As a fifth year engineering student in mechanical engineering at KU Leuven I proposed my own subject for my thesis to my promoter. As I found out I was interested in decision making tools and decision support, but also in robotics and mechanics. I combined both of these interests in the creation of my robot selection tool as the goal of my thesis.
I started my thesis by working for two weeks on the production site of Niko NV in Sint-Niklaas, Belgium. I worked as an operator on various repetitive manual tasks to gain insight in the process. After this experience I did a literature study on various types of robots and cobots and the different types of multi-criteria decision making. I decided to work with the PAPRIKA model (multi-criteria decision model) supported by the 1000minds software. To find out the criteria for the model I interviewed more than 50 people of 23 different companies (scroll down to see their logo). With this input I constructed the Robot Selector tool that is presented on this website. I validated the Robot Selector tool with the engineering department of Niko for a first case, and revisited again all the companies who helped me in the first step, to validate the tool with 26 different industrial cases. In May 2018 I finished the development of the Robot Selector tool and I implemented a practical case with a collaborative robot at Niko (scroll down to see a video).
Since June 2018 I am also active as a part-time freelancer in the fields of robotics and cobotics since I plan to start a new master study. I am specialized in scanning production sites for automation opportunities and installing and programming cobot-experiments. If you are working at a manufacturing company and you are interested in my services or looking for some advice in robotics, feel free to contact me through the contact page and I am sure we can work something out.
Special thanks goes out to the following companies who provided excellent feedback that was used to construct this tool: