Control Interfaces — DYNAMIC DRIVE™

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Energid Technologies Listed on RBR50

posted Feb 17, 2016, 5:23 AM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Feb 17, 2016, 6:36 AM ]

Energid Technologies, Inc. — Best in Global Robotics: RBR50 2016

Energid Technologies, Inc. has been named to the Robotics Business Review list of 50 Best in Global Robotics for 2016.  Energid' Actin® adaptive and dynamic robotic control software is quickly becoming the standard for fast automation of complex robotic control in industries requiring everything from critical space operations with ultimate consequences to manufacturing and agriculture.

Energid Technologies, Inc. — RBR 50

For more information, visit the Actin®Dynamic Drive, and Energid Technologies pages or follow the link above.

Control Interfaces — DYNAMIC DRIVE™ 

Human in the Loop (or) Computer in the Loop: Augmented Intelligence and Performance

posted Sep 9, 2015, 12:56 PM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Sep 13, 2015, 11:37 AM ]

Human in the Loop (or) Computer in the Loop: Augmented Intelligence and Performance

A computer-centric robotic control approach applied at a professional level will play to the inherent strengths of both humans and robots. Toyota is working on Artificial Intelligence with a novel perspective on a familiar control theory concept referred to as "human in the loop." 

Although many research organizations apply this configuration, this particular case is noteworthy because of Toyota's unique approach. Rather than a typical human-in-the-loop system or full machine autonomy, the human is only making the larger high-level decisions (infrequent and easy for humans), and the computer is making the smaller high-speed decisions (frequent and complex for humans). Will Oremus of refers to this as “computer in the loop.” 

In many instances, the frequent low-level decisions are mathematically and physically complex, monopolize cerebral function, and can have greater consequences for the system.

Currently, humans are
 better at both understanding the sequence of operations and the underlying rationale. Conversely, computers are more adept at controlling robotic systems. Some of the shortcomings of human-controlled robotics are a function of the Human–Machine Interface (HMI), but FMC Schilling Robotics and others are at the forefront of innovations in this area. 

FMC Schilling Robotics ROV Control Console

Determining what level of abstraction end users and programmers should be operating under is becoming increasingly important for systems engineers and software developers. For roboticists developing adaptive robotic and human-supervisory control applications, Actin is the most advanced programming and augmentation tool available.

For more information, visit our Actin™, Dynamic Drive™, and ROV technology pages or follow the links above.

Control Interfaces — DYNAMIC DRIVE™ 

Balancing Automation with Human-in-the-Loop Design: DESIGNING MOTION™

posted Jul 25, 2015, 11:12 AM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Sep 13, 2015, 11:38 AM ]

Balancing Automation with Human-in-the-Loop Design: DESIGNING MOTION™

The images below show the carrier taxiing control unit for the US NAVY's X-47B Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle - Demonstrator (UCAS-D) and the X47-B itself being controlled by a member of the flight deck crew. The X-47B is a highly capable Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV); however, the system is not trusted to autonomously position itself prior to or after flight. 

While some components of autonomous operations benefit from low-latency logic, some high-level decision-making components benefit from a human in the loop. An example of this design approach is the X47-B hand-held carrier taxiing control unit. A human is entrusted for adaptable control where a mishap could cause the greatest disruption. An intelligent robotic system can make logical decisions; however, it cannot hold responsibility.

In systems where the human in the loop cannot be near the controlled system, latency can become an issue. New strategies are required to apply these principles to articulated robotic systems that maintain adaptable control but avoid latency issues during operation. This becomes especially important when the autonomous system is mobile and carries out tasks where the exact motion is not repeatable from one operation to the next. In other words, an ideal system would only need to be told what and when to do something and not exactly how to do it every time.

As ROVs, robotic automation, and sensors continue to develop, remotely operated systems will continue to shift to something more closely resembling a Remotely Automated Vehicle (RAV).

x-47 4

Carrier Taxiing Control Unit (Above)

X47-B UCAS-D Controlled by Flight Deck Crew (Above)

For more information, visit our Dynamic Drive™ and ROV technology pages or follow the links above.

