V4R (Vision for Robotics) simplifies vision/robot integration

Paul Boughton

Stemmer Imaging, Kuka Switzerland and the Interstaatliche Hochschule für Technik (Interstate College for Technology NTB) in Buchs, Switzerland, have developed a robotics software package, V4R (Vision for Robotics), using Stemmer Imaging's Common Vision Blox (CVB) imaging toolkit. Image processing provides mechanical robots with a new mode of perception by giving them added vision capability. The V4R software runs directly on the Kuka robot controller, so a separate image processing PC is not required; users with robotics experience can code the vision application in the language with which they are familiar.
The V4R system handles synchronisation of the camera co-ordinate system with the robot co-ordinate system, recognition of the position and orientation of parts in 2D, and data exchange with the robot program. In just a few steps and without any programming, users can set up the system to best match the robot and image processing. The core of the system uses the CVB Foundation Package and CVB Shapefinder. Other CVB tools can also be integrated to provide additional functionality.
Users can teach the system how to recognise objects and translate this into automatic operation. With the recent introduction of the GigE Vision standard, a GigE Vision camera can plug directly into the Kuka robot controller and all the program scripting is carried out within the Kuka language, with just the vision settings configured via the graphical user interface. The use of GigE Vision also provides a high degree of flexibility in camera selection.
For more information, visit www.stemmer-imaging.co.uk

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