NODE.OS

The operating system for collaborative AMR fleets

With NODE.OS heterogeneous AMR fleets can be operated holistically – from the receipt and allocation of pending transport orders to the control of individual vehicles. This is the only way to exploit the potential of AMR in terms of flexibility and autonomy and to realize collaboratively operating fleets in diverse applications.

NODE.OS is based on three levels:

  • NODE.EDGE for navigation and control of individual AMR,
  • NODE.MESH for data sharing and collaboration between AMRs and
  • NODE.SRVS for fleet management and coordination.   


As interface 
we use the VDA5050 standardextended by our Open API, to realize autonomous fleets.

Not every application is the same and requires a high degree of autonomy. The modular architecture, as well as the easy configurability of the individual components of NODE.OS, enables a customized solution for your application – from virtual line guidance to free navigation.

Basic capability of the AMR for autonomous navigation

Robust
Designed specifically for industrial conditions and requirements, the NODE.EDGE delivers the level of robustness needed to ensure maximum AMR availability even in harsh environments.
Autonomous
Continuously updated environment and data models enable the NODE.EDGE to adapt to environmental changes in real time and to cope with unforeseen situations. If desired, the AMRs avoid obstacles such as other vehicles or people and successfully execute even previously unknown orders.
Plug & Play
The entire system architecture of the NODE.EDGE is designed for simple and time-efficient commissioning and maintenance. Intuitive user interfaces enable operation by personnel without major training efforts.

Live SLAM

Localization without additional markers ("contour navigation") even in highly variable environments? The Live SLAM realizes this through probabilistic localization methods in combination with continuous map updating.

In the basic setup, the sensor data of the 2D (safety) LIDAR sensors are sufficient for this. Optionally, further sensor systems such as 3D LIDAR, camera systems, GPS/UWB, etc. can be integrated. In addition to localization, Live SLAM provides the current map of the environment as a basis for e.g. dynamic route planning and traffic management.

Online Route Planning

Calculate the best route at runtime even in large, variable industrial environments?

The online route planner calculates the optimal route between any start/destination at runtime based on the current map and user-defined traffic zones (such as one-way streets, no-go zones, etc.).

The route calculation takes into account robot-specific properties such as kinematics, dimensions including speed-dependent safety fields and loading condition.

Dynamic Motion Planning

Optimal motion planning despite switching safety fields?

Dynamic motion planning ensures efficient execution of the global route and collision avoidance by calculating optimal trajectories and speed commands.

It takes into account both internal constraints of the AMR (kinematics, dynamics, footprint, safety fields) and obstacles detected in real time with onboard sensor technology (2D/3D LIDAR, camera systems).

Increasing the performance of the fleet through networking and collaboration among AMRs

Robust
Designed specifically for industrial conditions and requirements, the NODE.EDGE delivers the level of robustness needed to ensure maximum AMR availability even in harsh environments.
Autonomous
Continuously updated environment and data models enable the NODE.EDGE to adapt to environmental changes in real time and to cope with unforeseen situations. If desired, the AMRs avoid obstacles such as other vehicles or people and successfully execute even previously unknown orders.
Plug & Play
The entire system architecture of the NODE.EDGE is designed for simple and time-efficient commissioning and maintenance. Intuitive user interfaces enable operation by personnel without major training efforts.

Collaborative motion planning

If several AMR operate in the same workspace, conflicts up to deadlocks are not excluded. To resolve these conflicts, AMRs typically rely on block operation or other manually defined traffic rules, which cause high setup efforts and severely limit the AMRs' capabilities. Collaborative motion planning, on the other hand, enables AMRs to independently resolve conflicts and realize efficient interaction. In this process, the planned movement trajectories are exchanged between the involved AMR and optimized collaboratively.

Collaborative SLAM

Large-scale, highly dynamic environments can become challenging due to the limited sensor horizon of individual AMRs, reducing their availability and robustness. Detection and exchange of localization information between the individual AMRs, as well as integration of stationary sensor technology, can resolve the problems of individuals via the fleet network

Fleet management and coordination for AMR

Robust
By accessing the global environment and state model of the fleet, the robustness level of the NODE.EDGE components on the individual AMR is further increased. Even in case of failure of a single AMR, this can be compensated across the fleet and thus the material flow can be ensured.
Autonomous
Transport orders are dyamically assigned to the optimal robot for the respective order. Blockages and traffic jams are detected predictively and the fleet’s AMR is rerouted in advance.
Plug & Play
By supporting the standardized interface definition VDA5050, we also enable AMRs that are not equipped with NODE.EDGE to be connected to the NODE.SRVS and thus to be operated in the fleet network.

Global Live Map Server

Ensures that each AMR is always supplied with the latest environment information (live map) for localization and route planning. Merges the map changes and environment information collected by the individual AMRs into a global live map and offers this to the AMRs as a map update for download. Ensures that new AMRs are directly equipped with up-to-date environment information and are immediately operational. Simultaneously provides an up-to-date live view of the environment ("digital twin").

Traffic Manager

Each AMR is initially capable of calculating its own route and executing jobs. The larger the fleet or the more complex the environment, the more important it becomes to have a central traffic management system based on complete fleet status information. This ensures that dead locks are avoided, blockages are bypassed and traffic is distributed evenly across the routes. It continuously analyzes the AMR's planned routes and reroutes individual vehicles to other routes if necessary.

Job Broker

Which AMR takes over which transport job? This task is solved by the Job Broker taking into account relevant constraints such as order processing time/priority, goods to be transported, battery charge status, and many more. The optimization is considered with regard to the entirety of currently pending orders as well as the fleet status (position, travel time, etc.) and the solution that generates the maximum throughput is calculated.

Web-based User Interface

Deployment, configuration & commissioning as well as monitoring and analysis of the fleet - all this can be done comfortably in our web-based user interface. This was developed using the latest concepts from the field of UI/UX and thus enables intuitive operation on all relevant end devices (desktop, tablet, smartphone).

Fleet/Traffic Simulater

How much AMRs are needed to ensure the required material flow? How do changes to the hall layout affect the traffic flow? With the integrated fleet simulation, process, environment or fleet changes can be visualized and optimized in advance.