Solution to last month’s coffee time challenge
Last month we set you the challenge to come up with a method of monitoring human assembling without being excessively intrusive or draconian. The system should advise workers if they have made a mistake and help them put it right
The best solution we have come across is called 'assyControl' developed by Soft2Tec. It uses ultrasonic tracking of the operator hands. Its origin comes of out of the medical field where it is used to monitors the movement of human joints. This information is then used to diagnose multiple sclerosis and other neurological diseases.
An associated company, Science and Motion Sports has developed the technology into the very successful "SAM PuttLab" system. This analyses 28 of the most important parameters in a golf stroke and displays the results in a graphic format to help players improve their game.
The way it works in the manufacturing assembly environment is to have operators wear sender units called markers. These indicate the positions of the middle finger to a 3D tracking system overhead. Accurate to 0.1mm, the system is connected to a control system that optionally confirms with light or sound signals, while incorrect movements are reported, optically or acoustically, and are shown to the user on a PC monitor.
Uncritical errors can be corrected while critical errors lead to the rejection of the assembled parts. The employee confirms the report by touch screen monitor and continues work. The system is highly portable, and can be commissioned anywhere, and then taken down and packed up and used somewhere else.
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