MachyTech enables humans and robots to work safely together

Eindhoven University of Technology

Autonomous robots. They are driving around more and more in, for example, at the sorting centers of companies. They lift objects out of boxes, move them around and put them down again. The robots perform the heavy, sometimes monotonous tasks so that the scarce labor force can be used elsewhere. Convenient and efficient. But, robots do not communicate with their surroundings. Will they turn left, turn right, or is something wrong? The MachyTech student team wants to fix that problem with the help of deep learning, projections, LiDAR systems and voice recognition, among other things.

Human aspects

“Our goal is to enable robots and humans to work together safely,” says Martijn Stoorvogel, co-founder of MachyTech. “Robots can take a lot of work off your hands. But there’s also something slightly scary about that. We want to combine that technical world with the human aspects.”

He started the student team together with Timo Thans. The two are friends and have known each other since birth. Their fathers both studied physics at the Eindhoven University of Technology ( TU/e), became friends and kept in touch after their studies. Like their fathers, Stoorvogel and Thans opted for a technical study, Stoorvogel for biomedical engineering at TU/e, and Thans for electrical engineering at TU Delft. Both have since finished their bachelor’s degrees. Stoorvogel chose a gap year and Thans is working on his masters.

It is actually a project that has gotten a bit out of hand, says Stoorvogel. “Timo had taken on an assignment from the Prime Vision company as a final project for his bachelor’s degree. This company builds autonomous robots, and Timo was tasked with researching how robots can communicate with the surrounding environment.” As soon as he started working on his assignment, Thans noticed that more was involved than just research, says Stoorvogel. “He wanted to take it further and asked me to join him.”

America

They set up a student team, MachyTech, and joined TU/e innovation Space

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