Robotic painting: mimicking human applicators
Reseachers now showed a generic robot arm-supported approach to painting engineering substrates using a roller with a constant force at an accurate joint step, while retaining compliance and thus safety. They optimised the robot design such that it is able to coat the substrate using a roller with a performance equivalent to that of a human applicator. To achieve this, the researchers optimised the force, frequency of adjustment, and position control parameters of robotic design. A framework for autonomous coating is available at https://github.com/duyayun/Vision-and-force-control-automonous-painting-with-rollers; users are only required to provide the boundary coordinates of surfaces to be coated.
Hazardous area coating
The researchers found that robotically- and human-painted panels showed similar trends in dry film thickness, coating hardness, flexibility, impact resistance, and microscopic properties. Colour profile analysis of the coated panels showed non-significant difference in colour scheme and is acceptable for architectural paints. Overall, this work shows the potential of robot-assisted coating strategy using roller applicator. This could be a viable option for hazardous area coating, high-altitude architectural paints, germs sanitisation, and accelerated household applications.
The study has been publische in Journal of Coatings Technology and Research, Volume 20, Issue 4, July 2023.