University of Modena and Reggio Emilia is an Italian University organized on a ”site network” model embracing the cities of Modena and Reggio Emilia, in close cooperation with surrounding economical clusters (more than 300 companies, most of them in the area of mechatronics, logistic and automotive in one of the richest economic areas in Italy).
It participates in the ECHORD project via the Automation Robotics and Systems Control (ARSControl) Group. The mission of the ARSControl group is the design of software architectures for automation, the analysis of production lines and the control of complex robotic system, such as groups of mobile robots, haptic interfaces and teleoperation systems. The ARSControl Group is a member of the European Robotics Network (EURON). It participated and coordinated several technical applied research projects directly funded by private companies, especially in the area of industrial robotics and mobile robotics for industrial applications. Furthermore, it participated in nationally funded projects such as OASYS (open source software for industrial automation and distributed systems, 2003-2005) and MOOM (object-oriented methods for modeling mechatronic systems, 2005-2007) which dealt with the analysis and design of software architectures for Automation and Distributed Systems.
What motivates us
In the academic world, problems are often considered in a strict scientific point of view and the techniques developed for solving them can seldom be applied in an industrial application. The result is that very elegant techniques are available in the literature but very unsophisticated approaches are being used in the industrial world. We are participating in the ECHORD project for the purpose of solving a complex problem, i.e. traffic control of a fleet of AGVs moving in a mixed warehouse, considering all its practical aspects and its inclusion in a flexible manufacturing system. We expect to show that modern control techniques can be applied to real industrial systems, increasing their efficiency and flexibility. For facing this kind of challenge, it is necessary to cooperate with a company producing AGV systems and ECHORD has provided the perfect framework for setting up this kind of collaboration.