• Presenting

    TRUMPF Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH

Project summary

SoSta – Sorter and Stacker for the sheet metal fabrication

Sheet metal parts have a high variety and are usually cut out from a large sheet, containing different orders and parts. Those different parts need to be sorted and stacked in separate groups depending on their following processes.

The goal of this project is to determine, whether an automated handling is possible for a large variety of sheet metal parts, thereby examining the limits of current computer vision and grasping technologies.


TRUMPF is distinguished for technical innovations in all of its fields of operation and for its tradition as well. The history of TRUMPF shows that, since its foundation in 1923, new ideas, continuity and consistent internationalization have been the hallmarks of the company's development.

Diversification plays an important role, too. TRUMPF has constantly expanded its product fields not only through acquisitions in bending, electronics and medical technology, but also through its own developments, such as the laser.

TRUMPF plays a decisive role in the broad industrial application of the laser - in almost any field directly or indirectly. From the first use for the welding of watch springs to the latest trends in micro and macro processing - the success of the laser is partially due to the success of TRUMPF. 

Contribution from RTOs

Fraunhofer IPA

  • Design and construction of a suitable gripper
  • Testing an object detection algorithm based on 3D point clouds
  • Implementing a combined solution of 2D and 3D computer vision algorithms
  • Execution of grasping experiments



  • Design and construction of a suitable gripper
  • Testing an object detection algorithm based on 2D images
  • Execution of grasping experiments

Impact (expected)

We expect to have a clear understanding of the current limitations (if existing) of automated bin picking of a large variety of different sheet metal parts.

Based on these, a roadmap can be created to develop and install a prototype robot cell for automated sheet metal handling. If the prototype proves to be reliable, fully automated machines (e.g. robot bending cells) will become far more attractive due to the possibility of automatic loading from bulk.