The students at Ohio Northern University put together an ice cream serving system with two Kuka robots and an Allen Bradley Micrologic 1500 PLC. While this kind of educational automation project may be common in university robot labs across the country, being a big fan of both ice cream and robots I thought I would give a nod to these students’ excellent work. They report that it took 26 students and 5 weeks to fabricate the system including writing all of the code and machining custom effectors. It takes 2 minutes to serve a cup of ice cream complete with spoon and toppings of choice. The students did not want to speed up this cycle time so the user could enjoy “an experience watching the system” and not just get fast ice cream. A nice touch is the way the robot arm moves a little, then lowers the cup under the soft serve machine to produce a nicely shaped point on the top of the ice cream serving. Watch it in action below.