Advanced science.  Applied technology.


Cobots in Industry

May 17, 2021
Go to Robotics Automation Webinar event

Free Webinar: Cobots in Industry

Join us Monday, May 17, 2021, at 1:00 p.m.–2:00 p.m. (U.S. Central Time)


You have probably heard the term cobots, or collaborative robots, but may have been unsure about what the term means or how they are used. Join SwRI roboticists in “Cobots in Industry” to learn about what Cobots are, how they can be used, and when they are the appropriate choice versus an industrial or custom robot. Cody, Tori, and Ben will share their knowledge with you in a collaborative and conversational setting.

In foreground, a woman using a control pad to manipulate a collaborative robot; in background, a man is working on a second robot
Meet Your Hosts

Cody Bressler is a Senior Research Engineer at SwRI. Cody has participated in wide variety of project involving custom hardware development and novel research. He has designed systems ranging from a 60-ton laser coating removal robot to a miniature folding quadcopter for confined spaces. His first exposure to cobots occurred when the market was still taking shape and he helped design a lightweight, high-accuracy, injection-moldable gearbox for low-cost cobots. His first experience working with a cobot involved a flexible material handling project where the cobot worked in close proximity to humans. His experience in flexible material handling led Cody to coauthor an internal research project focused on layup of flexible, sticky prepreg carbon fiber on complex geometries using a pair of cobots with force control. This project and others led Cody to author another internal research project to address the unique cable management challenges posed by cobots due to their joint configuration and force limits. Currently, Cody is leading an effort to develop a compact mobile robot capable of conducting high-force operations such as drilling and media blast in confined spaces including ship ballast tanks and pressure vessels.

Tori Wahlen is an SwRI Engineer who focuses on mechanical design in a variety of applications. She designed a custom robotic vehicle to inspect double-walled nuclear waste storage tanks for cracks using a large electromagnet. This system features a robust design in order to meet specific requirements, such as fitting within a 24-inch steel riser and inspecting both inner and outer annulus regions. Tori is helping lead mechanical efforts in the fabrication, assembly, and testing phase for this robotic vehicle. Additionally, she has been essential in assisting mechanical design efforts for the final integration of a Laser Depaint Robot. She has assisted with large-scale structure and integration design, cable management, and pneumatic operations within this system. Tori also serves as our Robot Safety point of contact and is consulted during cobot installations to ensure they are truly collaborative as intended.

Ben Greenberg is a Research Engineer at SwRI. He is a core member of the team that developed a mobile aerospace inspection robot. This project required the integration of a cobot, a servo rail, and a mobile base into a cohesive system. Ben also contributed to the Visual Programming IR&D project. This team developed capabilities to program a robot path using a handheld demonstration tool and a camera. This method is far more intuitive than the traditional Teach Pendant and has comparable speed to hand-guided methods. Mr. Greenberg led the testing of this system with human subjects, developed software functionality to optimize the testing process, and authored the experimental portion of the final report. Currently, he is working on a project to make significant progress towards a truly collaborative way for robots and humans to work together.

For more information, please contact Sarah Rogers.