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Comau unveils new software for ‘easy programming of complex robotic applications’

Comau has unveiled what it describes as a “powerful software program” based on artificial intelligence algorithms that makes man-machine communication easier while optimizing industrial operations.

The industrial automation company says its MI.RA/Dexter reflects Comau’s “commitment to simplified automation”.

MI.RA/Dexter is a metalanguage that makes aims to make robotics more accessible for companies of all sizes by translating human language syntax into robot syntax.

This enables operators to easily program a robotic system using simple and intuitive controls, such as look at an object, touch a specific point in space, listen to voice recognition operations, and reproduce and execute complex actions.

The simplified programming interface also allows the operator to quickly adapt, adjust and correct the actions of the robot in real time, optimizing work cycle efficiency.

Given that MI.RA/Dexter does not require specific competence in IT or robotics, and therefore enables customers to reduce or eliminate dedicated robot programming costs. It also helps streamline the creation of complex programs required for interacting with robotic arms, and can be used to program any industrial technology in a smart and straightforward way.

Giovanni Di Stefano, Comau’s chief innovation officer, says: “With MI.RA/Dexter, complex technology becomes more accessible and less expensive thanks to the user-friendly software interface and metalanguage syntax.

“The intuitive system, which is based on AI algorithms and can be used in virtually any industrial sector, also grants real-time adjustment of the process parameters for better operative quality and efficiency.”

MI.RA/Dexter was recently used by quality control operators to program a complex robotic cell for the New Fiat 500 full-electric. The customer tasked Comau with automating the testing and control process for the vehicle’s infotainment system.

These procedures are typically long, repetitive and carried out manually, with high costs and a significant margin of error.

Comau’s solution combined an NJ-220 robot in its Safe version with a Racer5 cobot mounted on its wrist to carry out automated testing activities inside the car, increasing the efficiency, traceability and repeatability of the procedure.

The collaborative system also helps ensure full compliance with the testing process by objectively assisting the operator in completing each assigned task.

To do so, the system includes devices that feature an “almost human” sensitivity, such as a vision system for the validation of infotainment apps, a microphone and speaker for the recognition of voice commands, and a gripper for delicate contact operations.

Comau says the inherent safety features of the 6-axis articulated cobot eliminate the need for protective barriers, which reduces both the overall footprint and the safety costs.

The MI.RA/Dexter programming language allowed the operators to manage the complex robotic system autonomously. Among the activities was the safe management of the actions that the collaborative robot had to perform in close contact with the operator and the automation and subsequent optimization of the required testing tasks.

It is part of the Comau MI.RA (Machine Inspection Recognition Archetypes) family, which also includes other digital tools and advanced-technology vision systems designed for the Smart Factory.

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