Robots: Humans' Dependable Helpers

Research and Development in Robotic Systems

ColRobot (Collaborative Robotics For Assembly and Kitting in Smart Manufacturing)

Safe cooperation between humans and robots has become increasingly important and represents a key element on the way to “Industry 4.0”.

In cooperation with a consortium of universities and industrial partners from all over Europe, the Fraunhofer Institute for Factory Operation and Automation IFF is working on an EU-project called “ColRobot” which is focusing on the automotive and the aviation industry.

ColRobot is short for "Collaborative Robotics for Assembly and Kitting in Smart Manufacturing" and combines cutting-edge European robot technology and end-user requirements for assembly processes to create a collaborative, mobile manipulator that can carry out repetitive, monotonous tasks and assist workers by acting as a third hand. The robot’s portfolio includes, for instance, pick-up and delivery services like the delivery of kits, tools and parts, as well as screwing work and support for assembly processes by holding large parts while the operator works on it. To pick up the necessary parts and tools, the robot will be able to navigate autonomously in the factory.

The interaction with the ColRobot robot can take place physically as well as by means of gestures, demonstrations and touch commands. Therefore a new safety system is used, which monitors the entire work process and ensures the safety of the operator at all times.

By the end of the project, two exemplary tasks will be implemented in a real environment and executed by the robot.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement N° 688807.

Duration: February 2016 – January 2019

Project Coordinator: Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Arts et Métiers