3DUniversum will be a part of FlexCRAFT project, aiming to develop cognitive robotics for flexible agro food technology. The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) just announced 4 million euros grant for the project bringing together the academic and industrial experts in the field.

About the project: Cognitive Robots for Flexible Agro Food Technology (FlexCRAFT)
Food production must be as hygienic, efficient and sustainable as possible. Furthermore, fewer people are willing to do tedious and heavy work in warm greenhouses or in refrigerated rooms where chicken products are processed, for example. Robots can provide a solution to this problem if they can deal with the considerable variations in shape, size and hardness of different food products. This is still challenging. The programme FlexCRAFT will develop new robot technology for such purposes as the automatic harvesting of tomatoes, for example. The robotics developed must also help with the processing of foodstuffs. Examples of this include the processing and packaging of chicken products, but also neatly packaging bags of crisps and packets of biscuits in boxes of varying sizes.

The Netherlands is the second biggest exporter of agro-food products worldwide and the third biggest supplier of technology for the agro-food sector. This programme will contribute to strengthening the competitive position of the Netherlands in these sectors.

Programme leader: Prof. Eldert van Henten (Wageningen University & Research)
Participants: 3DUniversum, ABB, AgriFoodTech Platform, Aris BV, BluePrint Automation, Cellar Land, Cerescon, Delft University of Technology, Demcon, Eindhoven University of Technology, Festo, GMV, Houdijk Holland, Marel Stork Poultry Processing, Maxon Motor, Priva, Protonic Holland, Rijk Zwaan, University of Amsterdam, University of Twente, Wageningen University & Research

The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) funds top researchers, steers the course of Dutch science by means of research programmes and by managing the national knowledge infrastructure. Each year, NWO awards Perspectief funding to five or six new research programmes that fit within the top sectors. These are areas in which Dutch industry and research centres excel worldwide and want to strengthen their leading position. With Perspectief, NWO challenges researchers and other parties to set up new lines of research that overarch the boundaries of scientific disciplines. Through this large-scale and joint approach, the research partners can achieve far more than if they were to work individually.