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Innovations in Robotic Motion Planning and Motion Control

PostedFriday, August 12,2016 at 12:11 PM

Innovations in Robotic Motion Planning and Motion Control

I found an article on Duke University’s website about some technology that has excellent applications to automation and discrete manufacturing. In the article, “Robotic Motion Planning in Real-Time” and accompanying YouTube Video, the author’s research revealed some challenges with traditional robotic movements. 

Professor George Konidaris of Duke’s electrical engineering and computer science department implies that traditional robotic manufacturing processes are much easier to plan and program:

 “When you think about a car assembly line, the entire environment is carefully controlled so that the robots can blindly repeat the same movements over and over again…But if your robot is using motion planning in real time and a part is in a different place, or there's some unexpected clutter, or a human walks by, it'll do the right thing."

In Duke’s research, the robotic vision systems scan the area and process a movement plan that will avoid any collisions in real-time, thereby allowing for variances in placement and human movement, and increasing the safety of automated manufacturing.

Many Control System Integrators Association’s (CSIA) members are experienced in robotics, vision motion control and motion planning. Concept Systems, Inc. is a CSIA Certified company based in Albany, Oregon and is experienced in robotics, vision systems and collision avoidance.

I witnessed a demonstration of the company at Rockwell’s Automation Fair in November. Concept Systems’ demonstration of motion planning and collision avoidance included a robotic arm which first scanned a part to be painted and its placement on a conveyor belt. The placement on the conveyor belt was the variable, so the system had to plan its movements prior to the spray-painting operation. 

I encourage our readers to comment below (login first) on their own experiences and share project profiles or case studies on robotics systems, collision avoidance, innovations in motion control and motion planning. What challenges, successes, and innovations have you witnessed in this area? I look forward to your comments. 

If you have a question, contact our control system integrators and suppliers via their profiles on this website. Ask a question on our industrial automation community; they will respond.

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Tony Veroeven is the Industrial Automation Exchange Community Manager at CSIA, the Control System Integrators Association.

Photo credit: Duke University