The customer has two types of Autonomous Mobile Robots: MiRs and Agiloxs. While both are happy to navigate around each other, meeting in a narrow alley whilst driving in opposite direction would cause traffic jams as there wouldn’t be enough space to manoeuvre around.
This problem required implementing a traffic management system to stop one AMR type from driving into tight spaces if they were already occupied by other vehicles.
The Traffic Management system was developed as a module to AMRConnect™, which was already deployed to facilitate communication between conveyor PLCs and iAM-Cs. AMRConnect™ is a C# application developed by iconsys for the purpose of connecting AMRs with other devices.
The software was already obtaining data from iAM-Cs. In addition, it was extended to receive and send REST API requests from Agilox vehicles. A logic module to control traffic was developed such that if one type of AMR was in a zone, it would block the other from entry. Traffic control works even if the robots are driven in manual which prevents human error and damage to equipment.
As a solution based purely on software, adding additional zones will be simply in the future – a key aspect given the customer is expecting to further expand their AMR Fleet, and integrate additional AMR technologies in the future.
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