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Robotic End Effector Deliver 6D Positional Deviations

The Bosch Rexroth Smart Flex Effector is a first of its kind sensor-based compensation module with independent kinematics in six degrees of freedom. The Smart Flex Effector provides tactile sense of touch feedback to the robot application, essentially emulating the abilities of a human hand. A digital twin of the robotic operation can also be created from the multitudes of real-time data available from the device, providing complete process transparency.

It lends itself to complex handling applications, joining operations with micron-level tolerances, robotic teaching, performing in-process measurement, and providing movement flexibility that was previously unobtainable. The Smart Flex Effector solves a wide array of challenges that have troubled integrators for years.

The Smart Flex Effector is designed to correct processes with great complexity and tight tolerances, such as in the case of positional deviations between the tool and the work pieces or in complex joining processes with minimal tolerances. And, thanks to the 6D position recording, the robotic control system can read the coordinates for gripping and placing points directly. Repeated learning during operation is possible in an automated manner.

Even parts made of glass or other fragile materials can be handled. The compensation module also can be actively moved into the zero position and electromechanically locked for fast transfer runs.

Thanks to a kinematics system that works independently in six degrees of freedom, the tactile all-rounder with sensitive touch precisely records the position of the work piece and passes the information to the robot control unit for active compensation purposes.

The Smart Flex Effector is designed for handling loads of up to 6 kg. For machine manufacturers and users, it opens up a wide range of new applications which were difficult or not possible to realize with previous equipment such as passive compensation units, force torque sensors and visual systems. The applications range from process automation and quality monitoring to teaching and the controlled handling of objects.

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