This pilot will develop enhanced capabilities for robotic systems that are interoperable and extend their capabilities to include sustainability analytics and energy optimization functionalities.
During the past few years, research and development has focused a lot on the reduction of energy consumption and/or emissions. These topics do not only concern one single production component vendor. They affect the whole value chain and lifecycle including different parties (e.g., affecting carbon footprint calculation of a product). This pinpoints the need for exchanging information in this field along the lifecycle and over company barriers based on a vertical and horizontal integration. To this end, standardized, industrial DTs (e.g., via AAS) are perfect enablers.
Moreover, the exploitation of the collected information requires not only a production resource and product mapping, but greater detail with respect to the actual production process itself, i.e., enabling the calculation of the energy equivalent or carbon footprint for one single operation; for example, for a spot-welding process by means of a pneumatic or alternatively electric driven gun or for a roller hemming process by using different robot sizes. All this information is necessary to contribute to the LCA/eco balancing of produced products. The calculation must be based on standardized methodologies for the corresponding KPIs. A module with such capabilities would help to assess and offer valuable information, insights and tools to both production plant developers/programmers and the end users.
More specifically, such a detailed approach will facilitate decision support for the selection of the appropriate modules for the development of one or more robotic systems for a given task, such as selecting the appropriate combination of robots and accordingly mounted tools considering robot sizes and payloads as well as available technology systems. Further, virtual commissioning functionalities based on energy-optimized production layout design will be utilized to further support end user decisions towards more sustainable production schemes