A highly developed ready-made solution When dealing with highly sophisticated production lines and multi-robot work cell installations one of the best ways to test and verify decisions is to simulate in a 3D environment and see these operations as realistically as possible in real-time. KUKA chose the Visual Components simulation and visualization software suite mainly because it provides a readily available and highly developed solution. The software also offers comprehensive functionality at a price far below that demanded by larger suppliers. In addition, KUKA exploited other important features of the software: the combination of material flow and robot simulation on a single platform, and reusable ‘plug-and-play’ equipment libraries to support the sales processes of business partners. These features provide partners with a powerful layout configuration tool to help them produce highly realistic, animated presentations and real-time production planning demonstrations for marketing and sales purposes. Further, end-users of the robot based production systems also benefit from the production model by conducting material flow studies for improved throughput. Visual Component’s flexibility and excellent cooperation in R&D gives us the freedom and capability to develop our robots to fit extremely versatile industries. We also appreciate the software’s open component-based architecture.Andreas Keibel, Project Leader, KUKA Roboter GmbH Complete answer for the robot manufacturer In general, no other solution but Visual Components offered KUKA this overall flexibility, comparable value for money, or completeness. Applications such as discrete event simulation only addressed a small part of what the robot manufacturer wanted. Computer-aided design (CAD) systems could not provide process simulation. Some simulation and visualization capabilities were offered by large solution providers, but were too costly or lacked fundamental features. Above all, there was no need for KUKA to develop its own modeling software, which would otherwise have diverted much time and money into development. The company could ‘hit the ground running’ with a ready-made solution. Stepping stone into new markets For many years the automotive industry has represented the main market for KUKA’s sales. However, the versatility and openness of the Visual Components software means that the company can now diversify into new, more general industrial market sectors. Visual Components will help the company quickly adapt to these contrasting scenarios. This is an interesting challenge for us: the whole logic of the business is totally different when you compare these two industry categories. In general industry the biggest dilemma lies in the heterogenic demands of all sorts of different manufacturing processes.Andreas Keibel, Project Leader, KUKA Roboter GmbH Find out more about the solution at KUKA’s website.