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A Safety Model for Collaborative Robots

Smaller collaborative robots have been commercially installed in the past years. However, commercial installations with robots large enough to lift and hold components that otherwise would require operators to use lifting tools are rare. Here, humans and robots actually hold components together. Today, there is no comprehensive work model to identify and manage all workplace safety and ergonomics issues that emerge when collaborative robots are to be installed. Our idea is to develop a generic model for collaborative safety analysis and utilisation of safety techniques based on the ISO/TS 15066 standard applicable for industry use.

Such a model could increase the robot installation rate and tap the full production potential for collaborative robot installations in Swedish industry. Our approach will be to identify the limitations of current safety assessment procedures in industry when analysing potential collaborative robot applications, take advantage of state-of-the-art safety techniques for collaborative robotics, particularly collision avoidance strategies, and complement the current safety assessment procedures to incorporate collaborative robots. The updated procedures will facilitate higher MRL for collaborative robot installations, and are based on results from the ongoing FFI-project Team of Man and Machine (ToMM) where efficient management of safety issues have been identified as crucial for collaborative robot project success.

Funded by: 

Vinnova - Produktion2030 Programme

Time period: 

2016 - 2018

Project partners:

  • Swerea IVF (Coordinator)
  • Linköping University 
  • AB Volvo
  • KTH Royal Institute of Technology
  • Scania CV
  • Volvo Cars

Read more about the project here at Kunskapsförmedlingen's website.