OMRON released a new version of the OMRON Enterprise Manager and a new version of the OMRON Fleet Operations Workspace (FLOW) Core software. The new server and software deliver enhanced fleet management capabilities for OMRON mobile robot customers. In this article we review the product.
OMRON Enterprise Manager
The new OMRON Enterprise Manager 2100 (EM2100) replaces the current EM1100. The OMRON Enterprise Manager is a rack mountable server that is designed as a complete unit, ready for installation in your datacenter or anywhere on your internal production network. The EM connects directly to your corporate network and via a WiFi connection on the network it is able to communicate directly with OMRON LD autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) in your facility.
Here is what is new with the EM2100:
- Faster Processor
- Increased RAM
- Increased (local) storage)
- New LCD Status Display
- Improved Network Adapter
The Omron EM 2100 does not require access to the cloud (or internet). The OMRON EM2100 can manage the operations of up to 100 OMRON LD AMRs. Multiple Enterprise Managers can be deployed for larger fleets.
OMRON FLOW Core
OMRON’s Fleet Operations Workspace (FLOW) Core provides a comprehensive mobile robot and fleet management solution for factory and manufacturing applications. It seamlessly integrates the navigation and safety of OMRON AMRs via fleet management into a single software suite. Fleet Operations Workspace (FLOW) Core provides factory managers a complete mobile robot solution.
FLOW Core offers a number of benefits so factories can optimize their fleet:
- Optimized efficiency through intelligent job assignment, managed motion, and traffic control
- Reduced job execution time through improved navigation and driving algorithms
- Increased flexibility with alternate path navigation and easy goal location programming to quickly respond to factory layout changes
- Displays robot location and status
- Displays job queue
- Prioritizes important jobs
- Selects fastest routes based on human and robot traffic
- Optimizes battery charging
FLOW Core quickly and easily integrates with your factory’s manufacturing execution system (MES) or enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. The integration toolkit provided with FLOW Core connects OMRON’s mobile robot fleet with any MES/ERP system via industry standard RESTful, SQL or MQ APIs.
OMRON’s MobilePlanner remains the control center for FLOW Core. Its user interface has tools for all major autonomous mobile robot activities, such as creating and editing maps, defining goals, setting tasks, managing job priorities, commanding fleets, and optimizing fleet configurations.
A screenshot of the OMRON software for the tablet. (Image courtesy of OMRON)
The MobilePlanner Tablet Edition is a lite user interface designed for viewing and controlling the individual robot or the entire fleet from a mobile device or tablet. View location and status of robots, alerts, job queue, position, battery level, and travel speed in an easy to read color-coded map. The MobilePlanner PC edition provides full configuration and control capabilities for Omron LD mobile robots, Enterprise Manager with map editing and job administrations.
The new MobilePlanner software release includes a new UI refresh to improve look and feel and ease of use. It is also now multi-lingual with support for up to 9 languages and an unlimited number of users. OMRON has changed the licensing model and eliminated the mobile planner license.
New AMR capabilities in FLOW Core
For the software running on an individual OMRON AMR, this release brings a variety of new features. Existing AMRs that are upgraded to the latest version can also take advantage of these new capabilities. Overall, these new features improve the operation of individual AMRs and help them better function in a fleet setting.
New AMR Control Features:
- Dynamic obstacle avoidance – this feature allows the robots to predict the trajectory of moving objects (like humans, fork trucks or other mobile robots) that an individual robot identifies with its sensors. Robot trajectory planning can leverage this information to optimize the path planning around a moving object.
- “Courtesy yielding” to more naturally fall behind moving object rather than compete for right of way or halt
- Driving smoothness improvements that can yield up to a 15% reduction in time to goal. This is also tied to the dynamic obstacle avoidance, and enables the individual robots to avoid the “stop and wait” scenario.
- New cell alignment positioning system software option (improves positional performance without additional hardware).
- Traction control – useful for operating environments where wheel slippage is possible (think wet or oily floors). Enables the robots to better manage robot odometry and reduce localization errors.
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