Nerospec SK: Consulting on System-Architecture for Underground Mining Automation using ROS 2
Nerospec SK is a company leading the 4th industrial revolution in underground mining by providing connectivity and automation solutions for heterogeneous fleets. Their vision is to make mines, miners and machines safer and more efficient by using digital machine solutions. With the aim of bringen new generation of automation technology to underground mining vehicles, they identified the potential of robotic technologies for that task. Still, the challenging environment and hydraulically controlled machines break classical assumptions of mobile robotics.
Coming from a mining background, the team at Nerospec SK wanted to make sure they are moving in the right direction using state-of-the-art libraries and tools for their application. They needed someone with in-depth experience in how to leverage existing automation technology best. For their OEM independent solutions, open technologies have always been a big part of their ecosystem. Therefore, they chose DDS and ROS 2 as future-proven technology to realize next-generation automation for mining. From the first contact, the personal, pragmatic approach and experience of the Stogl Robotics Team convinced them to team up.
After the initial contact, the goal was clear – the team from Stogl Robotics should share their development experiences with ROS 2 and create a sketch of the future architecture and a roadmap. Before starting the work, Stogl Robotics did an on-site visit to Nerospec SK offices for the workshop to learn more about the requirements in mining applications and share experiences and possibilities of state-of-the-art robotics solutions. In a short time of engagement, Nerospec SK was leveraging Stogl Robotics’ expertise across a number of domains: software architecture for complex robotic systems, localization and navigation possibilities of vehicles in ROS 2, integration of heterogeneous sensors, and concepts for the control of mining vehicles using ros2_control framework.
The assessment and reports delivered to Nerospec SK focused their team’s efforts on where they could best accelerate development. After this initial project, Stogl Robotics is further mentoring the internal team of Nerospec SK to build up internal expertise. It allows them to keep developing their solutions with proven, state-of-the-art technologies.