Please be advised that a New Work Item Proposal has been loaded to the BSI Standards Development Portal for comment.
Any comments received will be submitted to the national committee AMT/10 “Robotics ” for consideration when deciding the UK response to the associated Standards Development Organisation.
Proposal: Robotics — Autonomous mobile robots for industrial environments — Communications and interoperability
Comment period end date: 02/06/2023
This standard specifies communication protocols enabling interoperability among industrial autonomous mobile robot (AMR) systems produced by different vendors.
This standard covers AMRs, other aspects of AMR systems such as AMR fleet manager equipment, and other enterprise resources that would communicate with the AMRs in an industrial environment.
• Safety-related requirements for AMR systems
• Mobile machines operating on public roads
This standard will enable organizations to better realize the promise of warehouse and factory automation by deploying autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) and other automation and collaborative equipment from different vendors so that they can work together in the same environment.
This standard will allow AMRs from different vendors to share information about their location, speed, direction, health, tasking, availability and other performance characteristics with other similar machines in an industrial environment to help them complete their missions in a shared environment more effectively. Furthermore, the communication protocols specified in this standard will allow human agents to provide a similar set of information (through the use of external mobile devices) so that their work can be orchestrated alongside robots.
The industrial market would benefit from an internationally-recognized communications protocol for AMR systems of different vendors operating in a shared environment. Currently, there is no international standard specifying such communications protocol(s). While there have been efforts to develop national or regional protocols, including the proposed source document, national or regional solutions will not address the problem as effectively as a truly global standard would. An ISO standard on this topic will be beneficial.
PROBLEM SOLVED BY THIS PROPOSAL
The lack of interoperability of automated, autonomous, or driverless mobile machines in a shared space, is becoming an industrial user need. Many leading industrial users of mobile robots have been asking for an interoperability standard for years. In the United States, an increasing number of industrial mobile robot users and manufacturers have adopted the proposed draft interoperability standard to allow robots to work in the same space without interfering with each other.
One common example of the problems experienced by users is that AMRs from different vendors can block one another’s path, and without common communications, they are not able to solve this navigational problem without human intervention. This negatively impacts the AMRs’ availability and therefore the efficiency of the operation. As another example, in some facilities with multiple levels, AMRs from different vendors cannot share elevators; a specific elevator must be set aside for dedicated use by each different vendor. (For more examples and discussion, see this article.)
VALUE TO STANDARDS USERS
End-users of industrial AMRs will benefit from a standardized communications protocol among AMRs from different vendors. It will improve the availability of AMRs in the shared working environment by reducing instances of AMRs interfering with each other’s path or path planning. As such, this standard will help improve efficiency of AMR systems, increase competition in the market and support innovation.
If you have any comment or need more information, please contact Sami Ortiz at [email protected]