Autonomous bin picking with a collaborative mobile robot

Bruno Adam
Written by

Omron Mobile Robot Business Director Europe and General Manager Omron Adept Technologies.

Our TM collaborative robot provides a unique solution to easily automate applications such as picking and packing that, traditionally performed by humans, have been challenging to automate. As part of the TM series launch, we also released a mobile-compatible model, which seamlessly integrates into Omron’s LD series autonomous mobile robot. Combined with a 3D vision camera mounted directly onto the collaborative robot, this enables for example e-commerce companies to automate more complex tasks. This includes pick and place of various items onto a tray or container, as well as connecting production processes with the autonomous mobile robots for flexible manufacturing and materials handling.

In our bin picking demonstration, the collaborative robot, which is equipped with sensors and a 3D vision camera mounted, is able to pick up known objects with random overlapping positions out of a bin. This is traditionally performed by humans, due to the fact that the weight, shape and orientation of the pieces require different force and gripping technology when picked. The 3D camera locates items and sends their co-ordinates to the robot, while the software makes the advanced calculations required for optimized trajectory and force to pick up goods. LD mobile robots will then be responsible of transporting sorted goods.

Implementing the collaborative and mobile robot for bin picking relieves humans from repetitive and monotonous tasks, improving efficiency and traceability, while working alongside people.

Why is random bin picking a challenge?

Random bin picking has been challenging to automate, with many companies working on solutions in this area, and e-commerce retailers even holding competitions focused on robotic solutions for bin picking. Advanced technologies including 3D vision and 3D analysis have to be used to enable picking from random positions. Our solution demonstrates picking a wider variety of parts directly from the bin, eliminating the need for bulk feeding.

Human-machine collaboration enables flexibility

The TM series collaborative robot family was designed to realize an innovative manufacturing environment where humans and machines work in harmony. With the various vision functionalities and the simple, intuitive programming environment of the TM collaborative robots, Omron will further enable safe, flexible, and collaborative manufacturing between human and machine. Robotic bin picking can relieve workers from tedious and monotonous tasks, for example in labour-intensive order fulfillment.

See a live demonstration of the bin picking solution at Hannover Messe! Get your free ticket here.

Also, don’t miss our presentation at the Hannover Messe Forum Automation on 2 April, 11:40-12:00, in Hall 14, Stand L19, on the topic of ‘Creating a business case for human-machine collaboration.

Bruno Adam
Written by
Bruno Adam

Partner in Intelligent visionguided robotics

Bruno Adam, Omron Mobile Robot Business Director Europe

The word robot comes from the Slavic word robota, which means labour. Although the Chinese already philosophized about mechanical replacements of people in the third century BC, it has only been a mere six decades ago that the first industrial robot was introduced. Bruno Adam, Omron Mobile Robot Business Director Europe and General Manager Omron Adept Technologies, has witnessed the recent rise of intelligent robots and has contributed to its development in his rich 30 years of experience in industrial robotics.

Bruno graduated in 1986 in Industrial Automation Engineering from the University of Savoy. Soon after completing his study he was involved in the first robotics applications addressing production processes using 6-axis poly articulated robots. The robots were designed to combine artificial Vision Systems and Motion Controllers that made use of adaptive algorithms. Bruno than moved on to continue his career in the United States. He took on a position in Silicon Valley at Adept, a global, leading provider of intelligent vision-guided robotics systems and services, that in 2015 became part of Omron.

In America Bruno was in charge of OEM Motion Control activities and participated in the development of the last generations of multiple kinematics robot controllers. This resulted in opening new application opportunities, such as ultra-high-speed manipulation. Another opportunity that emerged was real time trajectory modification based on data coming from different types of sensor technologies. In 2003, Bruno founded Cerebellum Automation specialised in the development of customized Robots Control Solutions.

Since the commercial launch of Omron Mobile Robots in Europe in 2013, Bruno manages a team in charge of the identifying the main markets and applications that require flexible and adaptive transport and conveyance. The unit is supported by a team of Applications and Software Engineers to deploy the technology in the manufacturing industry in Europe. Bruno regularly represents Omron as a key-note speaker at various industry summits and seminars.

Contact Omron specialists

Do you have any questions or would you like personal advice?Feel free to contact one of our specialists