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With HORSE, the industry rides advanced manufacturing technologies

​Together with major European industrial and academic partners, CEA, through its institute CEA LIST in Paris-Saclay, steps up its efforts to deploy advanced manufacturing technologies and robotics in industry.

Published on 15 June 2017
Small and medium-sized companies form the backbone of the European economy. Ensuring that their production methods are state-of-the-art is key to maintaining competitiveness. Innovative technologies such as collaborative robotics, smart vision systems, virtual and augmented reality and business process management tools are being developed by CEA and other partners, but the transfer of these technologies to SMEs is difficult for two reasons: the sheer number of companies to be reached, and their limited investment capacity.

In order to boost the deployment of robotics technologies in Europe, CEA LIST has embarked on the HORSE project with:
  • Industrial partners, such as Kuka and Bosch;
  • Major cluster organisations, such as CETIM, TCS and Sercobe;
  • And academic partners, including TUM, Eindhoven University of Technology, and FZI in Karlsruhe. 
The project started in 2016 and will run for three years. One of the objectives is to develop middleware – the Horse Framework– to facilitate the deployment of robotics on production lines. 
The PARIS SACLAY RIF (CEA LIST Competence Centre) © Philippe Dureuil/CEA

Coordinated by the European Dynamics organisation and acting through Competence Centres and Digital Innovation Hubs, the HORSE consortium proposes a new flexible model of smart factory, where humans, robots, AGVs (autonomous guided vehicles) and machines can work together efficiently.  

CEA LIST is one of four European Robotics Competence Centres, together with TUM, TNO and TCS. CEA LIST brings its world-class collaborative robotics technologies and expertise to the table, as well as its robotics prototypes and industrial equipment. Through an open call mechanism, SMEs can propose how they imagine these new technologies could help improve their production process and lead to growth. Successful applicants benefit from subsidised access to Competence Centres in order to test their use case. 

The recognition of CEA LIST as a European Robotics Competence Centre builds upon the work begun in the FP7 ECHORD++ project, with the recognition of the Paris-Saclay RIF (for Robotics Innovation Facilities) as one of three European RIFs dedicated to transferring robotics technologies to industry.
 1 Created in July 2015, the Industry of the Future Alliance brings together professional organisations from industry and digital technology along with academic and technological partners, all rallying around a common ambition: to make France a leader in the world’s industrial renewal and to propel the entire national industrial fabric right to the heart of new industrial systems.
These ongoing efforts are in line with CEA LIST’s ambition to become a major hub for smart manufacturing technologies at the European level. The Institute is already a major stakeholder in the development of advanced manufacturing technology and its transfer to industry in France. A founding member of the Industry of the Future Alliance1, CEA LIST also launched the FactoryLab technological platform with major French academic and industrial partners. FactoryLab focuses on the development of Advanced Manufacturing technologies for different industrial applications. The platform was officially opened in September 2016 by the French Secretary of State for Industry. 

In addition, the FFLOR (Factory of the Future @ Lorraine) platform was launched by CEA in January 2017. This open and collaborative platform aims to develop and transfer new flexible manufacturing systems using collaborative robots and other advanced technologies. 
FFLOR is a concrete illustration of CEA’s commitment to transferring research results directly to industry, as it is physically located inside a PSA motor factory to accelerate the technology development and transfer process.
The PARIS SACLAY RIF (CEA LIST Competence Centre) © P.Stroppa/CEA

About HORSE project:

The European Commission funds HORSE to the amount of €7.9 million for a total budget of €8.9 million. The project, which is expected to run from 2016 to 2019, brings together fifteen partners from seven countries. HORSE – the smart integrated immersive and symbiotic human-robot collaboration system, controlled by the Internet of Things and based on dynamic manufacturing processes, with the emphasis on worker safety.

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