TRUMPF is presenting a laser processing system with artificial intelligence (AI) that allows it to be operated intuitively using voice commands at the Laser World of Photonics 2019 trade show this week in Munich, Germany. Equipped with a marking laser, the system demonstrates the potential benefits of AI in laser processing, and how it takes automation to the next level.
“With AI, production processes that use our lasers will become even more efficient, easier to operate and more adaptable,” said Christian Schmitz, CEO, Laser Technology at TRUMPF. The demonstration will show how the operator can instruct the machine to carry out actions such as ‘open/close the door’, ‘start the marking process,’ or ask, ‘how many products have been marked today,’ simply by speaking into a microphone. The laser system responds immediately and carries out the instruction.
There are many advantages of voice control, such as making it easier for inexperienced users to operate the machine because they don’t have to learn how to navigate the multi-layered menu structure when entering instructions manually via the software interface. It also saves time, because operators have their hands free to prepare the next part for processing or remove a finished part from the machine. Moreover, by providing barrier-free access, voice control allows handicapped persons to operate the machine.
As the next stage in this project, the TRUMPF development engineers intend to further simplify operation of the marking laser system. At present, the operator has to tell the machine what part has been loaded so that it can start the appropriate marking program. In the future, advanced sensor systems and image recognition software will enable the machine to identify the part and select the necessary program on its own. It’s not even necessary to load the part in a specific orientation—the machine is so intelligent that it can automatically position the laser at the correct angle before starting the marking process.
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