Under the new brand name "Co-act" (collaborative actuator), SCHUNK presents its competence in gripping technology for future human/robot collaboration. The new SCHUNK HRC grippers, Co-act Gripper JL1, EGP, EGN and WSG were presented for the first time in live applications (Co-act Gripper Meets Cobots) at the Automatica 2016 show.
With the NEW SCHUNK technology carrier Co-act gripper JL1, SCHUNK is setting the stage for the first intelligent HRC gripper that directly interacts with humans. Adjustments to the gripping processes can be made in real time using diverse sensor systems. In essence, various “senses” are used to record, evaluate and communicate situational, environmental and operational conditions.
In the future, SCHUNK Co-act grippers will be able to transmit all relevant data about processes andsurroundings to the control and production systems. The focus will be on the intelligent flow of materials, process optimization and continuous documentation. The system perfectly enhances the intuitive interaction between the gripper and the operator.
For the prevention of collisions
Enables communication with the gripper as well as teaching or switching to various operating modes
Mounted between the fingers for detecting the surroundings, differentiating and searching for objects
Two types of grips for gripping any geometries
Ideal for handling heavy workpiece weights
For in time detection and differentiation of workpieces and humans
Through the use of LED lights, the Co-act gripper JL1 provides information to the operator about the status of the gripper and identification of the workpieces
From robots that replace workers to robots that serve as helpful colleagues, the field of robotic automation is experiencing a new trend that represents a huge challenge for component manufacturers.
Whenever full automation of production or assembly lines is not the most economically feasible option, it is necessary to single out individual processes to be delegated between humans and robots. In such situations, autonomous cobots, meaning robots used in the worker’s immediate environment, can handle non-ergonomic or monotonous tasks such as assisting with lifting or positioning loads. This reduces the physical workload for workers and makes the process more efficient. At the same time, humans and robots working hand in hand helps to minimize space requirements and increase flexibility.
The number of robotic assistance systems will increase in the future, especially with regard to assembly applications.
Reliable grippers, safety functions, sensors and end-to-end integration at the component level will be vital.
As the competence leader for clamping technology and gripping systems, SCHUNK is intensely committed to this new challenge.
The various forms of interaction between humans and robots are defined by the types of machining areas and forms of contact. A distinction is made between separate and shared machining areas, between decoupled and coupled work processes as well as between levels of contact. The more closely humans and robots work together, the more technologies and components are required to meet higher safety requirements regulated by the relevant standards.
SCHUNK grippers never lose a workpiece and comply with the general principles for design.
The certified Safety Gripping Systems EGN and EZN allow the functionalities SLS, SOS, and STO. Depending on the activated safety zone, the grippers either switch to a state of safe limited speed or safe stop.
The new HRC grippers SCHUNK “Co-act gripper” meet the safety requirements for robots, robot systems and integration, as well as for collaborative robots, and exclude injuries to humans.
As a pioneer, SCHUNK is a decisive leader in cutting edge automation topics with safe, robust and intelligent gripping technology. With the aim to open up new opportunities for sustainable efficient production automation in the full automation, the functional safety, and for human/robot collaborations.
Shared machining areas with decoupled work processes. The process switches to a slow, safe speed whenever a human enters the area. If the distance becomes too small to ensure safe operation, the system will be stopped and the energy supply will be maintained.
Shared machining areas with coupled work processes. The cells continue to work, even in the presence of humans. Any human contact with dangerous areas is detected at all times.
With the Co-act gripper SCHUNK is capturing a trend and focusing on carrier technology in the development of HRC-ready actuators.
The aim is for SCHUNK Co-act grippers to directly interact with humans and to communicate in accordance with regulatroy requirements.
Grippers never cause injuries when gripping
Grippers always detect human contact
Grippers never lose a workpiece
Gripping force limitation is activated in dangerous situations. Otherwise, the gripper can be operated with any force possible.
The HRC-compatible design eliminates all possible risk of injury as a result of human contact.
Grippers must prevent injuries to humans even with high gripping forces. Gripped parts are held reliably if a process is interrupted.
The use of different sensors for detecting humans and the environment while simultaneously sensing the workpiece and differentiating it from human hands.
Gripper software that evaluates and processes the signals of the environmental sensors. This intelligent software empowers the gripper with artificial intelligence.
In the context of its technology carrier HRC-ready gripper concepts, SCHUNK is oriented toward real-world applications within a variety of industries. The experience gained as a result will influence the ongoing development of SCHUNK Co-act grippers.
Aim: The results of this technology carrier are intended for the specific development of a certified overall Co-act gripper system. In the process, the HRC gripper, finger design with environmental detection as well as other factors such as work environment, robots and workpiece supply are all considered.
HRC topic: Collaborative assembly of mechatronics assembly groups
Application: Using an MPG-plus Co-act gripper, robots precisely insert electronic components in the housing. The final assembly and functional testing are carried out by the employee.
Customer benefits: Increase in efficiency due to simultaneous work processes and taking over tasks that require high concentration
HRC topic: Collaborative assembly of heavy workpieces
Application: Using an EGP Co-act gripper, robots guide motor adapters to motor blocks, position them and hold them in position while fitting the screws. The fine adjustments and screw fittings are carried out manually by employees.
Customer benefits: Improvement of ergonomics and increase of efficiency due to simultaneous work processes
Industry: Quality assurancee
HRC topic: Collaborative handling of workpieces in dangerous areas
Application: Aluminum cast mounting brackets are to be tested for quality using an x-ray machine. Using a WSG Co-act gripper, robots handle tasks within the radiation areas of x-ray machines. Reworking or removal of components is carried out by employees.
Customer benefits: Protection of employee health
HRC topic: Collaborative assembly of heavy workpieces
Application: Using the EGN Co-act gripper, robots function as "intelligent load lifters" for handling rims. Employees guide the grippers to the rims using the manual guidance function, positioning them in the wheel housing. After positioning, rims are mounted by employees.
Customer benefits: Improvement of ergonomics and load carrying with heavy workpieces
Industry: Electronics industry
HRC topic: Collaborative handling with delicate assembly
Application: Using an EGP Co-act gripper, robots equip the housing with circuit boards. It transfers the fully assembled module to the employee working next to it for fixing the screws and quality testing.
Customer benefits: Eliminates the necessity of performing tasks requiring a high level of concentration
Industry: Metalworking industry
HRC topic: Collaborative handling for repetitive tasks
Application: Using a WSG Co-act gripper, robots load and unload machine tools. Employees can operate several machines and ensure the supply of raw and finished parts.
Customer benefits: Increase in efficiency thanks to loading being performed by robots Meets Cobots