Extension brings vision to robotic arms

To help robotic arms pick items and provide consistent positioning, manufacturers can add fixtures, bowl feeders and other hardware to help pick up different objects and for quick changeover times. These add cost and complexity and OnRobot believes its Eyes 2.5D vision adds depth perception and parts recognition for all leading robotic arms, offering seamless integration, one-picture calibration, intuitive programming without the complexity of existing vision systems. Eyes can be flexibly mounted on the robot wrist or externally, making it suitable for almost any unstructured application that needs vision guidance, says OnRobot.

It is designed for customers who do not want to be tied to a fixed incoming position of a product they want to pick. Part feeders and fixtures can be complicated, bulky and expensive and, until now, vision systems have been out of reach.

Eyes needs to take a single image for calibration and part recognition, and has automatic focus to work at different distances within the same application.

It is suitable for sorting a variety of objects or for CNC machine tending with metal parts that are defined by outer shape. It can also be used for pick and place applications where orientation is important. Eyes also offers depth perception within its 2.5D vision.

“2.5D is rapidly emerging as the perfect technology for vision-guided applications,” said CEO, Enrico Krog Iversen. “Compared to 2D it adds not only length and width but also height information for the specific part, which is ideal when objects may vary in height or if objects must be stacked,” he added.

Eyes can be mounted on the robot wrist or externally. It integrates seamlessly with all leading collaborative and light industrial robot arms through OnRobot’s One System Solution, a unified mechanical and communications interface based on the company’s Quick Changer which is an integrated part of all OnRobot products.

The vision system directly interfaces with other OnRobot devices making it is very easy to use Eyes with any of OnRobot’s grippers. With a dual setup, using a dual Quick Changer, the gripper’s tool centre point (TCP) can be automatically configured by Eyes, eliminating any potential conflict between different software packages from different tool vendors.

The optimal mounting depends on the application. Some of the advantages of having Eyes mounted externally is not having to worry about cables running alongside the robot and the ability to optimise cycle time, as Eyes can take the picture and process this, while the robot is doing another operation.


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