With the help of our MDC program, which has been continuously developing since 2006, we developed a unique design for a Hungarian manufacturing company (automotive) where we already used RFID technology.
As a starting point, the task was to identify the material transported on vehicles leaving the warehouse and to transmit this data to the company management system for computerized accounting. We placed a tag emitting radio signals on top of the cars, and our system can localize them within the building with an accuracy of 50 cm. With this, we were able to determine the exact position of the given stack. We are currently working on an application where this 50 cm accuracy needs to be improved because a transport cart is 40 cm wide, and an AGV transports three coaches simultaneously.
We use infrared technology to achieve an accuracy of 40 cm, which is why cameras have been installed in the dedicated area. With the help of infrared beacons on the tags placed on top of the carts, we can achieve an accuracy of 3-4 cm in space and determine in which storage area the 40 cm long, 1-1.5 m wide carts are stored.
Since the AGVs transport three vehicles at the same time, and there can be different variations in the composition of the vehicles that the warehouse workers have placed in a dedicated area, it is necessary to precisely know the order of the vehicles since the AGV plans the route based on the contents of the cars.
In a production company, the primary task is for the automatic system to deliver the materials to the correct position in FIFO order, but this is only possible if the AGVs receive accurate information.
Suppose a customer needs production support due to quality assurance requirements. In that case, the MDC software can be customized for this, or if simple, smaller-volume inventories are required, it can be easily converted. Antra ID Kft. has already developed a solution focusing on cooperation between humans and robots.
This is an exciting application since the material handling robot always knows which route it takes to transport the shelf or pallet loaded with the given products, so in the area where the robot works, our system is not needed in principle because the machine knows what and where it is. However, suppose there is also a person working in this area who, for example, takes something to or from the location area and skips the necessary accounting steps. In that case, this disrupts the robot’s automatic delivery system. Antra ID has developed a solution supported by a unique positioning system. The purpose is that if a pallet or transport cart is manually transported to a specific point and deposited there, the system automatically registers this. The automatic transport system indicates the need for the transport of this item. The robot then picks up this stack or cart and “maps” the target area to see where there is free space for its storage. The process is therefore started by a person – simply by placing the stack or cart in the right place – and on the other side, the Antra ID software of the robot control system indicates where there is empty storage space.
So here we are talking about the combination of machine and human-controlled processes.