System integrators sought for vision-guided robotics

07/06/2006


Braintech Inc. and ABB started a Vision Guided Robotics Channel Partner Program, and ABB recruited CIM Systems Inc. as the first certified TrueView Integrator, the companies reported. Braintech, provider of Vision Guided Robotic (VGR) software, also announced receiving its first order for eVF software as part of ABB’s Channel Partner VGR market expansion initiative; eVF, the vision part of ABB’s TrueView VGR system, is designed to allow engineering groups to easily build and support a new breed of intelligent, vision-controlled robotic applications.

ABB’s TrueView systems can eliminate highly structured and fixtured manufacturing technologies (such as conveyors or transfer lines). The order, from ABB Channel Partner CIM Systems, is for a pair of proven TrueView cells using Braintech’s SC3D guidance technology to palletize V8 engine blocks. The system is unique, Braintech says, because it acts as an “infinite buffer,” which allows the blocks to be packed in or out between machining applications.

Dave Fox, CIM Systems president, says, “We’ve already quoted several additional TrueView systems since becoming certified earlier this year. Successfully adding vision to robots creates new opportunities for customers to automate” operations, particularly material handling.

Training to become TrueView Certified covers software, robot programming procedures, and system integration. Rick Lemberg, engineer from CIM Systems, after attending certification training, called TrueView an “extremely powerful robot guidance tool,” user friendly with a simple interface. Jerry Osborn, VP and GM of ABB’s Robot Automation, says he expects others to certify, allowing easy expansion into the automotive tier, heavy duty trucking, and general industry.

Braintech is based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. CIM Systems is in Noblesville, IN. ABB Robotics North American headquarters is in Auburn Hills, MI.

--Edited by Mark T. Hoske , Control Engineering editor in chief





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