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Introduction: Special Issue on Enabling Robot Autonomy



Craig I. Schlenoff, Stephen B. Balakirsky, Henrik I. Christensen


Today's state-of-the-art robots are capable of sub-millimeter movement accuracy when performing highly repeatable tasks. They perform extremely well in highly structured environments, where objects are in well-known, predictable locations. However, robots are not known for "thinking on the fly" to cope with unexpected events or changing situations. They are best when they can be programmed to perform a specific activity, which requires a specific set of motions, and that activity can be performed in the exact same way many hundreds or thousands of times. Not surprisingly, robots have been adopted much more in high volume, repeatable operations such as painting and welding rather than in smaller job shop type operations where only a handful of similar products are being made at a given time. Another way to describe this is that robots are not considered agile. Robot systems of the future need to perform their duties at least as well as human counterparts, be quickly re-tasked to other operations, and cope with a wide variety of unexpected environmental and operational changes in order for them to be useful to small manufacturers and to also allow larger manufacturers to offer more automated customization of high volume parts. This paper is an introduction to a journal special issue that addresses these topics.
Integrated Computer Aided Engineering Journal


robotics, manufacturing, agility, autonomy, knowledge representation


Schlenoff, C. , Balakirsky, S. and Christensen, H. (2018), Introduction: Special Issue on Enabling Robot Autonomy, Integrated Computer Aided Engineering Journal, [online], (Accessed June 15, 2024)


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Created March 14, 2018, Updated November 10, 2018