University's robot builds Ikea chair in about 20 minutes

By Ben Hooper
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April 20 (UPI) -- Scientists at a university in Singapore showed off the capabilities of their robots by having one of the machines assemble an Ikea chair.

The Nanyang Technological University researchers released a video showing the robot using two mechanical arms to build an Ikea Stefan chair.


The team said they programmed the robot with the order of the instructions and then spread the parts randomly around the robotic arms.

The arms used a 3D camera to map the locations of the pieces and spent about 11 minutes planning its movements before building the chair in about nine minutes.

"The job of assembly, which may come naturally to humans, has to be broken down into different steps, such as identifying where the different chair parts are, the force required to grip the parts, and making sure the robotic arms move without colliding into each other," assistant professor Pham Quang Cuong said on the school's website.

The researchers published their findings in the April issue of Science Robotics.

"We are looking to integrate more artificial intelligence into this approach to make the robot more autonomous so it can learn the different steps of assembling a chair through human demonstration or by reading the instruction manual, or even from an image of the assembled product," he said.


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