ease of use as an enabler to safe operation o Employ Poka Yoke methods wherever possible o Seek to eliminate ambiguous fault annunciation o Use dynamic exception handling for intelligent fault recovery o Allow for rejects in cell layout and application design
    12. 12. Robotics Development Trends Robotics | Motion | Drives
    13. 13. Robotics Evolution 2013 – Robots 20?? – Production Partners ROI model requires medium to large lot sizes ROI achieved even with small lots Repeatable tasks, few program changes One-off tasks as standard Programming from “robot expert” or process engineer Programming by shop floor operator using intuitive direct-teaching methods. Automatically generated programs are also prevalent. Perception limited to simple vision Perception in various forms; vision, force/torque, tactile, Robust sensor fusion Robot does not share space or interact with people Space is shared (no fences) and interaction is frequent (parts loading & Intelligent Assist Device) Fixed installation, or positioners Robots freely deployable to needed work zone.
    14. 14. Robotics Evolution 20?? – Production Partners ROI achieved even with small lots One-off tasks as standard Programming by shop floor operator using intuitive direct-teaching methods. Automatically generated programs are also prevalent. Perception in various forms; vision, force/torque, tactile, Robust sensor fusion Space is shared (no fences) and interaction is frequent (parts loading & Intelligent Assist Device) Robots freely deployable to needed work zone.  Perception  Mobility  Ease of Use
    15. 15. Perception - Vision 2D Vision mature technology widely applied in robotics 3D Vision on the innovation curve several competing technologies many small players “the bin picking problem”
    16. 16. Perception - Kinect Low cost 3D leverage point cloud generation of Kinect Vision as teaching tool using skeleton tracking as input device
    17. 17. Perception - Ease of Use Courtesy of Industrial Perception, Inc.
    18. 18. Perception – Force/Torque/Tactile Sensing Courtesy of Inelta GmbH Courtesy of DLR Courtesy of Syntouch LLC Fusion of sensor modalities is crucial to effective perception
    19. 19. Dexterity and Force Control With Non-Rigid Materials
    20. 20. Grasping – from dedicated to flexible Dedicated mature technology limited to families of parts Flexible Courtesy of Schunk emerging tech not cost effective Courtesy of Shadow Hand
    21. 21. Grasping – from dedicated to flexible  Robots are valuable only in so far as the end effector is successful.  “Solve the gripper problem and you solve the robot problem.” – Del Tesar, UTexas  “It’s the gripper, stupid.” – Bill Clinton (paraphrase) Courtesy of Robotiq
    22. 22. Kitting – dexterity and grasping
    23. 23. Open Software – Ease of Use INDUSTRIES... INDUSTRIES... Automotive, agriculture, construction and heavy machinery Consumer products, medical, education and advanced robotics APPLICATIONS... APPLICATIONS... Arc welding, spot welding and painting Assembly, material handling, test and measurement, and inspection
    24. 24. Open Software – Ease of Use INDUSTRIES... INDUSTRIES... Research, education, defense and advanced robotics Food, beverage and consumer products APPLICATIONS... APPLICATIONS... Visual servoing robots. Pick and place in unstructured environments. Mobility Packaging, kitting, case, packing and palletizing
    25. 25. ROS for Deburring
    26. 26. Summary  There are societal and market drivers moving the robotics industry forward  The technologies required to meet these challenges are developing rapidly, due in large part to the ubiquity of computing power and consumer electronics.  Perception, Mobility, Grasping, and Ease of Use will ensure that robotics will meet the promise of easing the burden of labor.  Questions/comments? 
    27. 27. Ryan Gariepy, CTO
    28. 28. Research Products
    29. 29. Industrial Services
    30. 30. Unmanned Survey
    31. 31. Design Challenges • • • • Multidisciplinary engineering Test and validation Hardware & rapid iteration Reliability vs. features
    32. 32. Best Practices • • • • • Open-source software Upfront risk analysis, test plans User-focused design Self-testing and diagnosis Get simple robots accepted first
    33. 33. Future of Autonomy Rethink Robotics Baxter Aeryon Labs SkyRanger
    34. 34. Future of Autonomy NASA Ames PhoneSat John Deere 6R Series nest Thermostat
    35. 35. Future of Autonomy University of Oxford RobotCar SwRI/ROS-Industrial Zookal
    36. 36. Questions? Design World Paul Heney Phone: 440.234.4531 Twitter: @DW_Editor ClearPath Robotics Ryan Gariepy ABB Nick J. Hunt Yaskawa Erik Nieves
    37. 37. Thank You  This webinar will be available at & email  Tweet with hashtag #DWwebinar  Connect with  Discuss this on