IKEA Furniture Assembly
Broadly defined, the goal of this project is to autonomously assemble IKEA furniture using a team of robots. Much of our work takes place on our four KUKA youBots. In the long term, the vision is for the robot(s) to open the box, remove the furniture, and either follow the directions or otherwise execute a series of steps resulting in the complete assembly of the furniture kit. Major robotics challenges include knowledge representation and understanding, planning with physical and geometric constraints, understanding function from form, dexterous control of parts during attachment operations, use of tools, multi-robot coordination, and interaction with humans. The current implementation of the system is IkeaBot.
Although IKEA furniture is most often assembled in a home setting, many of these skills apply equally well to problems in manufacturing automation. We are therefore exploring applications of these technologies in factory settings as well.