Institute for
HSR

SiLA® Robotic Cell

A robotic cell has been developed to demonstrate the competence of the ILT on fairs and promotional events, especially in the area of robotics, image processing and laboratory automation. This cell consists of two main components: a low-cost open-source image processing and a standard industrial articulated robot. These components are controlled by a PMS (process management system) through a SiLA® interface (SiLA® = The demo cell is a good example for an implementation of this communication standard for a device that was not developed primary for laboratory applications).

Application of the demo cell

The demo cell is skilled to put back together the pieces (dices) on which ILT pictograms are applied. The pieces located anywhere in the working range are detected by image processing, measured, sorted and sent to the PMS. The PMS then sends the appropriate commands to the articulated robot, which then puts the dices with the pictograms in correct order. Finally, the robot dissolves the correctly set up pictograms by tilting the shelf.

Communication – SiLA®

The SiLA® Standard was applied for the communication between the different devices. On the image processing side, SiLA® was directly implemented into the device (certified equipment). On the robot side, a Core Service Provider was implemented as a SiLA® Interface Converter (supported equipment).

Image processing

The complete image processing is based on the open source software OpenCV and runs on a single board computer (Raspberry Pi), whereat the image is being taken by a simple pinhole camera. Through the use of these components a very cost-effective embedded image processing system can be achieved. Since there are no licensing costs, the costs of this image processing system are less than CHF 100 even for small quantities.

 

For this application, the following functions have been implemented into image processing:

 

  • Detection of 1D and 2D codes
  • Treatment of the captured image
  • Object recognition
  • Pixel comparison

Robotics

For this application, an industrial articulated robot of the latest generation is used.It is a KUKA KR6 Sixx with a KRC 4 compact controller. The communication with the PMS system is performed on three levels.

 

  • On the windows level of the robot controller, the Service Provider Core receives the SiLA® commands,
  • On the first level of real-time robot control, the submit interpreter receives these commands,
  • On the second level of real-time robot control, the motion commands are being executed.

Please contact us for further information.

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