OFF: Service robotics is revolutionizing our lives. In medicine, logistics or industry – there are ever more fields of application for autonomous and flexible robots.
VO Kurt Stegerer, Branch Manager Conrad Electronic SE Regensburg:
„It welcomes our customers just like one of our employees and leads them to the respective department where the customer would like consultation. It supports our employees by guiding the customer and there’s more time for the consultation.”
OFF: Eighty three percent of the German population can imagine having a service robot at home too - a huge growth potential for the sector. Researchers at the University of Bielefeld are developing an intelligent apartment that will independently offer services where they’re needed. At the core of this project is a robot that can learn and react flexibly to new situations.
VO Prof. Dr. Helge Ritter, Coordinator CITEC at Bielefeld University:
“We‘re particularly interested in (developing) the robot’s social skills. Present day robots are rather unemotional and cold and we want the robot to be a companion for people, that can show us something for example, or we can ask it something and it will (be able to) give us an explanation.”
OFF: It will be a while before these robots are available on the market however.
VO Prof. Dr. Alin Abu-Schäfer, Sensor-based Robotic Systems and Intelligent Assistant Systems TUM:
„Of course we all dream of a service robot that will can serve us as a butler or housekeeper. (But) That will probably be the application that will be last to come to market because of the huge price constraints in the private sector.”
OFF: Driverless mobile transport systems are witnessing a big boom. An important detail: they have to be able to “see”. EvoCart and UnitR were developed specifically for hospitals and they navigate using laser scans. These electric vehicles relieve nursing staff from tedious and time-consuming tasks.
Service robotics can offer a lot more though: like the worldwide first inventory management robot, “Tory”, or even an entire goods-to-person system called “Carry Pick” for the logistics sector.
Optimal quality and safety are vital in the medical sector too. Cyberknife’s combination of mobile robot and digital imaging enables a very gentle treatment in the battle against tumors.
VO Prof. Dr. med Alexander Muacevic, Radiosurgeon, Neurosurgeon Cyberknife:
“Robotics play a big role in radiosurgery therapy with the Cyberknife because it allows for a certain dynamic. The robot can adapt dynamically to the movement of the tumor in the body. That ’s not possible with the conventional, static systems.”
And it’s not just surgery that benefits from service robotics; in the field of neuro-rehabilitation, “ROREAS” assists stroke patients during their walking exercises. Both the patient’s mobility and sense of orientation are thus supported.
Service robotics is at the brink of making our everyday lives easier. Automatica is the first trade fair, worldwide to offer this future technology a platform from June 21st to 24th, 2016 in Munich.
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