Robotics

Vision-guided robot technology benefits

Vision-guided robot (VGR) applications are useful for manufacturing applications and are quickly becoming commonplace as technology costs continue to drop.
By Robotic Industries Association (RIA) January 27, 2019
Courtesy: Bob Vavra, CFE Media

Over the past few decades, automation technology has advanced dramatically. As a result, robots have become faster, more accurate and more capable of automating a wider range of tasks. Vision technology has become cheaper, faster, and more intelligent over the years, as well. Recently, the two automation technologies have proven useful when used together.

Vision-guided robot (VGR) applications are quickly becoming commonplace. This is in large part due to the fact that the cost of the latest technology is steadily decreasing. Also, the lights, cameras, lenses, lasers, and software are all dropping in price, making them more accessible to more end users. On top of this, vision technology is becoming more capable too. Cameras are smarter than ever, while sensors can capture more detail and transfer more image data to a computer for better analysis.

VGR technology is a primary driver of market adoption. However, customers are demanding more than ever.

Vision-guided robot demands from end users

Demands from the end users of vision guided robots help determine the future direction of the technology. Today, end users are demanding a few common things from their VGR technology.

  • Random picking: End users are requesting random bin picking capabilities to replace dedicated operators and also simplify the assembly line.
  • Softer fixtures: VGR technology needs to be able to pick and place objects with variations in part orientation in location to reduce costs associated with fixtures.
  • Higher flexibility: In addition to handling variety in part orientation, VGR technology needs to handle multiple parts on the same assembly line.
  • High integration: End users are requiring an increasing convergence of robot and vision technology and requesting robots that position cameras for inspection, or position parts in front of a camera, to maximize efficiencies in production.

End user demand helps drive technological innovation and shapes the future of this technology. In today’s manufacturing environment, end users are requesting many of the same things and suppliers are working to be the first to meet these demands.

VGR technology has advanced rapidly over the years. Integrating robot and vision technologies has increased the flexibility, speed, and profitability of robotic applications in the industrial sector.

This article originally appeared on the Robotics Online BlogRobotic Industries Association (RIA) is a part of the Association for Advancing Automation (A3), a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Chris Vavra, production editor, Control Engineering, CFE Media, cvavra@cfemedia.com.


Robotic Industries Association (RIA)