Automated kitchen featuring two-handed robot to make light work of cooking

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UK-based robotics firm, Moley has created the world’s first robotic kitchen – yours for just under £250,000. Featuring an advanced, fully functional ‘two-handed’ robot, the kitchen has been developed with input from the 2011 BBC MasterChef winner, Tim Anderson.

Launched at this week’s GITEX (Gulf Information Technology Exhibition) show in Dubai, the system features a dexterous robot integrated into a luxury kitchen, that prepares freshly cooked meals at the touch of a button.

Moley says the kitchen is the product of six years research and development by an international team of 100 engineers, product and luxury interior designers and three award-winning chefs.

At the heart of the new technology are two robotic arms featuring fully articulated ‘hands’, developed in collaboration with world-leading German robotic company SCHUNK, Moley’s exclusive hand partner. The product of 11 exhaustive development cycles, the robotic arms reliably reproduce the movements of human hands. This means the robot kitchen can retrieve ingredients from the smart fridge, adjust hob temperature, use the sink to fill pans and pour, mix and plate up just as a human cook would. The robot even cleans up after itself – without complaint!

[Image Source: Black Edge Productions]

How does it work?

The Moley Robotics system does not cook like a machine – instead, according to the company, it captures human skills in motion. Tim Anderson, culinary innovator and winner of the prestigious BBC MasterChef competition (2011) played an integral role in the kitchen’s development, with his cooking techniques recorded in 3D and then translated into elegant digital movement using bespoke algorithms.

Anderson and fellow chefs Nicole Pisani and Andrew Clarke have created 30 dishes to showcase the systems’ capabilities at launch, with new recipes to be added every month. Ultimately, customers will be able to select from a digital menu with over 5,000 choices, as well having the option to record their own family favourite dishes using an innovative recipe-creator software tool.

Moley says the kitchen can be used by both humans and robot. Bespoke stainless steel cookware and utensils have been designed to be comfortable to hold, as well as providing a precision fit in robotic hands.

[Image Source: Black Edge Productions]

The Moley Kitchen uses a combination of sensors and optical cameras to map ingredients, cookware and utensils within in the kitchen. Subtle markers on handles and pan lids help the robot orientate the stainless-steel pots, pans, and utensils. The robot’s optical system can even spot dropped food and clean up before and after cooking. An integrated UV lamp ensures the cooking area is kept germ free.

Kitchen options

The kitchen is available in two formats: A smart, Internet of Things (IoT) enabled kitchen (known as ‘R’), with or without the integrated robot – this option includes an IoT refrigerator and storage, which flag when ingredients are about to expire, or are running low, professional-grade induction hob, oven and sink; and a fully automated package (known as ‘X’) with the state-or-the-art robot arms and dexterous hands mounted on an integrated, three-axis rail system.

Customers can also specify from a wide range of premium marbles, onyx and Corian worktops, and select kitchen cabinets in finishes to match the rest of their home decor and styling tastes.

Priced initially at £248,000, Moley’s founder and CEO, Mark Oleynik, expects the cost to gradually reduce as demand increases, and says the company has already received more than 1,200 qualified sales enquiries.

What you are looking at here is the world’s first consumer robotic kitchen,” said Oleynik. “Our luxury fully automated smart kitchen is now on sale, and like all breakthrough technologies – cars, televisions and computers – it will appeal to enthusiasts, professionals and early adopters, and is priced accordingly. We anticipate that our pricing will be reduced significantly over time with production volume, efficiencies and economies of scale, whilst simultaneously enhancing additional functionalities of the product,” he continued.

Whether you love food and want to explore different cuisines, follow a low calorie diet or have special dietary requirements, the Automated Kitchen can do this. Thanks to the recipe sharing platform, home cooks and chefs will be able to upload personalised variations of recipes and save family favourites for everyone to enjoy for years to come. It is not just a labour-saving device – it is a platform for our creativity. It can even teach us how to become better cooks!”

 

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