The Autonomous Industrial Mobile Manipulator (AIMM) of the DLR is focused on fetch and carry operations in partially unstructured environments. In contrast to traditional industrial robots, by combining a manipulator with a mobile platform, the application possibilities of a robotic system can be considerably extended, especially in an industrial context. For instance, thanks to the extended working space of the robot, large components can be machined. Especially for small enterprises, mobility is first and foremost relevant to flexibility.
AIMM consists of a mobile platform and manipulator from KUKA and at DLR has been extended by a gripper, a pan-tilt unit and multiple sensors to allow for perception of the environment and the objects to be manipulated. AIMM may change between different working stations and perform different tasks, for which a specially dedicated robot would be unprofitable. These new application possibilities also pose new challenges on the technology of the robotic system. The robot must be capable of working on unknown terrain and responding to variations of tasks. Furthermore, the system must be easy to operate, since flexibility requires frequent programming of new tasks. Our approach to meet these requirements is to provide AIMM with a high level of autonomy. After all, such a system must find its way in new environments and actively support the user in implementing new tasks. The research for AIMM is focused on perception, planning, and programming towards a fully autonomous complex robotic system but also allowing for simple usability.
Within the EU project TAPAS, AIMM was successfully applied in a real industrial environment to aid the assembly of a rotor. The various tasks which needed to be carried out autonomously included part retrieval from multiple workstations, conveyor handling, part transportation, and delivery of finished parts to the warehouse. Within the European Robotics Challenges EuRoC, five challenger teams from all over Europe are using a newer version of AIMM to carry out various tasks ranging from robot-human logistics for aircraft assembly to maintenance operations in hazardous environments and automotive logistics at a car assembly line. In the EU project RobDREAM, the AIMM concept is applied in order to improve the mobile manipulator's performance concerning the perception, navigation, manipulation and grasping abilities.
 Andreas Dömel, Simon Kriegel, Michael Kaecker, Manuel Brucker, Tim Bodenmüller and Michael Suppa, "Towards Fully Autonomous Mobile Manipulation for Industrial Environments", International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, 2017.
 Andreas Dömel, Simon Kriegel , Manuel Brucker and Michael Suppa. "Autonomous Pick and Place Operations in Industrial Production", In Proceedings of 12th International Conference on Ubiquitous Robots and Ambient Intelligence URAI, Goyang city, Korea, October 2015. Best Video Award. [BibTeX] [PDF] [Video]
 Simon Bogh, Casper Schou, Thomas Ruehr, Yevgen Kogan, Andreas Dömel, Manuel Brucker, Christof Eberst, Riccardo Tornese, Christoph Sprunk, Gian D. Tipaldi, and Trine Hennessy. "Integration and assessment of multiple mobile manipulators in a Real-World industrial production facility", In Proceedings of 41st International Symposium on Robotics ISR/Robotik, pages 1–8. VDE, June 2014.
The Autonomous Industrial Mobile Manipulator (AIMM) consists of a mobile platform and manipulator from KUKA and at DLR has been extended by a gripper, a pan-tilt unit and multiple sensors to allow for perception of the environment and the objects to be manipulated.
DLR (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0).
The Autonomous Industrial Mobile Manipulator (AIMM) performs fetch and carry operations at the Grundfos production site in Denmark for the assembly of rotor cores.
AIMM switches the conveyor belt off in order to pick up the rotor caps at another workstation at Grundfos in Denmark
AIMM drops off the required parts at the assembly station which another robot will use to assemble the rotor core.
AIMM plans and executes a collision-free motion after registering to the workstation utilizing the 3D model autonomously acquired in the setup phase
AIMM performs fetch and carry operations at the Automatica 2014 trade fair as part of the EU project TAPAS.
AIMM delivers parts to another robot which will assemble the rotor cores.