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This project, funded by Gebert Rüf Stiftung, is supported by the following project partners: Venture Kick; NCCR Robotics, Robotic Systems Lab, ETH Zurich.
Project no: GRS-018/18
Amount of funding: CHF 250'000
Duration: 08.2018 - 04.2020
Area of activity:
Pilotprojekte, 1998 - 2018
Robotic Systems Lab
Leonhardstrasse 21, LEEH219
8057 Zürich (Schweiz)
- klajd.lika@mavt. ethz. ch
There is a massively growing demand for robotic systems that can collaborate with humans or other machines. In order to create machines that can robustly and safely interact with their environment, it is indispensable to precisely and reliably measure the interaction forces. Rokubi Mini is an integrated sensing solution for robots that serves that purpose. Rokubi Mini is extremely resistant against impacts, temperature changes and EMI, as initially was developed for quadruped robots, to measure the ground reaction forces when walking and running at harsh environments. As such, this technology can enhance robotic arms, exoskeletons, prosthetic devices, or robotic surgery platforms. Emphasis is given for applications with collaborative robots, which is an extremely growing market that demands our technology. Our force-torque sensors will give machines the sense of touch, will allow them to become smarter and to work side by side with humans. This is a step towards a smooth integration of robots with humans and an enabling technology for a variety of industry and research sectors.
What is special about the project?
Force controlled robotic applications had until now limited use across the human-robot collaboration sector due to their high price and sensitivity against mishandlings. With this project, precise force control is going to become one of the standard options for a Collaborative Robot. Moreover, will give the robotic research sector the opportunity to widen its application areas, where human and robots can work together.
Our sensor is built with a very clever mechanical and electrical design that allows for high-precision and drift-free measurements and our electronics are developed very carefully to match it with excellent accuracy and repeatability.
To guarantee accuracy and reliability, our sensor will be the first 6-axis Force Torque measuring instrument that International Regulations of Legal Metrology will be applied on. This guarantee will make our technology a standard and essential part for healthcare robotics innovation.
Rokubi Mini is integrated and used on ANYmal quadruped robot, MABI Speedy 12 robot, Rezero ball robot. Moreover, Rokubi Mini is used for research on Autonomous Systems Lab of ETH Zurich for aerial manipulation and inspection.
Moreover, parts of Rokubi Mini developed electronics and software, that are developed during GRS Rokubi Mini, are used in several other projects and Laboratories. Some of them: Student focus project of ETH Zurich Chiron is using three of early prototypes of new types of sensors that are using Rokubi mini’s electronics and software. Gramazio Kohler Research is using one of these sensors for assembly tasks in digital fabrication. This sensor has very big range that can work in construction tasks for automated house construction.
There are already 16 units sold to selected customers with great customer feedback.
Partnership with two, big service and commercial robotics manufacturers for high volume orders is in the pipeline.
Currently we are focusing on global market development. A company will be founded in Zurich with the name BOTA Systems AG
Roman Kaeslin, Hendrik Kolvenbach, Laura Paez, Klajd Lika and Marco Hutter, «Towards a Passive Adaptive Planar Foot with Ground Orientation and Contact Force Sensing for Legged Robots», International Conference on Intelligent Robots (IROS 2018)
H Kolvenbach, C Bärtschi, L Wellhausen, R Grandia, M Hutter, Haptic inspection of planetary soils with legged robots“, IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters 4 (2), 1626-1632
Persons involved in the project
Last update to this project presentation 14.04.2020