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A TOOL TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY IN LARGE SCALE MANUFACTURING

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000125632D
Original Publication Date: 2002-Sep-25
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jun-09
Document File: 6 page(s) / 198K

Publishing Venue

National Institute of Standards and Technology

Related People

Roger Bostelman: INVENTOR [+4]

Abstract

NIST is working directly with industry to improve repair and conversion operations of ships in dry dock. This work allows transfer of technology to construction and other industries requiring worker-access to large, external surfaces with minimum footprint and maximum system rigidity and control, while augmenting conventional suspended-scaffold systems and moving toward more autonomous large-scale manufacturing applications such as building construction.

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Proceedings of the 19th International Symposium on Automation and Robotics in Construction (ISARC 2002) Gaithersburg, Maryland, September 23-25, 2002.

A TOOL TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY IN LARGE SCALE MANUFACTURING

Roger Bostelman, Will Shackleford, Fred Proctor and James Albus

   Intelligent Systems Division Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory

Alan Lytle

Materials and Construction Research Division Building and Fire Research Laboratory

National Institute of Standards and Technology1 100 Bureau Drive, MS-8230 Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899-8230 roger.bostelman@nist.gov , 301-975-3426

ABSTRACT: NIST is working directly with industry to improve repair and conversion operations of ships in dry dock. This work allows transfer of technology to construction and other industries requiring worker-access to large, external surfaces with minimum footprint and maximum system rigidity and control, while augmenting conventional suspended-scaffold systems and moving toward more autonomous large-scale manufacturing applications such as building construction.

KEYWORDS: worker access, ship repair, construction, robotics, cable controlled, large-scale manufacturing

1.INTRODUCTION

The Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has teamed with Atlantic Marine, Inc. in Mobile, Alabama to study efficient methods to repair ships in dry dock or along a pier. This project, called Knowledge- based Modular Repair [1, 2] is under the auspices of the Navy National Shipbuilding Research Program Advanced Shipbuilding Enterprise Initiative, where worker-, equipment-, and material access to external ship surfaces was determined to be a key focus area. The concept developed in this project is called the "Flying Carpet" and combines two main technologies: the NIST RoboCrane [3] and commercially

available suspended scaffolding to produce an effective concept for worker access to ships, submarines, buildings, and other large objects.

  The NIST Intelligent Systems Division developed the RoboCrane cable-controlled manipulator over several years [3, 4, 5, 6], during a project for the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) that studied crane suspended load control. Since the DARPA project, NIST has expanded RoboCrane technology into a viable solution to address large-scale manufacturing and many other challenges [7]. The RoboCrane applies the Stewart-platform parallel-link manipulator technology to a reconfigurable, cable-driven system. While RoboCrane can lift large, heavy and awkward loads, its stability and

1No approval or endorsement of any commercial product by the National Institute of Standards and Technology is intended or implied. Certain commercial equipment, instruments, or materials are identified in this report in order to facilitate understanding. Such identification does not imply recommendation or endorsement by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, nor does it imply that the materials...