Oceaneering Reveals Their New ROV: NEXXUS

posted Feb 15, 2015, 7:54 AM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Oct 7, 2015, 4:41 AM ]

Oceaneering ROV Systems has added a new higher-power ROV: NEXXUS.

The renderings and animation below show the new API 53 compliant NEXXUS ROV configured with two Atlas 7 Manipulators, each equipped with parallel style grippers. The actual photos show the port manipulator to be an Atlas 7R (rate controlled) manipulator equipped with a claw type gripper. The starboard manipulator is an Atlas 7H (Hybrid) and is equipped with a sensor package containing a light, laser, and camera. The Atlas 7H (Hybrid) is capable of position and rate control modes with 6 Degrees of Freedom (DOF) in addition to the End Effector operation and is currently the most powerful hydraulic position control-capable manipulator in use by the subsea industry. 

As ROV automation and subsea interface standardization continue to develop, ROV and AUV configurations with multiple position controlled manipulators will likely become common. These ultra dextrous ROVs and AUVs will be well-suited for the next generation of subsea intervention: Automation

For more information, visit our Dynamic Drive™ and ROV technology pages or follow the links below.

20150504 Oceaneering NEXXUS ROV
Oceaneering NEXXUS ROV (OTC2015)
OTC2015 NEXXUS Sensor Package
Oceaneering NEXXUS ROV

NASA NBL Commercialization — Tracerco and Oceaneering demonstrate deep water CT scanning

posted Dec 15, 2014, 9:09 AM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Sep 14, 2015, 3:59 AM ]

Watch Tracerco's Discovery™ in action at NASA's Neutral Buoyancy Lab (NBL) in Houston, TX.

This latest version of Tracerco's ultra-deep water (3000m) CT scanning technology contains a crawler system allowing the tool to propel itself along the pipeline.

NASA Neutral Buoyancy Lab

NBL Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) System Integration Testing (SIT)

NBL ROV System Integration Testing

posted Oct 28, 2014, 7:05 AM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Sep 14, 2015, 4:00 AM ]

NASA begins commercializing its Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory.

In 2013 NASA opened its Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL), located in Houston, TX USA, for commercial use. At 102ft (31.09m) W X 202ft (61.57m) L X 40ft (12.19m) D, the NBL holds 6.2 million gallons (23469.6 m³) of water making it the largest indoor pool in the world. The facility maintains an Oceaneering MILLENNIUM® Plus ROV on site and can also support other work-class ROVs. Originally, the NBL was used to train Astronauts, Comsonauts, and support the International Space Station assembly and repair operations. 

ROVs and AUVs are also highly complex systems that require intensive logistics support making them expensive to operate. As oil and gas prices fall, the development of highly efficient techniques and aiding technologies becomes even more important. Control Interfaces and our partners are developing and integrating technologies at the forefront of innovation for ROV/AUV intervention.


On-site NBL ROV — Houston, TX

For more information, visit our ROV technology page or contact 

Aspects of Tool Interfaces

posted Jun 26, 2013, 2:19 PM by Daniel Dockter   [ updated Sep 13, 2015, 11:38 AM ]

The ability to create, use, and improve tools is an important part of what makes us human.

Every tool conceived by a human reflects an effort to overcome a problem. As a problem's complexity increases or is identified, so does the tendency of the solution to become more complex. Control Interfaces LLC maintains that the simplest solutions are usually the best; however, both simplicity and complexity are relative. Thorough organization and the appropriate systems and processes are key to developing tooling that provide the best solutions. We strive first to understand the problem to identify interdependent needs and how they might impact customer requirements. The pragmatism and diligence emphasized in this approach enable the user to maintain the maximum number of options throughout a project.

Control Interfaces LLC specializes in intuitive and durable systems to continuously improve human and machine interaction.

The company is comprised of design, engineering, and fabrication stand-outs with backgrounds in complex fields, including automotive manufacturing, aerospace, hydrospace, and energy. 

Control Interfaces — DYNAMIC DRIVE™

For more information contact

Control Interfaces — DYNAMIC DRIVE™

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