Robotic manipulation for the shoe-packaging process
This paper presents the integration of a robotic system in a human-centered environment, as it can be found in the shoe manufacturing industry. Fashion footwear is nowadays mainly handcrafted due to the big amount of small production tasks. Therefore, the introduction of intel- ligent robotic systems in this industry may contribute to automate and improve the manual production steps, such us polishing, cleaning, packaging, and visual inspection. Due to the high complexity of the manual tasks in shoe produc- tion, cooperative robotic systems (which can work in colla- boration with humans) are required. Thus, the focus of the robot lays on grasping, collision detection, and avoidance, as well as on considering the human intervention to super- vise the work being performed. For this research, the robot has been equipped with a Kinect camera and a wrist force/ torque sensor so that it is able to detect human interaction and the dynamic environment in order to modify the robotís behavior. To illustrate the applicability of the proposed app- roach, this work presents the experimental results obtained for two actual platforms, which are located at different research laboratories, that share similarities in their mor- phology, sensor equipment and actuation system.