“The robot is increasingly becoming a standard product built into the machine,” says Brandstetter. This brings many advantages to mechanical engineers. What’s most noticeable is that the number of hardware components decreases significantly. The result: lower machine environmental footprint and space requirements – as well as costs.
Another big advantage is greater clarity in the user interface. “If I have two platforms, one for robotics and one for machine automation, I also have two different user interfaces, which is not particularly convenient,” Brandstetter says. “Integration always takes a lot of effort,” says the product manager. B&R counters this with a unified user interface that allows the machine manufacturer to operate everything on the same platform: controls, different variants of mobile panels and classic automation panels – the main application area of integrated robotics.
Sebastian Brandstetter has an additional point up his sleeve for integrated machine control and is looking towards engineering. If there are two platforms, engineers have to work with two development tools, which does not make machine development easier. But if everything is integrated, you only need one tool for the entire device – Automation Studio.
In terms of safety, both machine builders and their customers can benefit from an integrated system if there is only one safety controller for the entire machine, including the robot. Regarding the safety aspect, Brandstetter explains: “Our system is divided into gray and yellow. Robot planning takes place in the gray world. In the yellow world – the components are actually yellow – safety technology is integrated, which also includes monitoring the entire machine including the robots. For example, security doors that are supposed to open only in certain situations are monitored here.
“Total coffee aficionado. Travel buff. Music ninja. Bacon nerd. Beeraholic.”