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Automatic robot configuration system cuts times by 80%

09 September, 2022

The Danish robotics developer OnRobot has demonstrated what it describes as the first software platform for configuring robotic applications automatically. It claims that the system, called D:Ploy, can cut the time it takes to deploy robots by up to 80%.

The system, which is being previewed at this week’s IMTS show in Chicago, automatically discovers and configures all of the components in a robotic cell – including collaborative or light industrial robot arms and tools – as well as integrating external I/O from sensors and machines. The company has been working on the technology for four years.

“D:Ploy is a foundational market shift that will change the way automation is deployed, expanding the market at the same time,” predicts Kristian Hulgard, general manager of OnRobot’s Americas division.

The company sees D:Ploy as a turning point in a strategic evolution that it started with its intuitive robot tools and software, expanding the concept of collaborative automation.

“The dramatic 80% reduction in deployment time is just one powerful illustration of what D:Ploy offers,” Hulgard adds. “Now system integrators can take on more projects with existing resources. Robot manufacturers benefit from dramatically greater accessibility for their products. And end-users gain powerful new abilities to implement, manage, and redeploy automation across their facilities.”

At IMTS, OnRobot has been demonstrating D:Ploy in a machine-tending application using a Universal Robots UR5e collaborative robot arm. The demo shows how the entire application is accessed and managed from D:Ploy’s dashboard. Users simply define the robot’s workspace with minimal inputs on points within the workspace, and enter attributes of the workpiece. The system then generates all of the program logic, signal exchanges, event handling, path planning, and real-time monitoring for the application automatically.

OnRobot’s D:Ploy automated robot deployment system has been demonstrated at the IMTS show in Chicago, in a machine-tending cell using a Universal Robots cobot
Photo: Business Wire

Visitors to IMTS can also see the “one-system solution” that laid the groundwork for D:Ploy by allowing any OnRobot end-of-arm tool (EOAT) to interface with any leading robot arm via a unified mechanical and electrical interface. The visitors can choose an EOAT and simply click it on and off a Fanuc CRX robot arm equipped with OnRobot’s Quick Changer technology.

The Danish company is also demonstrating a new easy-to-program, out-of-the-box collaborative system designed to take the pain out of palletising. The hardware and software package that can also be launched as an application program via the D:Ploy interface. The IMTS palletiser demo is using a Doosan M1013 robot.

“Entering our IMTS booth, the breadth of collaborative automation and compatibility of OnRobot is immediately apparent,” says Hulgard, pointing to the many different robot brands and applications on display. “Our offerings, and the way we will now unify them all through D:Ploy, will help change how we think about collaborative automation, broadening its accessibility and improving success for manufacturers in almost any industry.”

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