An RCS Application Example: Tool Changing on a Horizontal Machining Center

  • John C. Fiala
  • Albert J. Wavering
Conference paper


A large six-axis manipulator performs material handling tasks for a horizontal machining center in the National Bureau of Standards’ Automated Manufacturing Research Facility. The manipulator is controlled by the Real-time Control System (RCS), a hierarchical control system developed by the Robot Systems Division at NBS. This manipulator is used to load and unload parts for the machine and, recently, to change tools on the machine. This paper describes the development of tool changing as a new RCS application, including the creation of new commands to be sent to RCS from a workstation controller and the techniques used to program manipulator movements. The integration of force sensing to monitor tool insertion and removal as well as the addition of a changeable end effector for handling tools are discussed.


Force Sensor Tool Holder Robot Controller Quick Change Tool Transfer 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • John C. Fiala
    • 1
  • Albert J. Wavering
    • 1
  1. 1.Robot Systems DivisionNational Bureau of StandardsGaithersburgUSA

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