Public Summary Month 3/2012

Within the last two months we have focused on integration and evaluation which took place at office and lab environments and at the SCHUNK production facilities. Within the onging integration we were able to fix many of the open technical issues. Besides the developed mobile manipulator itself the main results are:

Localization according the ambient magnetic field

Overall, the localization results were satisfying, even though the recording of sensor data for larger environments still poses a difficulty. A global search for the best matching position of a sensor path history found the robots position with an accuracy of 10cm to 5cm in 8 to 9 out of 10 tests. The few failing tests can be attributed to particularly bad path movement data – if the robot performs mostly on-the-spot rotations, the matching of the path data structure will fail, because there is no path to speak of. We can therefore conclude that magnetic localization will only provide good results if the robot has driven a suitable distance before evaluating the sensor readings.


Low cost box detection

We have designed and realized special gripper fingers that are able to grasp standard crates while carrying 12 MAGMODULEs and a small camera, too. We are able to coarsely position the arm over the box. From there, the magnetic box detection has to take over. We found out that in case of an empty crate only disturbances of the earth's magnetic field the measurements reaches standard deviations of approximately one millimeter. This result is to be interpreted as very positive and a stable use under a real production surrounding seems to be possible. But, we also found out that metal plates act as a disturbance. The largest error of three millimeters were identified in those cases.


In addition, we have presented the project results at 5th International Expert Days on Service Robotics and at the Innorobo 2012 in Lyon. The next events for demonstration and exploitation are Hannover Messe within the area of mobile robots and autonomous systems in April 2012 and the Automatica within the ECHORD booth in May 2012. With KANMAN we have applied for the German “Innovationspreis IT”, a yearly contest about the best new IT products. The contest is managed by the Initiative Mittelstand under the patronage of the Federal Commissioner of the German Federal Government Cornelia Rogall-Grothe and IBM Germany. Under in total 2,500 applications KANMAN was awarded under the TOP 20 in the section logistics.


Finally,... thanks to our experiment moderator Germano Veiga and the whole ECHORD-team for their support during our experiment!