Title: Robot-assisted painting system for bolt-nut pairs

Authors: Ran Zhao; Kaiqi Yan; Otto Jan Bakker; Svetan M. Ratchev

Addresses: Advanced Manufacturing Technology Research Group, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, NG7 2RD, UK ' Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, NG9 2RD, UK ' School of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK ' Advanced Manufacturing Technology Research Group, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, NG7 2RD, UK

Abstract: Bolt-nut pairs painting of aerostructures, in particular legacy products, relies heavily on the skill or rather craftsmanship of the human operator. This process is time-consuming while automated operations with industrial robots can be a more efficient solution. This paper describes the development of such an automated bolt-nut pair painting system for a small parts assembly line. In this paper, a low-cost and flexible solution for automated bolt-nut pair painting using a painting dabber and machine vision system is proposed. A Sense 2 camera is used to capture the 3D model of the parts, and an ABB industrial robot YuMi is programmed to implement the painting automatically. A specific nozzle for the dabber is designed to apply paint on bolt-nut pairs. The results shows that the location of every bolt-nut pair is found successfully, and the accuracy of the normal vectors is enough for robot-assisted painting work.

Keywords: automated bolt-nut painting; machine vision system; industrial robotics; offline programming.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMMS.2020.108311

International Journal of Mechatronics and Manufacturing Systems, 2020 Vol.13 No.1, pp.28 - 38

Received: 26 May 2019
Accepted: 25 Sep 2019

Published online: 04 Jul 2020 *

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