The handling of soft materials with the involvement of robots remains limited. The control systems of the robot need to be very sensitive, accurate and fast to prevent unwanted irreversible deformations and damages. Further research is needed in order to develop handling devices which are not pre-programmed for one specific task, but are intelligent and universally dexterous.
Future robots will have to be able to handle soft products while controlling their level of deformation, e.g. in situations where the objects are being manipulated with multiple contact points. Low-cost robots are essential. New handling technologies for flexible materials will lead to disruptive innovations in textile, paper and food processing, and will support a widespread implementation, in particular by SMEs.Scope:
In order to automate production processes involving soft and flexible materials, Proposals need to cover both of the following areas:
Activities should start at TRL 4 and achieve TRL 6 at the end of the project.
The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU between EUR 6 and 8 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.Expected Impact:
Relevant indicators and metrics, with baseline values, should be clearly stated in the proposal.Cross-cutting Priorities: