Digitalisation has found its way into almost all areas of industry. Automated guided vehicles (AGVs) have taken on simple logistics tasks in recent years. Factories are becoming intelligent, machines will communicate with each other and artificial intelligence will open up new possibilities for process optimisation in the future. Individualised products place greater demands on flexible production, which is why batch size 1 is the goal to be achieved. This has an impact on the material flow and the logistics processes. Autonomous mobile robots (AMR) are increasingly used in addition to industrial robots. Increased requirements for individual logistics processes necessitate the further development of mobile robots.
Into Industry 4.0 with Robotino®
Our learning system to introduce students to mobile robotics is suitable for teaching the fundamentals of mechatronics and computer science, as well as for use in advanced applications in the fields of autonomous mobile robotic systems (AMR) and automated guided vehicles (AFTS/AGV). Thanks to its open interfaces, it is possible to quickly begin teaching the logistics concepts of tomorrow.
Everything at a glance
The chassis contains nine infrared distance sensors and numerous ready-made mounting options. In addition, an analogue inductive sensor and two optical sensors are included with which Robotino® can detect and track, for example, predefined marked distances.
Robotino® is supplied with an advanced image processing system that, with its stereo/RGBd camera unit, independently detects the environment and can navigate freely within it. These autonomous functions can be seamlessly integrated into sequence-based programs
The three drive modules of Robotino® are integrated in a sturdy stainless-steel chassis. With its omnidirectional drive, Robotino® moves forwards, backwards, sideways and turns on the spot. Three sturdy industrial DC motors with optical rotary encoders reliably permit speeds of up to 10 km/h.
Power is supplied via up to four 18-volt lithium-ion rechargeable batteries, each of which has a runtime of two-and-a-half hours. They can be replaced during operation thanks to ‘hot swap’. The system switches off in time if the charging level is too low.
Once removed, the rechargeable batteries can be charged in under an hour. This means that Robotino® can maintain its mobility throughout the entire experiment and does not need to be restarted.
Additional components can be connected to the robot controller via standard interfaces such as USB (4× USB 3, 2× USB 2) and Ethernet. The controller also provides analogue and digital inputs/outputs and relay outputs for additional actuator technology to facilitate expansion at a later date.
Two PCI express slots for interface cards are available to support interfaces not available in the standard configuration, such as RS422, EIA-485 or IEEE 1394.
Electrical additional axes and grippers, for example, can be connected to an additional motor output and encoder input and controlled via pulse-width modulation.
At the heart of Robotino® is a robust embedded PC in line with the COM Express specification.
This is how the scalability of the computing power is achieved. Robotino® uses a powerful four-core processor with hyper-threading. The operating system and all user data is stored on a removable 64 GB solid state drive (SSD). All data is freely accessible and unencrypted. Data and commands can be conveniently transmitted via the connected access point in 2.4 and 5 GHz. A separate network can be set up using a changeover switch or connected to an existing network. The motor control is carried out by a 32-bit microcontroller that directly generates the pulse-width-modulation signals for actuating up to four electric DC motors.
Robotino® View is the interactive, graphical programming and learning environment for Robotino®. It communicates directly with the robot system via wireless LAN and can be executed locally on Robotino®. The programming system combines modern operating concepts for an easy introduction to robot programming without source code. In addition to access to sensors and battery data, various ready-made function blocks can also be used to add neutral blocks such as function generators or logic operators with one click. The range is rounded off by access to the autonomous functions available at any time for navigation in previously explored environments. The applications that are ready for operation in minutes can be quickly expanded thanks to intuitive operation and can optionally be executed and further developed directly on the robot. In addition to this interface for process-based programs, we offer the free tool Robotino® Factory, which is used to orchestrate the mapping and navigation used for autonomous functions. In the laboratory environment, paths and target positions can be registered and made available for programming in minutes.
This software package provides you with various ready-made models with typical configurations.
Regardless of the hardware, you can gain initial insights and the ability to improve programs. You will create your applications in a safe environment and continue working seamlessly with the real Robotino®.
The world of mobile robotics is opened up to you with eleven consecutive projects. Each project exercise is integrated into a practical problem description.
Topics covered include:
Open programming environment
The programming interface (API) of Robotino® allows various programming languages and systems to be used to develop a control program. The API supports the following languages and systems:
With our software controller, you can directly access Robotino® motors. Create your own motor controller, for example in MATLAB, and adapt its control loop.
Tailored to your requirements
We deliver Robotino precisely as per your specifications. In addition to the basic equipment consisting of two optical sensors, one analogue sensor and the jacking device for table-top experiments, the number of batteries (two or more recommended), power supply units, attachment towers and segments can be freely selected and adapted to your learning situation
Robotino®can be found in industrial applications in the CP Factory.
Based on the middleware Smartsoft, one or more Robotinos®from MES 4 are used as AGVs via a fleet manager.
The integration of CNC machines into systems like the CP Factory provides vocational training on complex systems. This is where all areas of modern production systems come together.
The individual systems can also be spatially separated with the help of mobile robots.