One Robotic Arm Grasps Multiple Parts
October 31, 2019
The Times of Israel — Researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev say they have developed a one-size-fits-all robotic arm for use in manufacturing processes that can grasp items of various shapes, thus cutting costs and increasing versatility in production lines.
The invention, developed by Prof. Amir Shapiro and Dr. Avishay Sintov from BGU’s Department of Mechanical Engineering, relies on a newly developed search algorithm that can assess the various areas to be grasped in specific parts. The algorithm then defines a common set of grasping points for all objects in a given group, thus enabling the design of one robotic arm that will be able to handle all the parts.
Designing, manufacturing and installing the various graspers on each robot on the production line is costly and time consuming. With this invention product manufacturers will no longer have to design robots with different arms for each task so that they’re able to firmly grip each part they need to handle.
“This seemingly simple solution is based on a sophisticated algorithm developed by Prof. Shapiro and Dr. Sintov that can increase the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of production lines,” said Danny Staier, who does business development in exact sciences and engineering for BGN Technologies.
BGN is the technology transfer company of the university, which brings technological innovations from the lab to the market. BGN has filed patents to protect the invention, and is now seeking “a strategic partner for the further development and commercialization of the technology,” Staier said.