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Siemens and Realtime team up to slash robot deployment times

26 June, 2020

Siemens has joined forces with Realtime Robotics, the US specialist in autonomous motion planning for industrial robots, to slash the time it takes to deploy robots. Under the strategic partnership with Siemens’ Digital Industries Software division (formerly known as Siemens PLM Software), Realtime’s technology will be integrated into Siemens simulation software. This will simplify robot programming and workcell coordination by automating the motion programming and interlock processes.

At present, multi-robot workcells can take prohibitive amounts of engineering time to simulate before entering production. Once deployed, they are inflexible, requiring significant reprogramming for any modification. According to Realtime, this has made multi-robot workcells cost-prohibitive for all but the most stable, high-volume manufacturing.

Realtime has developed a specialised processor that generates safe motion plans for industrial robots and autonomous vehicles in “milliseconds”. It allows robots to work together in unstructured and collaborative workspaces, as well as to react to dynamic obstructions the moment that any changes are perceived.

Combining Siemens’ Tecnomatix Process Simulate simulation software with Realtime’s Controller and RapidPlan products will simplify the programming of automated robotic processes, cutting the time taken to deploy and to adapt to changes, both during simulation and on the shopfloor. The integrated technology will eliminate the need to enter teach-points and to create and manage interference zones.

Realtime claims that customer proof-of-concepts have achieved programming cycle time reductions of more than 70%, enabling quicker, more robust deployments.

Siemens and Realtime predict that their combined technology will allow manufacturers and integrators to program, simulate, and validate automation more easily, simplifying the digital commissioning process.

Realtime Robotics' technology allows users to achieve collision-free robot motions automatically

“We are excited to announce our collaboration with Siemens,” says Realtime Robotics’ CEO, Peter Howard. “Our combined solution provides manufacturers with the flexibility and efficiency they have been clamouring for to expand the deployment of industrial automation. Together we will accelerate the pace of automation.”

Zvi Feuer, a senior vice-president at Siemens Digital Industries Software, adds that the partnership “reflects a paradigm shift in the way robotic applications are programmed and deployed. Together we have created a unique value proposition that will open up a world of possibilities for robotic automation."

• Realtime Robotics has also worked with Mitsubishi Electric and has embedded its hardware and software embedded into the Japanese company’s robots so that they avoid any obstacles in their paths (see video above). The robots are smart enough to adjust or stop their motion if necessary, without any additional programming.

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