Mar 17, 2022

Ford uses mobile robots to operate 3D printers without human help

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, robotics/AI

Engineers at Ford’s Advanced Manufacturing Center have tasked the innovative robot on wheels – called Javier – with operating the 3D printers completely on its own. The autonomous process enables the 3D printer to run continuously with no human interaction needed, increasing throughput and reducing the cost of custom-printed products.

Ford says Javier is always on time, very precise in its movements, mostly spends its day doing nothing but 3D printing, only taking a “short break” to recharge the batteries. The company has achieved great accuracy with Javier, using its feedback to significantly reduce margins of error. The method can also be applied to a vast array of robots already working at the company to increase efficiency and reduce cost.

Ford has filed several patents for the technology in its drive to innovate. Javier can communicate with Ford’s 3D printer, something that isn’t necessarily as easy to pull off as it sounds. The robot does not require the use of a camera vision system to “see.”

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