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Top 10 Technologies from IMTS 2016: Part 2

Microsoft's virtual reality in the plant, self-driving vehicles for material handling, and a 3D printed house among the Top 5 from IMTS 2016.

IMTS 2016 has come to a close, and after the final tally the 31st edition of the show was the third largest in history. More than 115,000 people registered for the event, and it was the highest number of exhibitors ever, with 2,400+ taking up more than 1.3 million square feet of floor space.

Here is part two of IEN’s top ten (or top five, if you will) from IMTS 2016. Click here to watch part one

5. Feeling Holo-Good

A number of vendors, including ABB and Radix, were demonstrating how Microsoft’s HoloLens device could compliment their machine vision, robotics and work cell products.

Applications of the 3D virtual reality headset included optimizing plant or work cell layout by using HoloLens to virtually move equipment, adjust production lines or assess quality assurance practices. 

4. MotoSight 3D CanonVision from Yaskawa Motoman

MotoSight 3D CanonVision is Yaskawa Motoman’s new hardware/software solution that uses a single 3D machine vision head to quickly and easily recognize and pick parts that are randomly placed in bins. 3D CAD matching provides simplified, accurate part registration, allowing even complicated parts to be identified.

MotoSight 3D CanonVision utilizes a high-performance Canon camera, which uses projected light patterns to locate the parts, and single-step recognition reduces the need for multiple cameras.

3. Hooking Up

In meeting with software providers like AUTODESK, Exact and the Smartware Group, as well as robotics companies like KUKA, ABB and Siemens, it was clear that plant floor connectivity developments are not slowing down.

What’s interesting is that those closely associated with these technologies are focused on providing greater flexibility in matching capabilities with immediate needs. This translates to more options when industrial users are implementing technologies like cloud-based networking, predictive data analysis or enterprise-wide software platforms.

2. OTTO Motors Self-Driving Vehicles

OTTO Motors launched in April 2016 with a line of self-driving vehicles designed exclusively for material transport.

Due to rapid adoption by customers like GE and John Deere, the company says it will have more self-driving vehicles (SDVs) inside manufacturing and distribution facilities by the end of the year than Google will have on outdoor roads.

1. ORNL Steals the Spotlight

Oak Ridge National Laboratory stole the spotlight as it hosted a 3D printed Jeep, Shelby Cobra, and an entire house, well maybe just what seemed to be a really-structurally sound 3D-printed trailer home. 

A part of ORNL’s Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy (AMIE) project that is trying to change the way we think about generating, storing, and using electrical power. The habitat was a collaboration with architectural firm SOM and built to share energy wirelessly with a 3D printed car – that rugged looking thing out front. It took 225 hours to print and nearly 13,500 lbs of material to print.

This is IEN Now with Jeff Reinke, Anna Wells, and David Mantey.

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