BMW “adopts” robot dog to collect data at UK factory

BMW “adopts” robot dog to collect data at UK factory
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The BMW factory, located in Hamms Hall, United Kingdom, recently had a “good guy” to help with tasks such as data collection and real-time monitoring of production lines: he's Spoto, a state-of-the-art dog. The art robot was “adopted,” or rather, incorporated into the daily operations of the plant to assist in various procedures.

BMW explained that Spoto is an autonomous robot in the shape of a dog that “inspects the plant, supports maintenance and ensures that production processes run smoothly.”

The “working” robot dog at BMW is equipped with visual, thermal and acoustic sensors to act in different scenarios: on the one hand, it collects valuable data for the plant's digital twin; On the other hand, it acts as a security guard, overseeing the maintenance of production facilities.

“Virtualization, automation and artificial intelligence are central pillars of the BMW factory. Examples of such bold and innovative applications show the full range of possibilities,” explains Klaus von Moltke, Senior Vice President Engine Production at BMW AG.

“Good boy”, Spoto is an autonomous robot dog that helps out at a BMW factory in the UK (Image: Disclosure/BMW Group)

What does BMW's robot dog do in the factory?

SOTTO, BMW's robot dog, uses its many sensors to monitor the temperature of production equipment and in real-time, and if anything gets too hot, it could be a sign of system failure.

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The “good guy” was programmed to detect leaks in the compressed air connections used in the factory's production. In this way, by quickly detecting any leaks, the robot dog helps reduce energy consumption.

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In terms of data collection, SpOTTO works in three different stages: creating 3D images of the entire BMW plant, aligning a large amount of data and finally, classifying everything collected into traceable and easy-to-understand units.

The robot dog has many functions at the BMW factory (Image: Disclosure/BMW Group)
The robot dog has many functions at the BMW factory (Image: Disclosure/BMW Group)

Marco da Silva, head of SPOT product development at Boston Dynamics, responsible for the “birth” of the robot dog, is pleased with the way SOTTO has been integrated into the BMW factory.

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“SpOTTO can easily take over the completion of many repetitive monitoring tasks so plant maintenance staff can focus on maintenance. We are proud of the way the robot is integrated into the factory.

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