Unleashing the power of AI-driven hand movement analysis for enhanced process control
As part of the big PLCnext Technology Beehyve campaign, a team of Phoenix Contact engineers designed a smart tracking system. The idea behind this concept was to create a setup, which would be able to monitor the movements of the beekeeper while going about standard beekeeping procedures such as checking on the honeycombs.
Especially for inexperienced beekeepers, it could be helpful to provide them with some sort of ideal or standardized way of executing these regular tasks. Not only to save time but to avoid mistakes. And when dealing with hundreds or thousands of bees with quite harmful stings, mistakes ought to be avoided at all costs.
Cameras with AI sensors were installed atop the beehive so they could monitor the hand movements of the beekeeper accurately. Through an app, which was developed in collaboration with codecentric, the team was able to set marks on the phalanxes of the beekeepers’ hands.
This way it is possible to track and record each hand gesture that the beekeeper carries out while executing his/her tasks. From analyzing these recorded movements by many different beekeepers, assumptions could be made as to how to improve the setup of the beehive or the motions of the beekeeper to optimize each task.
Adaption to industrial world
This system of monitoring and analyzing hand movements could just as well be implemented to improve the quality control for example in production line settings. By comparing the hand gestures of various workers, it becomes obvious, which is the most efficient way to complete a task. Also, the analysis of hand movements could make the managing personnel aware of how to better align certain tools or parts at any given production workstation to improve the efficiency of that station. Additionally, it could be helpful to monitor hand movements in highly sensitive workplaces such as chemical plants so that accidents due to human error can be minimized by immediately notifying the worker at hand or by sounding an alarm.
There are numerous other ways of how industrial workplaces could benefit from utilizing this hand movement tracking system. Our team of experts is eager to continue to explore on new ideas to make work better and more efficient.