February 15, 2012
A New Age of Industrial Robots
The ROS-Industrial project leverages the legacy of Adept's leadership in industrial automation, the rapidly growing community of ROS developers, and SwRI's experience in transitioning technology from research to practical application. It is the objective of the project to merge the expansive development opportunities offered by open source software with the exacting requirements associated with production and manufacturing.
"This is a tremendous step forward for the robotics industry," said John Dulchinos, president and chief executive officer of Adept. "Bringing together the factory proven performance of Adept robots with the enabling open source software technology of ROS extends the state-of-the-art in industrial robotics, and makes the largest library of reusable robotics applications software available to a demanding industrial community to lower their total cost of ownership."
Willow Garage, makers of the PR2 research robot, created and has supported ROS as part of its commitment to open source robotics software and the furtherance of the open source robotics community. The company has been a leader in founding and continuing to contribute heavily to the robot operating system, ROS. ROS software is free for anyone to use and change, and free for other companies to commercialize on. As has been proven in other fields, an open source approach enables robotics innovation and helps ensure that the adoption of robotic technologies is a transparent process.
"We are excited to be working with Adept to bring an open source software platform and the industry's largest applications library to industrial applications," said Steve Cousins, president and CEO of Willow Garage. "Willow Garage is committed to making robots the next breakthrough industry by expanding the range of applications while reducing the technical barriers to entry, including the largest concentration of robots currently found in manufacturing."
The initiative is focusing its efforts in ways that will make the manufacturing community more productive. Key to this objective is the efforts of Southwest Research Institute's experience in both the research and industrial communities. SwRI researchers and engineers see open source software and the ROS-Industrial project as enabling the transition of robotics research to meaningful application in Industry.
"We are pleased to participate in this work, as the benefits of introducing the open source ROS robotics community to industrial challenges will be transformative," said Clay Flannigan, manager of Robotics and Automation Engineering at SwRI. "The objective of this project is aligned with our charter to provide expertise in bringing fundamental research and technology to bear in industrial applications."
Update: The Willow Garage Blog has posted more information on the partnership with Adept, including a short video showing the integration of ROS with the Adept Viper 650 robotic arm.
Tags: Adept Technology, cloud robotics, industrial robotics, John Dulchinos, Robot operating System, robotics, robots, ROS, Steve Cousins, willow garage
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