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Publication - Mr Michael Elkington

    Collaborative Human-Robotic layup


    Elkington, M, Ward, C, Kirby, A, Libby, M & Gandhi, N, 2017, ‘Collaborative Human-Robotic layup’. in: Composites Advanced Manufacturing Exposition 2017., Orlando Florida


    Manufacturing of high quality composite products generally takes one of two forms; either entirely manual hand layup, or entirely automated tape laying. In this work the first steps are taken towards a hybrid human-robot collaboration based process. This approach has been successfully used in many other industries with the goal of combining the mechanical capabilities of a robotic system with the cognition and awareness of a human worker. In this study three composite layups are completed using a combination of manual and automated processes. The conclusion is that the robot can offer benefits in some areas of layup but the potential time savings using this particular approach may be only be modest. Further works are outlined which aim towards utilizing the other benefits that collaboration would could offer such as improved quality, reduced need for vacuum consolidation and reduced worker fatigue.

    Full details in the University publications repository