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Abstract or Description

In this paper, we describe a generative process planning system for robotic sheet metal bending press-brakes. This process planning system employs a distributed plan- ning architecture. Currently, our system consists of a central operation planner and three specialized domain specific planners: tooling, grasping, and moving. The central operation planner proposes various alternative partial sequences and each specialized planner evaluates them based on its objective function. The central operation planner uses state-space search techniques to optimize the operation sequence. Once a CAD design is given for a new part, the system automatically determines: the operation sequence, the tools and robot grippers needed, the tool layout, the grasp positions, the gage and the robot motion plans for making the part. The distributed architecture allows us to develop an open-architecture environment for doing generative process planning and encapsulate the specialized knowledge in specialized planners.

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