ANYbotics, the Swiss robotics company, is launching a new end-to-end robotic inspection solution for operators of energy and industrial processing plants
ANYbotics’ new fully autonomous four-legged robot ANYmal and it’s inspection analytics software provide a scalable solution to automate routine condition monitoring of equipment and infrastructure. The company has started onboarding early customers to bring robotic inspection into their facilities and is rolling out installations later this year.
In a condition monitoring process, inspection data is collected and analyzed, and provides the insights to trigger corrective actions to optimize operational uptime, performance, and quality. Even with IoT devices, full inspection coverage cannot be reached, as fixed-installed sensors will at some point stop scaling — both with regards to installation efforts and device cost. For this reason, plant operators manually perform routine inspection rounds multiple times a day, often in unpleasant or potentially hazardous settings.
Fortunately, robotics technology has matured in recent years to provide an automated and fully digital inspection solution.
“We have different inspection tours in our plant — some take place daily, some even several times a day, to ensure the plant’s condition. We intend to increase the inspection quality through automated documentation without installing additional sensors on-site,” said Felix Volkmann, Asset Manager, BASF.
Walking robots represent a unique alternative to reliably navigate these facilities. Modern four-legged vehicles can traverse rugged terrain that is built for humans. However, mobility is not the only challenge. A robotic inspection solution must work autonomously and provide the sensors and intelligence to detect any irregularities with the equipment or infrastructure.
ANYbotics is launching its first certified commercial product as part of its integrated end-to-end robotic inspection solution. The new ANYmal D legged robot provides users an autonomous system with advanced condition monitoring capabilities. Out of the box, the robot provides large-scale autonomy, including obstacle avoidance and self-charging via a docking station for routine inspection tasks without human interaction.
“Without a doubt, the collaboration with ANYbotics got my team thinking differently about maintenance and inspection. We see significant potential for an autonomous mobile robot to standardize our protocols and improve the quality of the data we’re collecting," Rolf Claude, Head Engineering Services – RAM/LCC, Stadler Services AG.
ANYbotics has been building up the resources, tools, and support services to enable successful robot commissioning and onboarding. Acting as a single point-of-contact, ANYbotics' experts closely work with the customer in evaluating the tasks to be automated and prepare the organization for the deployment of autonomous mobile inspection robots. The team checks the feasibility and impact in simulations, on-site demonstrations, and long-term pilot deployments. Once the implementation roadmap is established, the team trains and supports the customer in commissioning and scaling the system throughout their facilities.
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