Global Material Handling System Integrators
 
 

The Customizable Gripper That’s Changing Robotic Handling

 

Soft_Robotics_gripper

Soft Robotics’ modular mGrip P2 UR Kit allows handling of delicate goods that previously required a human touch.

Soft Robotics has recently partnered with Universal Robots (UR) to develop an end of arm tool to keep up with the ever-changing demands of the material handling industry. They have come up with a solution to take the already successful and state-of-the-art gripper and make it modular.

The mGrip P2 UR Kit is specifically designed to be used with the UR collaborative robot and has served various industries. The grippers have been used in sortation and picking operations throughout the food and beverage industry where they were handling raw dough and raw meats. The grippers have also been used, but not limited to, manufacturing and order fulfillment applications.

Specs

Max Grip Force

2.5lbs per finger

Grip Closing Time

88ms

Operating Pressure

0-14 PSI

Grip Opening  Time

166ms

Power

24V req’d for control unit

IP Rating

Designed to IP67

 

mGrip P2 Kit Benefits

The gripper is shipped ready to be mounted to any e-series UR robot. With an innovative design for the actual gripper, there is no need for sensor calibration – the soft material of the gripper conforms to the product being picked. Not only is it plug and play ready, the modular design allows you to easily add or remove the mGrip spacers to widen or narrow the grip from 40mm to 100mm. The kit comes with a Soft Robotics control unit which allows the gripper to cycle 3-4 times per second, so the system can keep up with high-speed demands.

With both the manufacturing and material handling industries facing increasing labor shortages, the UR Robot with the soft gripper allows companies the flexibility to automate even with a delicate product. Especially in the food industry, these robots are the key to helping producers increase productivity and reduce costs in the long run.

Traditional end of arm tools on today’s robots lack the flexibility and dexterity that these soft grippers provide. With the ability to manipulate products of varying size, shape, and weight, these soft grippers eliminate the need for tool changes. They also eliminate the need for vision to identify products, since the grippers will form to the item. These grippers are also very precise and can pick up products that are closely stacked together. The elastomeric polymer material they are made from even allows it to be used in sanitary applications, while also being delicate enough to handle produce and bakery items without crushing or damage.

Given the modularity and how adaptive these soft grippers are, it is easy to see why more and more companies are starting to implement this technology. Whether is it order fulfillment or a plant handling raw produce, these soft grippers are the technology of the future.

 

Author: Adam Kulon

Adam graduated from the University of Toledo with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. He started with Bastian Solutions in January 2018 as a Project Engineer in the Novi, MI, office. Prior to joining the company, he gained manufacturing experience while working for Chrysler as a Production Supervisor. Outside of work, Adam enjoys watching and playing sports.

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