Several inventions developed by Hungarian researchers have been presented in recent weeks. One of these helps Industry 4.0, another saves lives, yet another is an energy producing paving stone. All of them have received global recognition.
Motion Capturing Device
Győr-based AXS Motionsystem ltd has developed a device capable of digital motion capturing and analysis. The system that is applicable in production lines, among others, is to start work at Audi. AXS’ system is able to carry out exact ergonomical measurements regarding, for example, magnitude of force, effect on environment or life functions – all this in an industrial environment and without interfering with the manufacturing procedures. The Hungarian startup has further developed both hardware and software of its application in collaboration with the Győr based Széchenyi István University and Audi. The device is tailored to the needs of Audi and has started operation in the Győr factory of the German car manufacturer. The globally unique motion capturing system digitizes human motion helping to identify non-ergonomical movements and so, makes possible the optimisation of workplaces and work procedures in light with ergonomical considerations. The system consists of two parts: a sensor-equipped suit that records the worker’s movements on a memory card and a software that analyses the data. The system is unique in that it is applicable in manufacturing work environment, directly at the work station, so laboratory environment is not required. The motion capturing device has been applied at several work stations of the company, improving ergonomy. Future workstations are also being designed with the help of the system.
The Hungarian-developed rescue robot has been awarded at RoboCup’s global contest. Rescue Robotics’ machine draws up the floorplan of collapsed buildings throughout the search operation. Robots of the contestants had to prove themselves on a special oblstacle maze in which they had to accomplish 15 of the 20 tasks. Among these were exercieses of dexterity such as opening doors, accessing limited spaces as well as stair walking. Rescue robots had to get through ruins and other obstacles as well. The robot developed by Rescue Robotics, as opposed to the rest of the field, is not caterpillar, but has special foam-covered wheels. This results in a total mass of about only 25 kgs, in contrast with the 100-150 kg mass of caterpillar robots. Further development is that the frame of the robot can be twisted and this ensures continuous ground contact for the wheels. Important unit of the machine is the long servo driven robotic arm on which a grasping tool is mounted together with a GPS reciever for outdoor applications. Cameras recognize various markings, so rescue personnel can learn where exactly gas tanks, chemicals, other potential threats or survivors are. Cameras are mounted also on the side of the robot, which observe, among others, what happens under the wheels. A carbon-dioxide sensor helps search for survivors and a laser range finder (LIDAR) measures the distance of the surrounding objects. Several still pictures are made per second, on the basis of which the floor plan of the rescue site can be drawn up. Hungarian developers won this year’s RoboCup constructors’ prize and their apparatus proved the best among outdoor robots.
Platio, the smart paving stone
The Hungarian developed paving stone, made of recycled material, produces energy and shares information. The invention, besides having been made of communal waste, is able to produce electricity, thanks to which it will be able to transfer information to those walking on it, for example, concerning the delay of the bus and alternative routes to get home faster. This has been named Infopavement. As opposed to the rest of the similar smart paving stones around the world, a great advantage of Platio is that it is made with a modular aspect in mind. Furthermore, no complex infrastructure is necessary to lay them: it can be laid practically just as any other paving stone. Presently, developers are working on starting mass production and they are trying to involve such projects where the already developed prototypes can be tested. There is great international interest in the Hungarian inventionand it has been invited to two prestigeous exhibitions. One is Smart City Expo in Barcelona, that enumerates the smart solutions of the city of tomorrow. The other is the world exhibition in Astana, where Platio was selected from more than 200 projects.