Home Bots & Business Kawasaki teams with Realtime Robotics on industrial robots

Kawasaki teams with Realtime Robotics on industrial robots

by Pieter Werner

Realtime Robotics and Kawasaki Robotics will work together on automating the programming, deployment and control of its industrial robots. Realtime Robotics and Kawasaki have partnered on several projects, including helping a major automotive manufacturer improve the speed of programming by 70%.

This manufacturer reduced the pre-production engineering commissioning process through the use of automatic, collision-free motion planning technology; technology that in the future will enable the time-consuming physical validation of robot paths to be eliminated altogether.

Kawasaki and Realtime Robotics have collaborated to create a demo cell in Kawasaki’s booth (#2332) at Automate 2022, taking place at the Huntington Place Convention Center in Detroit, MI, from June 6-9, 2022. The spot-welding demo cell displays the combined power of Kawasaki Robotics open programming platform, KRNX, and Realtime Robotics’ innovative motion planning and collision avoidance software, integrated with two BX100N Kawasaki robots. KRNX, a powerful API plugin, enables Real Time Control (RTC) by advanced users to execute complex and irregular applications. KRNX opens the door for Kawasaki robots to leverage unlimited external computing power, enabling anything from AI and machine learning applications to advanced safety.

In the demo, two Kawasaki BX100N robots simulate the welding of a car door using ARO 3G modular spot welding guns. Realtime Robotics innovative RapidPlan software enables show attendees to see firsthand how quickly and efficiently robot motions can be modified – all without any reprogramming or manual verification of motion planning. Users are able to start, stop or reset all or any individual robots; modify target allocation; change target order; and add or remove existing targets to the robot sequence.

“The combination of Kawasaki’s quality robots, advanced programming platform and Realtime Robotics software is an industry game changer, providing manufacturers from all industries with unprecedented flexibility, from automating programming of robotic motion and collision avoidance to the very design of the manufacturing floor. This is the future of automation, and the very best is yet to come,” said Kazuhiro Saito, President at Kawasaki Robotics.

Depending on the complexity of the project, the number of robots the customer programs and whether they are starting from scratch or simply making modifications, programming requirements can be shortened by weeks with Realtime Robotics RapidPlan software.

During the on-site physical validation stage, a user typically needs to have a highly-skilled team working after hours to manually run through every move combination, ensuring seamless operations on the live factory floor. Because RapidPlan produces collision-free paths, it automatically removes the need to verify against potential collisions – resulting in significant time savings.

“Today’s automotive manufacturers don’t have time or staff to waste. Factory floors and all related actions must be constantly optimized in order to maintain a competitive advantage and continue delivering excellent product to customers,” said Peter Howard, CEO of Realtime Robotics. “Kawasaki Robotics is a terrific partner to work with, as they understand how speeding or eliminating time-consuming and manual processes can directly improve a manufacturer’s production time – and its profits.”

RapidPlan helps manufacturers have peace of mind in a high-stress and tight space environment, where every minute of downtime is expensive. It is easy to make a mistake, such as grabbing the wrong teach pendant and jogging the robot in the wrong direction, causing a collision. RapidPlan will alert the user of a collision about to happen, in order to prevent it.

The advanced programming, planning, verification and alerting features of Realtime Robotics RapidPlan are what made the technology so attractive to the previously mentioned major automotive manufacturer. By making the entire process more streamlined and efficient, without negatively affecting accuracy, helps them to optimize operations while limiting downtime.

“Kawasaki was one of the first robot companies to see the potential of combining an advanced Real Time Control API like KRNX with our RapidPlan real time autonomous motion planner to enable a whole new way of designing and deploying robotic systems. We feel privileged to have had continuous support from their quality robot family, interface, and people in realizing our joint vision for what the future of robotics should look like,” added Howard.


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