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Robotic Loin Cutting

: Lay, N.

McGinnis, L.F.; Ahmad, M.M.; Sullivan, W.G. ; Georgia Institute of Technology, Manufacturing Research Center, Atlanta:
Flexible Automation and Intelligent Manufacturing 1996. Proceedings of the Sixth International FAIM Conference
New York, USA; Wallingford, UK: Begell House, 1996
ISBN: 1-56700-067-3
International Conference on Flexible Automation and Intelligent Manufacturing (FAIM) <6, 1996, Atlanta/Ga.>
Fraunhofer IPA ()
Fleischschneideprozeß; Fleischwirtschaft; Roboter; Schneiden; sensor

The increasing demand for meat products, the high quality standards and work environments with bad ergonomic and climatic conditions in the meat processing industry require the use of new technologies. A new concepts for the automatic boning of loins was developed at the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering (IPA) in Stuttgart in cooperation with the Swedish Meat Research Institute in Kävlinge. The main topic was the generation of a cutting path through the loin. The developed solution concept provides three CCD-cameras, which record grey-scale-images in three orthogonal levels. On the basis of the analysis of these grey-scale-images cutting paths are roughly calculated. An industrial robot leads a robot-suitable oscillating knife along these cutting paths though the loin. Sensors which are integrated in the cutting path while cutting. In the case of a possible touching of the bones a fuzzy control regulates separate final controlling elements, which then perform a compens ating movement with the knife. The generated cutting paths guarantee that the robot can seperate meat from bones in the optimal way for each loin. A virtual prototype was designed to examine the interplay of all functions and the evaluation and optimisation of the solution concept. This three dimensional simulation of the system gives the opportunity to examine functionality and suitability of the system before it is actually realised. Proceeding like this means alterations can be made easily at an early planning stage and resulting costs can be reduced. The three dimensional simulation gives the observer an intuitive impression of the planned system so that he can examine every single detail if needed.