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Robots & Yachts

This page is sparse because at the moment, despite their monumental cost, there is not a lot of integration between yachts and robotics. If you the reader know of other examples of the use of robotic technology in the maintenance of operation of yachts, please use the Contact Us link below and tell us about it.

One company that uses robots to help build a better yacht is Steve Mortonís Vision East Inc, in Fort Lauderdale Florida.  Holding two patents the company has working prototype of a robotic painting system that does a superior job at painting yacht hulls.  The product, which is the result of over 15 years of research, is also substantially faster than a human painter; at least 25% faster and frequently a good deal faster than that. 

The robot uses a laser at the end of the arm to construct a 3D internal image or map of the hull.  The robot arm uses a spray that it mixes that contains an epoxy fairing compound specifically designed for use by robots.  The compound has chemical properties and a viscosity designed specifically for robotic delivery systems. Next, a milling tool is attached to the robots wrist after the previous tool is removed. Following that, it mills the hull to precision specifications using the internal map it scanned earlier with the laser.  When that operations finishes, a sanding tool is swapped in. The robot now sands the hull while debris is vacuumed out through an opening in the sanding pad.  Finally, a spray tool is used to put the final coatings on the hull.

There is another company that uses robots in the manufacturer of yachts. This company, Feadship America, uses robots to cut steel and aluminum. They donít use them to paint yet, but they are watching Steve Mortonís new company very closely to see how well they do.


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