WALTHAM, Mass. – Veo Robotics, which develops systems that allow for safer human interaction with industrial robots, this week launched its FreeMove system. The safety-ratable, production-ready vision system “gives manufacturing engineers the freedom to combine the strength, precision, and speed of standard industrial robots with the ingenuity, judgment, and dexterity of humans,” the company said in a blog post announcing the product.
Veo said the system can be used with standard industrial robots from major manufacturers, with payloads up to hundreds of kilograms and that move many meters per second. The company said in order to make these robots collaborative, safety “has been Veo’s paramount focus since its founding.”
The system is compliant with ISO 13849, meets the requirements of PL=d, structure category 3, and includes:
- FreeMove Sensors: customized, 3D time-of-flight sensors that are mounted on the workcell periphery to cover the volume of the safeguarded space.
- FreeMove Engine: A high-performance, dual-channel architecture computing platform that runs fail-safe software that processes image data from the sensors and implements Speed & Separation Monitoring (per ISO 15066).
- FreeMove Studio: A software suite for self-service configuration and real-time visualization of the sensors and FreeMove Engine data.
Veo, an RBR50 2019 honoree, said it has been working with third-party certification agencies through the development process, and will submit FreeMove for certification in early 2020, with final certification expected by the end of 2020. Earlier this year, the company launched its FreeMove Application Development Kit, a version that runs on non-safety-ratable hardware that must be used with redundant safety systems for development purposes. Veo said the resulting designs can be implemented in production with the full Veo FreeMove system.
Veo said it built the FreeMove system to provide manufacturers with the ability to be more responsive and flexible with their automation processes. “By making it possible for standard industrial robots to respond safely to nearby humans, Veo FreeMove plays to the strengths of both humans and robots,” the company said in its announcement. “Doing so increases worker productivity, improves ergonomics, and reduces engineering and capital equipment costs.” Veo said these changes can unlock new methods production, reduce downtime, and provide quicker implementation and greater manufacturing flexibility.