KUKA Presents Its Open-Source Robotic Operating System at Hannover Messe

April 16, 2021 by Damond Goodwin

During Hannover Messe, KUKA presented its open-source robotic operating system and ecosystem in hopes of becoming an industry standard.

KUKA has brought its new digital ecosystem to the robotics industry. For years, digital ecosystems have been used to help make complex technology accessible for an increasing number of people. These ecosystems use the natural world for inspiration and help participants keep up with our ever-changing technological environment. 


Video used courtesy of KUKA


KUKA’s latest release will soon be used to bring a new level of simplicity to the robotics industry. 


What's in iiQKA.OS  

KUKA’s iiQKA.OS is based on the idea of flexibility and modularity. The system can be easily adapted and updated on an open-source platform, making it a constantly evolving environment. The system is designed to be easy to learn for beginners. 

Easy to learn, adaptable user interfaces make for less steep learning curves and help create a way for robotics to be readily available to anyone. Due to its user-friendly design, workers who are used to more traditional robotics may have an easy transition into iiQKA.OS without needing to relearn a complicated new system.  

iiQKA.OS uses Linux as its core, which helps create a well-supported open-source platform with an extensive range of hardware compatibility. Using security as the main design principle, KUKA integrated Linux for a flexible and robust system that hopes to become the new IT and industry standard.


KUKA LBR iisy cobot

KUKA’s cobot LBR iisy uses the iiQKA.OS. Image used courtesy of KUKA


The new operating system is designed to be modular and flexible. Its modular design allows for large changes in the system that do not affect performance and allows the entire system to remain stable. The iiQKA.OS is a key component in KUKA’s future-proof platform. 

Utilizing application programming interfaces or (APIs) allows for standardized system interaction. With APIs at its backbone, the iiQKA.OS has a comprehensive foundation for offering extended value in an ecosystem. As a web-based interface, many different formats are available to create responsive designs. It also creates a path for easy and fast development of user interfaces and elements. This all leads to an acceleration of scaling and the addition of new features and components.  


iiQKA.OS in the KUKA Ecosystem

iiQKA.OS will form the basis of the new KUKA ecosystem. The ecosystem will help provide access to a robust selection of components, programs, apps, services, and equipment that are easy to install, operate, and enhance the system. KUKA hopes to make robotic automation available to everyone by the year 2030.

With the new operating system, KUKA hopes to bring user-friendly interface technology to the robotics industry. With it, they will be able to make robotics more accessible to customers who haven’t been involved in robotics in the past. The new system will be the cornerstone of the evolving KUKA ecosystem, making for an adaptable platform that won't lose performance with major system changes. The system also creates a unique environment for modular systems that make scalability easier than in the past.