June 6, 2022
Rapid Robotics has announced updates to its Rapid Machine Operator (RMO), an industrial robot that can get up and running in a matter of hours, but also “is the first manufacturing robot that can move between jobs in less time than it takes to make a cup of coffee.” Through the company’s new Smart Setup capability, the RMO can move onto a new job in as little as 60 seconds via built-in computer vision, with no programming or robotics expertise needed.
In addition to the task-switching process, Smart Setup can put an end to work stoppages caused by changes or disruptions to a work environment. While other robots need to be reset by trained specialists, anyone can get an RMO back in action in minutes, Rapid Robptics said.
Through a tablet-based app, one touch can have the RMO’s cameras analyze a workspace, and then the system calculates distances and orientations of parts and surfaces, updating motion paths to deliver a fast and precise way to execute a given task. With an additional tap, the RMO can then start the job.
“Smart Setup is shaping up to be an absolute game-changer for busy high-mix environments like ours,” said Tammy Barras, president of Westec Plastics. “We can’t pay systems integrators to come in every time we want a robot working on a different task. We’d lose more money than we’d save. With Smart Setup, we’ll be able to do everything ourselves, with practically no downtime. That means we’ll spend less, get more work done and bring in more revenue overall.”
Launched in 2020, the RMO arrives “ready to work out of the box, pre-trained to perform hundreds of common machine-tending and warehouse tasks” that include pick-and-place, parts inspection, and gate cutting, among others. It includes all the hardware and software, including a six-axis robotic arm, computer vision system and custom grippers. Each RMO can be “hired” via a $2,100 per month subscription.
“Smart Setup gives the Rapid Machine Operator human-like instincts about its surroundings and its assigned task,” said Jordan Kretchmer, CEO of Rapid Robotics. “It’s so flexible, you can almost think of it as a human colleague. You can drop it into any job it’s trained for, at a moment’s notice. There’s never been anything like it on a factory floor.”
Existing customers will receive Smart Setup along with Rapid’s regular free updates to the RMO’s software and artificial intelligence.
For more details on the system and company, visit the Rapid Robotics website here.