Human-Machine Safety Assurance

In sophisticated manufacturing environments, humans often must interact and negotiate space with machines on the shop floor. Special care and attention are required when interacting with robots, as they have a greater range of motion – for example, with their robotic arms or, in the case of autonomous mobile robots, considering their movement around the shop floor. In these contexts, worker safety is paramount and must always be assured.

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Challenge: Ensuring Human Safety


  • The assurance of human safety, however, presents significant challenges. One is the sheer number of possible scenarios to consider. For example, humans may approach the machine from different angles, at different locations on the shop floor, and at different production times.
  • Another obstacle is deciding how a robot should react once one of the considered scenarios is encountered. It must determine which of the several potential courses of action maximizes safety in the present context.
  • Finally, the implementation of these responses should still encourage the manufacturing processes to operate as productively as possible.


Need: A Systematic Approach

  • To provide the necessary level of health and safety assurance, a systematic approach must be adopted.
  • This includes listing, analyzing, and classifying all relevant machine safety scenarios, developing effective human reaction strategies, and considering manufacturing constraints.
  • Ideally, the safety approach is verified by independent contributors to ensure that no critical aspects have been overlooked.

Solution: Providing a Safety Assurance System

This systematic approach is packaged as a safety concept, including a domain-specific framework for carrying out the analysis and a customized safety solution to address the system’s needs. The analysis, development, and the final solution are thoroughly documented and validated.

Our other core competencies

In addition to Human-Machine Safety Assurance, we also focus on the following topics:

Adaptive and Optimized Behavior

Flexible & Reliable Software Service Platform


Automation Systems

In manufacturing, automation is crucial to ensure the quality and efficiency of production processes. Visit Automation Systems to learn more about our focus areas and the various projects Fraunhofer IKS is working on.

System Evaluation & Engineering

Trustworthy & Dependable AI Applications

Blog articles on Human-Machine Safety Assurance

Read more about Human-Machine Safety Assurance on our Safe Intelligence Blog:


Human-Robot Interaction / 25.7.2023

“So that robots know what to do”

Leaving cooperative, heterogeneous robots alone in unstructured environments isn’t such a good idea. After all, only with an AI-powered management solution will they be able to solve complex tasks without causing any damage. The Fraunhofer IKS is working on developing such a system.


Automated Guided Vehicles How robots in warehouses operate safely and efficiently / 5.8.2021

Automated Guided Vehicles How robots in warehouses operate safely and efficiently

A simulation designed by Fraunhofer IKS paves the way for robots and humans to interact safely — without reducing efficiency.