CROPS EU-project

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P12 Festo AG & Co. KG – Festo (DE)

Festo is a leading world-wide supplier of automation technology and pneumatic products. This globally-minded, family company headquartered in Esslingen, Germany, has become the performance leader in its industry over the last 40 years, thanks to its innovations and problem-solving competence in all aspects of pneumatics and to its range of training programmes, unique throughout the world.The use of air as a working medium, the simplest drive principle in the world, has led to the company’s present comprehensive range of over 25,000 automation products available in several hundred thousand variants. 57 independent national Festo companies around the world with over 250 regional offices in 176 countries ensure that advice, service, product quality and reliability precisely meet customers’ needs in all the industrial regions of the world. Today, more than 300,000 industrial customers round the globe place their trust in Festo’s problem-solving competence. Festo short facts:

  • Turnover (Festo Group): 1.7 billion euros
  • 13,500 employees world-wide
  • Research and development budget: 7.5% of turnover
  • 2,800 patents world-wide Approx. 100 innovations each year

Festo has in-depth experience in executing research projects, and recent years have seen a special focus on projects in the field of gripping technology. For example, the TFB34 “Intelligent 2-jaw gripper” project, funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). In this project, a servopneumatic gripper with independent jaws was developed, and today it is available in the Festo catalogue. Another project dealt with the energy optimization of pneumatic grippers (funded by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi, support code 0327365A). In the EUPASS-project (Evolvable Ultra-Precision Assembly Systems), the Festo also focused on the development of grippers with a standardised interface for the handling system (EU-FP6, Joint Call IST NMP, support code 507978-2).

Major activities in CROPS

In its role as an automation specialist and an expert at handling technology, Festo will develop the grippers for the CROPS project (WP3). Also, the manipulator interface will be part of the responsibility of Festo in cooperation with Technical University Munich (TUM). Later in the research, Festo will support the integration of the developed grippers with the demonstrators for the chosen applications in WP5 (sweet pepper) and WP6 (apples and grapes).