BioRob – inherent safe lightweight robotics

Company: Bionic Robotics GmbH


Address: Robert-Bosch-Str. 7, 64293 Darmstadt, Germany

Contact: Jan Röhlinger (Tel: +49 6151 2767285, Roehlinger(at)


Company profile:

Employees: 7

Location: Darmstadt, Germany

Offered products:

„A robot may not injure a human being [...]“ Isaac Asimov, 1st Law of Robotics, 1942 We here at Bionic Robotics have always felt a strong obligation to adhere to the Laws of Robotics. And for a good reason: Conventional robotic arms unfortunately have the design-related tendency to be a threat to human employees.

Our BioRob lightweight robot is completely different – not to say revolutionary. It stands out due to its unique passive safety concept. This concept is so comprehensive that the trade association (German Berufsgenossenschaft) certified it for use together with humans without requiring further safety measures such as any type of sensors. Its elastic, flexible design as well as the fact that it is oriented towards humans makes it a perfect co-worker.

Thanks to its intuitive Teach-in programming and its low weight, it also is completely flexible. If you like, it can work in a different place every day.

BioRob is an efficient partner in the production chain and thus the ideal supplement for manual work stations.

BioRob was rewarded with the renowned EUROP/EURON Robotics Technology Transfer Award for “outstanding innovations in robot technology and automation” in April 2009

Addressed sectors and markets:

BioRob has a very successful role model: With regard to its dimensions, as well as to its speed of movement, it takes the human arm as an example. Its elastic safety concept allows for a load of up to 500 g. Thanks to its outstanding properties, BioRob is specialized for the automation of changing handling tasks with small and medium lot sizes.

Therefore Bionic Robotics is targeting markets and applications.

  • with frequently changing production lines and circumstances such as SMEs

  • where humans and robots can complements one another with their strengths within the production line

Examples are:

  • palletizing work pieces or finished products

  • loading or unloading machines

  • testing or inspection tasks

  • lab automation

biorob with samples (left), biorob without cover (right)


Technology Description:


The main design objective of the BioRob arm is high collision safety for high speed physical human-robot interaction (pHRI) and applications with payloads of up to 0.5kg. This enables high performance applications with close human-robot cooperation, such as pick-and-place applications with cycle times as achieved by the human arm. The robot arm design combines both radical lightweight design based on tendon actuation as well as series elasticity between the geared motors and the joints realized by integrated springs in the tendons. Due to the antagonistic pulley actuation, most of the robot’s mass can be located at the base of the robot arm. This results in low inertia and allows for installing less powerful and smaller motors and transmission elements reducing the mass of the robot arm significantly. The springs dynamically decouple the link and motor inertia, thereby increasing the safety properties of the robot arm and also protecting the geared motors and the tendons from force peaks.


Conventional robots with payloads of up to 5 kg and a similar range usually have a dead weight of five or even ten times bigger than the payload. This is due to the massive construction in order to avoid any inaccuracy of the robot. Thanks to the lightweight design the BioRob arm has deadweight of 6 kg, depending on the model. This is possible because the motors and the drives are placed in the basis of the robot. Therefore there aren't any heavy parts in the arm itself. The antagonistic design relieves the structure and allows lowering the deadweight even more.


BioRob’s safety has been certified – this was confirmed in a type examination performed by the trade association according to Machine Directive 2006/42/EG. Its contact force in case of collision is definitely harmless, making costly cordons, light barriers and cells a thing of the past for you. This makes BioRob – besides its other numerous advantages – a key factor for an optimal and efficient use of robots. Safe cooperation of man and machine opens up many countless new and flexible possibilities for automation. Create your future with BioRob!


Due to its low weight and the simple and intuitive programming, it can be installed at different positions within a few minutes and it can be easily optimized for specific process requirements and put into operation. Your advantage: BioRob’s simple operation and its innovative safety concept make intense training of employees and expensive safety enclosures superfluous. This fact alone makes it outstanding in comparison to conventional robot systems. In addition to that, its low acquisition and operating costs ensure quick amortization of the investment. Thus the cooperation of man and machine leads to efficient production and enables optimized and calculable results. BioRob therefore becomes a universal employee in your production process.

Technical Data

  • Number of swivel joints: 4-5

  • Bearing load: 800 g Nominal load up to 500 g in cooperative operation

  • Repeat accuracy: up to +/- 0,2 mm

  • Robot weight: ca. 6 kg incl. control

  • Energy consumption: nominal 40 W

  • Power supply: 12 V

  • Controls: EtherCat-Bus system / Real-time-Linux

  • Interfaces: Intuitive GUI, C/C++, API, ROS, Digitale I/O

  • Installation surface: Ø 140 mm

  • Safety concept: passive safety due to low robot weight and elasticity in passive drive

  • Safety certifi cate: German Trade Association

  • Cleanroom classification: ISO 1 as option


  • biorob product folder (PDF)



biorob palletizing
biorob joint (left), biorob in case (right)


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