As the demand for Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR’s) and Automated Guided Vehicles (AGV’s) increases, new standards are being put in place to govern the safe and reliable operation of these devices. In many cases manufacturers are turning to these “free range” robots and vehicles rather than dedicating floor space to traditional material handling methods.
The new standard released by The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), defines the types of objects that might be encountered during the operation of an Autonomous Mobile Robot (AMR) or Automatic Guided Vehicle (AGV).
Developed by ASTM’s committee on robotics, automation, and autonomous systems, the new standard documents a list of common terms that describe these objects, and provides a common language for the use of both operators and manufacturers of this equipment.
Designated F3588 – Released November 9, 2022, provides specifications for a set of reference objects to act as obstacles or infrastructure for testing the capabilities of A-UGVs. The objects represent those common in many manufacturing environments. Additionally, the committee surveyed both end users and manufacturers to assemble a list of items that might be encountered by an autonomous, unmanned robot.
Gray Solutions took the opportunity to talk with Dean Elkins, Senior Director, Advanced Automation, for additional insight into what this standard means for Gray Solutions. “While robots and vehicles are programmed to travel through factories, Gray Solutions pays very close attention to standards put forth by organizations such as ASTM. In the case of both AMR’s and AGV’s the F45 Committee of ASTM has developed the F3588 Standard which deals with how these devices will navigated around or deal with objects such as Pallets, Steps, other AGV’s or AMR’s, Poles, Furniture or other objects found in the everyday factory. With operational safety viewed as paramount, Gray Solutions maintains the highest level of subject matter expertise to insure the successful deployment of these types of devices.”