Ural Federal University: PhD Students of the University won the Digital Engineer Contest

PhD students from the Ural Federal University’s Department of Electronic Engineering Ivan Pronichev and Semyon Stupin won the Digital Engineer Contest, which is organized annually by the ASCON Group of Companies. They presented working prototypes of robotic devices useful for mechanical engineering. The young scientists told about how their projects were created and how their developments can help the industry in the latest issue of the Ural Federal newspaper.

For example, Ivan Pronichev presented a project for a 6-axis industrial robot.

“If very conventionally, it is a human arm. In order to perform monotonous movements on automated lines, industrial robots-manipulators were designed in industry back in the early 70s. But back then, they and their control units were bulky, but in today’s environment, with modern technology, we were able to make an industrial robot that can move, for example, one kilogram, and its own weight will not be more than six. So we managed to make the robot lighter, more energy efficient,” Ivan explains.

As a result, Ivan and his supervisor Olga Ogorodnikova had the idea of creating a complete set of design and technological documentation for the production of a six-axis manipulator using Russian CAD.

“We needed a prototype to start with. With the support of ASCON and Compass 3D software, we first created a 3D model, then purchased motors, sensors, and other purchased items, and assembled the robot. All the work continued throughout the year. The final-year bachelor’s students took part, making parts on the machine, soldering, and programming,” Ivan specifies.

In turn, Semyon Stupin won the competition with his anthropomorphic gripper.

“The idea for the project was suggested by my research supervisor, Olga Ogorodnikova. The development of the electronic model of the gripper device in the domestic CAD-system ” Compass” was an integral part of my graduate qualification work as a bachelor. One of the main ideas of the project was to introduce the elements of bionic design into the geometry and, in particular, to explore the possibilities of topological optimization and generative design for this purpose. The resulting model is the basis for a working prototype,” says Semyon.

Manipulator robots are versatile and usually come without gripper devices. Grippers are developed for specific tasks. In this case, it was decided to create a device that could be used for picking or sorting fruit in agriculture and in general for work with biological objects. To this end, the device was designed so as not to damage the object being grabbed. It has sensors that control the force and a vision system.

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