Collaborative Robot Applications at GKN Aerospace’s Fokker Business

Paper #:
  • 2017-01-2091

Published:
  • 2017-09-19
Abstract:
The use of Collaborative Robots (Cobots) is an emerging technology that is developing at a fast pace. Within Fokker Technologies, part of GKN Aerospace, a project is initiated to accelerate knowledge of application of this technology. The primary difference between Cobotics and a conventional Robotics approach is that the technology can safely exist in an human operating environment without caging or other hard guarding. Both Fokker Aerostructures and Fokker Landing Gear wanted to gain experience with this technology and worked together in the preparation of 2 projects to be showcased in their companies. Fokker Aerostructures concentrated on the application of handling of an Automatic Drilling Unit (ADU) for the production of the A350 Outboard Flap. Task of the Cobot was to pick-up an ADU from a table and insert the ADU in a drill jig. Goal of the project was to free-up well trained workers for more difficult tasks and have the robot work on “simple” tasks. Fokker Landing Gear concentrated on the application to use a collaborating robot on the shopfloor as an assistant for the operator to apply an even bead of sealant for a limited number of bushings. Goal of the application is to reduce operating time and to initiate a repeatable and improvable process. Goal of the project is to get familiar with the technology and possibilities of a COBOT. The paper describes the results of the mentioned projects with an emphasis on potential savings and improvement of ergonomic conditions by the use of collaborating robots. Specific topic in the paper will be the safe operation between humans and robots ( HRC = Human Robot Collaboration).
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