Dexter gets ready for action!

31. august 2020
Alex Mason fitting Dexter with his first tool, a 12” breaking saw. Image source, Luis Eduardo Cordova-Lopez, NMBU.

This June, NMBU took delivery of its second ABB IRB 4600 robot, named Dexter, and it was an exciting time for the RoBUTCHER project. Whereas NMBU’s first robot, named “Ole” after the inventor of the Meat Factory Cell concept (Ole Alvseike, Animalia), prioritises lifting, Dexter has a different role. His arm is longer (2.55m vs. 2.05m), which will enable him to reach all parts of the carcass to cut with a knife and saw.

The two robots shall work together, with Ole stretching and lifting parts of the carcass, and Dexter taking full advantage of this – muscle tissue is much easier to cut when stretched.

For RoBUTCHER, this new installation means that we are a significant step closer to testing and demonstrating several aspects of the project; the Artificial Intelligence to predict cutting pathways, the Intelligent Tooling, as well as the overall system integration.

We do expect some adjustments to Dexter’s position within the Meat Factory Cell, to optimise his ability to reach all required areas for example, but even now we plan our first trials between NMBU, Ciklum and Bytemotion in late August or early September. Those first trials will focus on the use of a saw, however in September we also expect to fit Dexter with his first knife blade.

We of course hope that Ole and Dexter will be good friends. If not, it seems that Dexter has an unfair advantage when equipped with an EFA SK 30/18 saw, complete with 12” blade! Sorry Ole!