ANDY: THE MADE IN ITALY COLLABORATING ROBOT WINS THE EUROPEAN HORIZON 2020 CALL
Italian excellences are not limited to crafts and food, as shown by the result of the European Robotics Horizon 2020 ICT call: of the 17 projects that have received funding from the European Commission, 5 are Italian, but not only. The project that got the first place is completely Made in Italy: it is called “AnDy”, acronym for Advancing Anticipatory Behaviors in Dyadic Human-Robot Collaboration, and it is the collaborating robot of the future. AnDy was created by scholars of the Italian Institute of Technology, coordinated by researcher Francesco Nori. Thanks to the European call for Horizon 2020 ICT, the project has obtained a co-financing of around 4 million euros and the possibility for scientists to collaborate with research institutes and companies in France, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and Slovenia. These new generation robots have been designed to collaborate with people and facilitate them especially in the workplace, thanks to a system that allows you to capture and interpret the physical needs of man and minimize the risk of accidents: a suit equipped with sensors will send information on the movements of the worker directly to the robot, which will then be able to respond by providing its help in carrying out physical efforts or more complex actions. Workers can be facilitated in the production line also thanks to a real wearable exoskeleton that will enhance the actions or correct the body structure to make it more comfortable and thus avoid the risk of injury. The most innovative aspect of the AnDy project is certainly the creation of "companions", robots that will be able to interpret and anticipate human actions by performing tasks appropriate to the physical state of people. This type of "humanoid" robot will have a high reaction rate and will be suitable for everyday life, especially for the care of the elderly or people who need constant support.