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TOPIC : Effective Industrial Human-Robot Collaboration (RIA)

Topic identifier: DT-FOF-02-2018
Publication date: 27 October 2017
Focus area: Digitising and transforming European industry and services (DT)

Types of action: RIA Research and Innovation action
DeadlineModel:
Opening date:
single-stage
31 October 2017
Deadline: 22 February 2018 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Industrial Leadership
Work Programme Year: H2020-2018-2020
Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Human-Robot Collaboration (HRC) on the factory floor has a high potential economic impact for European industry.

Past research to implement HRC in an industrial setting concentrated largely on safety of humans, allowing workers and robots to share working space without fences. Most of the developments started from existing industrial robotic arms, augmenting it with technologies to make it safe for humans to interact with the robot. This has already led to production environments with safe interaction between humans and robots. However genuine collaboration between humans and robots require more holistic solutions encompassing smart mechatronic systems designed to improve the quality of the job performed and to increase flexible production. Such systems have not yet been demonstrated for manufacturing purposes.

In order to move from a structured factory floor where robots work behind closed fences to an open environment with smart mechatronic systems and humans collaborating closely, interdisciplinary research in the fields of robotics, cognitive sciences and psychology is required, also taking into account regulatory aspects. More attention has to be paid to develop novel inherently-safe robotic concepts where collaboration with humans is taken up already in the design phase. In order for effective HRC to be taken up by industry, beyond safety aspects, including ergonomics, adaptability, liability issues, inclusiveness of vulnerable workers, acceptability and feedback from users need to be considered in a holistic way.

Scope:

Proposals need to extend the current state of the art of individual HRC to work environments where robots and workers function as members of the same team throughout the factory.

Proposals should cover two of the following three areas:

  • Integration in industrial production environments of novel human-centred designed smart mechatronic systems such as for example soft robotics for high payloads;
  • Implementation of novel artificial intelligence technologies capable of massive information processing and reacting in real-time to enable new levels of autonomy, navigation, cognitive perception and manipulation for robots to collaborate with humans in the process;
  • Development of methods for robotic hazard assessment and risk management to clarify trade-offs between productivity and safety for mixed human-robot smart devices environments.

Proposals need also to take into account Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) elements regarding human-related barriers for the uptake of smart mechatronic systems including robot technology in industrial environments such as ergonomics, user experience, comfort, trust, feeling of safety and liability in modern production facilities, taking into account age and gender aspects.

Proposals submitted under this topic should include actions designed to facilitate cooperation with other projects; to enhance user involvement; and to ensure the accessibility and reusability of data produced in the course of the project.

Activities should start at TRL 4 and achieve TRL 6 at the end of the project.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU between EUR 6 and 8 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:
  • Demonstrating the potential to bring back production to Europe;
  • 15% increase in OECD Job Quality Index through work environment and safety improvement;
  • 20% reduction in production reconfiguration time and cost.

Relevant indicators and metrics, with baseline values, should be clearly stated in the proposal.

Cross-cutting Priorities:

Open Innovation
Contractual Public-Private Partnerships (cPPPs)
FoF
Gender
Socio-economic science and humanities

Topic conditions and documents

1. Eligible countries: described in Annex A of the Work Programme.
A number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects. See the information in the Online Manual.

 

2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in Annex B and Annex C of the Work Programme. 

 

Proposal page limits and layout: please refer to Part B of the proposal template in the submission system below.

 

3. Evaluation:

  • Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds are described in Annex H of the Work Programme.  
  • Submission and evaluation processes are described in the Online Manual.

The following exceptions apply:

The threshold for the criteria Excellence and Impact will be 4. The overall threshold, applying to the sum of the three individual scores, will be 12.

Under 3 (a) Proposals are first ranked in separate lists according to the topics against which they were submitted (‘topic ranked lists’). When comparing ex aequo proposals from different topics, proposals having a higher position in their respective 'topic ranked list' will be considered to have a higher priority in the overall ranked list.
Under 3 (b) For all topics and types of action, the prioritisation will be done first on the basis of the score for Impact, and then on that for Excellence.

4. Indicative time for evaluation and grant agreements:

Information on the outcome of evaluation (single-stage call): maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.

 

5. Proposal templates, evaluation forms and model grant agreements (MGA):

Research and Innovation Action:

Specific provisions and funding rates
Standard proposal template
Standard evaluation form
General MGA - Multi-Beneficiary
Annotated Grant Agreement

 

 

6. Additional provisions:

Horizon 2020 budget flexibility
Classified information
Technology readiness levels (TRL) – where a topic description refers to TRL, these definitions apply

 

Members of consortium are required to conclude a consortium agreement, in principle prior to the signature of the grant agreement.

7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions.

Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.

Open access to research data
The Open Research Data Pilot has been extended to cover all Horizon 2020 topics for which the submission is opened on 26 July 2016 or later. Projects funded under this topic will therefore by default provide open access to the research data they generate, except if they decide to opt-out under the conditions described in Annex L of the Work Programme. Projects can opt-out at any stage, that is both before and after the grant signature.

Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they plan to open or share their data, and will not be penalised for opting out.

Open research data sharing applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan.

Projects need to create a Data Management Plan (DMP), except if they opt-out of making their research data open access. A first version of the DMP must be provided as an early deliverable within six months of the project and should be updated during the project as appropriate. The Commission already provides guidance documents, including a template for DMPs. See the Online Manual.

Eligibility of costs: costs related to data management and data sharing are eligible for reimbursement during the project duration.

The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.

 

8. Additional documents:

1. Introduction WP 2018-20
5. Introduction to Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies (LEITs) WP 2018-20
5ii. Nanotechnologies, advanced materials, advanced manufacturing and processing, biotechnology WP 2018-20

General annexes to the Work Programme 2018-2020

Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Regulation of Establishment
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Rules for Participation
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Specific Programme

 

Submission Service

To access the Electronic Submission Service of the topic, please select the type of action that is most relevant to your proposal from the list below and click on the 'Start Submission' button. You will then be asked to confirm your choice of the type of action and topic, as these cannot be changed in the submission system. Upon confirmation you will be linked to the correct entry point.

To access existing draft proposals for this topic, please login to the Participant Portal and select the My Proposals page of the My Area section.

Type of Action Research and Innovation action [RIA]
Topic Effective Industrial Human-Robot Collaboration (RIA) - DT-FOF-02-2018
Guidance on proposal submission: H2020 online manual
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