- A new take on human-robot cooperation (HRC): Group Production demonstrates prototype for cooperation between people and industrial robots without rigid safety barriers
- Industrial robots help people lift heavy loads
- Interactive safety zones guarantee safe working for employees
Dynamic safety zones for safe cooperation between people and robots
No, we are not standing at the traffic lights or playing hopscotch. What we can see here is referred to by experts as automation without safety barriers. In the background, an industrial robot is moving and in front of it we can see a pattern of lights with green, yellow and red areas. Group employee Karl-Heinz Häfner moves confidently towards the robot and is still in the green zone. As soon as he touches the first yellow area with his foot, the robot slows down. When the worker reaches the red zone, the robot stops abruptly. If Häfner moves his foot back out of the red zone, the robot starts to move again. What we can see here is a unique development within the Volkswagen Group: a human being can work absolutely safely in the immediate vicinity of an industrial robot without being separated by a fixed safety barrier. This is possible as a result of the laser safety scanner which reliably detects any movements of the employee. A high-level control system coordinates the movements of the human worker and the robot, slowing and stopping the robot as soon as the worker enters the relevant safety zones.