Franka Emika’s Panda is considered the first fully soft-robotics controlled robotic system that is affordable to the masses and has the technical abilities one would expect from such a platform such as safe physical human-robot interaction. This is especially advantageous to medium-sized enterprises and research labs as well as companies with large demands for inspection, testing and assembly. Panda can be programmed on three different levels of abstraction. The user can utilize modular apps for developing tasks via an intuitive web-interface or program custom apps to solve a variety of relevant automation problems. Finally, a real-time capable soft-robotics research interface allows commanding various joint values and receiving full state joint measurements. While the first and second method are especially interesting to the industrial sector, researchers can make use of the research interface to implement and test their own soft-robotics controllers, manipulation learning schemes and motion planning in a well defined environment. Considering the capabilities of the system, its affordability and the already large demand from the research community, Panda is on its way to become a new reference platform for robotics research in manipulation.
In this tutorial we will present the interested researchers and engineers with the know-how to setup, program and execute their own solutions in several technical in-depth presentations and learn from already existing experiences in industry and research.