The Artificial Robotics Skin solution, in its current form featuring force, temperature, motion&vibration and pre-contact sensing up to 10 cm (4 inches) that comes with built-in visualization feedback.

Inspired by human skin - enhanced for industrial use.

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Our Technology

We offer our partners an integrated industrial-grade sensor web solution, specifically meant and designed for applications in robotics.
This BBC movie about CellulARSkin introduces our technology from an external perspective:

Sensor Cells
  • Pre-contact: Each cell features a proximity sensor with a range of about 10cm (4 inches). With this pre-contact sensing, safety stops and collision avoidance for robot arms can be realised. Further on this also enables feather-light interaction (kinaesthetic teaching) even with a heavy robot.
  • Force: A single skin cell is equipped with three force measurement sensors which are designed for industrial loads. Various measurement ranges can be provided, tailored to your application.
  • Motion and Vibration: Each cell reports its local 3D acceleration. You can use this sensor to monitor motions, control the orientation of e.g. a gripper, detect slip and impacts or classify surface roughness.
  • Temperature: Optionally an accurate temperature sensor serves to e.g. detect human touch, measure wind-chill effects or monitor surface temperature distribution in a very fine spatial resolution.
Sensor System
  • Building Your Skin: With our modular technology we can quickly equip nearly every surface of your robot with a dense tactile sensor network - from the whole robot arm to the finger tips of a gripper.
  • Skin Gateway: A fast, Gigabit Ethernet based FPGA Gateway serves to power and communicate with your robotic skin - delivering the lowest latencies and highest possible number of skin cells.

Our Unique Features

Through our advanced technology, we offer our customers several unique features:
  • Multi-Redundancy
    • Sensor level: a whole set of different sensors detects contacts with the environment.
    • cell-2-cell connections: each cell connects to up to four neighbours, while only one is required.
    • skin connections: the whole skin can be innervated by multiple redundant connections.
  • High spatial resolution: Due to the meshed character and the high cell density.
  • High Performance
    • Low Latency (<4ms): Enables reactive closed loop control
    • High update rate (250Hz): Features high temporal resolution
  • Visual Feedback: Each cell is also equipped with a dimmable RGB-LED. This way you can use your robotic skin as warning light, display or even interactive menu.
  • Preprocessing: To save computing ressources on your robot controller, you may also set thresholds for each cell and each sensor group individually. Cells will then only report changes, much like the human skin. We call this feature "Events".
  • Fully Integrated: The skin and one of our gateways, that is all hardware you need.
  • Plug & Play: Due to our sophisticated control software the skin is plug & play capable.
  • Self-calibration: You do not have to manually calibrate the skin. It can automatically reconstruct the 3D surface of your robot and map itself to the underlying robot's kinematics.

The Application

Cellul.A.R.Skin offers a unique solution to current industry difficulties in so-called collaborative workspaces, meaning workspaces, in which robots share and move into a common space with a human worker. It is easy to see the danger, where robot arms injure their human co-worker.

With our sensor technology, your machinery is enabled to perceive its environment directly at the potential contact points where other technologies fail:
  • Faster Machine Movement: Since your machine recognizes any potential collision prior to contact, you can have it move faster than with competing contact based technologies e.g. joint sensors.
  • Whole Surface Emergency Stop: Do not only have a single emergency button meters away. With our skin, the whole surface can be configured to trigger a safety stop on a hard pound on any part of the robot body.
  • No Fencing: Since even heavy machines can now be built safe for a human, you don't need to put them behind bars anymore. You save valuable space and limit assembly line complexity.
Intuitive Handling
Use our technology to make your machines more interactive. Here are some application cases:
  • Teach-In: Have your guys from operations teach and guide your machines by intuitive touches.
  • Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance: Have your machines in collaborative workspaces recognize and avoid obstacles ("coffee cup") dynamically.
  • Visual Feedback: Have your machines report their states of operation not only on some far-away monitor, but directly on the body areas that matter. Have them display safe zones, indicate intended movement directions, or even display whole user menues directly on the body.
See it in Action

The Team


Dr.-Ing. Christoph Söllner

Dr.-Ing.Philipp Mittendorfer

Dipl.-Kfm. Dominik Doll
  • About Chris: He's the geek in our team and loves to dive deep. His job is to maintain the cells' firmware, put up software interfaces to other machinery and help with integration of all the different technical requirements. Chris holds a Ph.D. in network and communications engineering.
  • About Philipp: He has been spending the last five years on the developement of our skin technology. In his Ph.D. thesis, he explained the theoretical ground works for tactile interaction with robots. Philipp holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering.
  • About Dominik: In every team, there's got to be somebody keeping in touch with the outside world and handle the administration. Dominik holds a Diploma in business administration.
Dr.-Ing. Philipp Mittendorfer, Dorfstraße 11, 82327 Tutzing
Phone: +49 (152) 28824835, eMail: philipp.mittendorfer@gmx.de