Title: Interactive programming of industrial robots for edge tracing using a virtual reality gaming environment

Authors: S. Michas; E. Matsas; G-C. Vosniakos

Addresses: National Technical University of Athens, School of Mechanical Engineering, Iroon Polytehneiou 9, 15780 Athens, Greece ' National Technical University of Athens, School of Mechanical Engineering, Iroon Polytehneiou 9, 15780 Athens, Greece ' National Technical University of Athens, School of Mechanical Engineering, Iroon Polytehneiou 9, 15780 Athens, Greece

Abstract: This paper presents the methodology and development tools employed to specify the path of an industrial robot in a virtual environment (VE) that is typically used for game development. Initially, the cell and the robot are designed and then imported into the VE, followed by the development of the kinematic chain of the robot. Forward and inverse kinematics analysis of the robot is accomplished, implemented in the C# programming language and embedded into the VE vie inbuilt functionality. The end-effector path consists of edges to be traced, such as in welding, deburring, water jet machining, etc. The path is planned in the VE using the teaching or lead-through paradigm, where instead of a teaching pendant the controller of a computer game console is used in connection with visual aids augmenting the VE to help the programmer. The robot path is, then, transcribed in the real robot, the pertinent code being derived automatically within the VE. The method was applied to a 6-axis industrial robot, the obtained V+ program was run on the real robotic cell and accuracy attained was documented proving that user friendly VR interfaces deriving from the gaming world can provide an efficient and effective robot programming paradigm.

Keywords: industrial robot; robotic manufacturing cell; virtual reality; interactive path planning; virtual manufacturing; robot kinematics; game development.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMMS.2017.087548

International Journal of Mechatronics and Manufacturing Systems, 2017 Vol.10 No.3, pp.237 - 259

Received: 05 Nov 2016
Accepted: 11 Feb 2017

Published online: 12 Oct 2017 *

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