Robotic Projects

Research, Development and Transfer

FHWS conducts applied science and development in close cooperation with companies from the regional and supra-regional industry. This ensures the optimum practical relevance for students and enables a direct transfer of the project results into practice.

Our close, productive alliance with the medium-sized industry becomes visible in our current research projects:

Intralogistics in the Smart Factory:
RoboCup@Work

The RoboCup has proven itself for more than 20 years as an international competition to significantly develop expertise in public in the area of robotics and artificial intelligence. The goal of the @Work League is to solve robotics problems in the environment of Industry 4.0 and Smart Factories and demonstrate them in a test environment. This topic is very relevant for the regional and supra-regional economy and is therefore an important component of the FHWS research focus Digital Production.

 

Project contact:

Prof. Dr. Tobias Kaupp >

  • Supported by: Hans-Wilhelm Renkhoff foundation

The RoboCup has proven itself for more than 20 years as an international competition to significantly develop expertise in public in the area of robotics and artificial intelligence. The goal of the @Work League is to solve robotics problems in the environment of Industry 4.0 and Smart Factories and demonstrate them in a test environment. This topic is very relevant for the regional and supra-regional economy and is therefore an important component of the FHWS research focus Digital Production.

Robotics plays an important and multifaceted role in an intelligent factory. Industrial robots have been used for decades for activities that require high repeat accuracy and force, such as welding and moving heavy components. Over the past ten years a new automation paradigm has developed which requires close cooperation between workers and cobots, known under the term human-robot collaboration. This means assembly work that is performed collaboratively by humans and robots, which has to run smoothly and safely and therefore requires a high degree of robot intelligence. The cobot has to understand the intention of the human and react rapidly and flexibly to any changes. How those objectives are reached is the subject of numerous research projects.

 

In addition to production, handling, and assembly work, robots also take over more and more intralogistics tasks in modern factories. Components and tools have to be transported in a timely manner between different work stations. To this purpose automated guided vehicles (AGVs) have to navigate safely in highly dynamic surroundings, identify objects in the surroundings and, if necessary, also pick them up. In addition, the logistic flows have to be efficiently planned and optimized, intertwined with the sequences at the processing stations to ensure a productive production chain.

The RoboCup@Work League was founded in 2013 to enable the scientific investigation of these diverse and in part complex research questions. This international competition is about developing robots that can perform transport and handling tasks autonomously in an abstracted industry environment.

The popular RoboCup competition which nowadays has five main leagues has established itself since 1997 as a platform to advance the state-of-the-art in robotics and artificial intelligence at higher education institutions and make them accessible to a wider public.

The goal of the project is to establish a RoboCup@Work team at FHWS, which addresses multiple strategic objectives at our University in the areas of research, teaching and public relations and promotes cooperation with industry.

Interactive, collaborative assembly of complex components (InKoMo)

Because of the lack of cost effectiveness, complex or individualized components with a small batch size often have a low degree of automation. Solutions to increase efficiency can be intelligent assembly sites. Within the “lnKoMo” project, AR applications and collaborative robots (cobots) are examined for possible usages in assisted, intelligent workplaces. The objective is to develop a tried-and-tested generally valid procedure for establishing intelligent, manual assembly processes on the basis of use cases.

 

Project contact:
Markus Wilhelm >

  • Duration: 01 February 2020 – 31 May 2021
  • Funded by: Bayerische Forschungsstiftung (Bavarian Research Foundation) – AZ-1401-19

Because of the lack of cost effectiveness, complex or individualized components with a small batch size often have a low degree of automation. Solutions to increase efficiency can be intelligent assembly sites. Within the “lnKoMo” project, AR applications and collaborative robots (cobots) are examined for possible usages in assisted, intelligent workplaces. The objective is to develop a tried-and-tested generally valid procedure for establishing intelligent, manual assembly processes on the basis of use cases.

There is a clear trend in industrial production from mass production to individualized mass fabrication. This means the products to be produced are manufactured in personalized variants in small batch sizes as desired by the consumer. In such cases a high level of automation is rarely economical so that assembly is often carried out manually. To satisfy the increasing competitive pressure it is necessary to exploit productivity potentials in manufacturing complex components to the full extent. Human robot collaboration in particular shows potential to increase the degree of automation. An additional extension of the assembly with technologies such as AR applications creates new jobs.

 

The aim of the project is to exploit the reserves in productivity by means of assisted production workplaces and through collaboration between human and robot. Feasibility studies for the assembly of complex components are performed within the project by using AR applications and collaborative robots. The findings will be integrated into a sector-independent guideline containing general recommendations for the development and integration of intelligent assembly areas.