Autonomous flying gripping sphere
Both gripping and flying have long been a topic for the Bionic Learning Network. In the FreeMotionHandling, Festo has for the first time combined both areas. The indoor flying object can manoeuvre autonomously in any direction, independently picking up and dropping off items where they are required.
Flying assistance system for handling in mid-air
The handling system consists of an ultra-light carbon ring with eight adaptive propellers. In the middle of the ring sits a rotatable helium ball with an integrated gripping element. As a result, both man and machine can interact with each other easily and safely, opening up entirely new possibilities for the workplace of the future. In this future, people could be supported by the spheres, using them as a flying assistance system – for example, when working at giddying heights or in hard-to-access areas.
Exact position sensing and precise object detection
No pilot is required to control the flying object. The sphere is coordinated externally by an indoor GPS, which has already been tried and tested on the eMotionSpheres and eMotionButterflies. In addition, the handling unit features two on-board cameras with which it monitors its surroundings, reacting to its environment even during the gripping process. Upon nearing the object to be gripped, the system takes over route planning, using the twin cameras for coordination.