Automotive

Ford's robotic butt simulates a decade of sitting in a Fiesta

Pleased with the success of its testing in the Fiesta, Ford says the Robutt is now being put to work in all Ford vehicles across Europe
Pleased with the success of its testing in the Fiesta, Ford says the Robutt is now being put to work in all Ford vehicles across Europe
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Pleased with the success of its testing in the Fiesta, Ford says the Robutt is now being put to work in all Ford vehicles across Europe
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Pleased with the success of its testing in the Fiesta, Ford says the Robutt is now being put to work in all Ford vehicles across Europe
The so-called Robutt is based on the dimensions of an average large man
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The so-called Robutt is based on the dimensions of an average large man
Durability engineers at Ford tasked with putting the Fiesta's new seats through its paces have been lent a helping hand
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Durability engineers at Ford tasked with putting the Fiesta's new seats through its paces have been lent a helping hand
Ford engineers look on as the Robutt goes to work
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Ford engineers look on as the Robutt goes to work

Durability engineers at Ford tasked with putting the Fiesta's new seats through its paces have been lent a helping hand, courtesy of a robot designed to replicate the jiggle of a human butt.

The so-called Robutt is based on the dimensions of an average large man and was trained to simulate how drivers and passengers get in and out of car seats. By planting its robo-behind on the Fiesta's leather over and over, the engineers were able to build pressure maps that tell a tale of wear and tear over time.

And time was the chief concern when it comes to motivation for the Robutt. Ford says that over a decade, a human user will hop in and out of the seat 25,000 times, a period of usage that Robutt is able to simulate in three short weeks.

The so-called Robutt is based on the dimensions of an average large man
The so-called Robutt is based on the dimensions of an average large man

"From the first moment we get into a car, the seat creates an impression of comfort and quality," said Svenja Froehlich, a durability engineer, at Ford's European HQ, in Cologne, Germany. "Previously, we used pneumatic cylinders that simply moved up and down. With the 'Robutt,' we are now able to replicate very accurately how people really behave."

Pleased with the success of its testing in the Fiesta, Ford says the Robutt is now being put to work in all Ford vehicles across Europe. You can see it in action in the video below.

Source: Ford

Cheeky Robot Test Helps Ensures Seats Are Built to Last

2 comments
Mobi
Sorry but this is nothing new and not invented by Ford in Cologne. I saw 2 of these robots (also from Kuka) at Johnson Controls near Cologne, Number one in Seating business world wide (now renamed ADIENT) about 10 years ago. They were used for all customer projects, not only Ford's... with pressure mapping and everything as described here. The only claim Ford may have on this is the "Robbut" name.
Mallysh
Company name changed to Adient after a spinn off last year but Mobi is right!
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