Automatic Control

Faculty of Engineering, LTH

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FlexiFab—Flexible fabrication of lightweight aluminum structuresaims to create an automated robotic system to enable Frictions stir welding (FSW) of aluminium components.

The FlexiFab project has received funding from the European Union's  Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. FP7-SME-2014-2-606156-FLEXIFAB. 

Researchers: Rolf Johansson, Anders Robertsson, Fredrik Bagge Carlson, Martin Holmstrand, and Martin Karlsson together with Klas Nilsson and Mathias Haage at CS.

The FlexiFab system will provide the following key competitive advantages to the European welding Industry

  • Enable European fabricators, metal-workers and welding companies to effectively compete in the growing use of aluminium alloys in the light-weight transport sector.
  • Capitalising on the increasing pressure to replace traditional iron and steel material with aluminium alloys to reduce weight and thus fuel consumption of vehicles, trains, ships/boats and aeroplanes.
  • Reduce the costs associated with the fabrication of aluminium structures, especially focussed on components used within the transport sectors.


RobotLab@Lund will mainly work on the sensor integration, logging for weld status for automated quality asurance  and control system of industrial robots for the frictions stir welding process.

The system will use friction stir welding technology (FSW), invented by one of the project partners, TWI, in the beginnining of the 1990s. The welding method offers a number of benefits for aluminium joining/welding such as

Project aims

  • Excellent weld mechanical properties.
  • A mechanised repeatable process.
  • No special pre-weld edge profiling or cleaning required.
  • No shielding gas required.
  • Low distortion and shrinkage due to solid-state nature of welding process.
  • Welding in any position.
  • High efficiency processing with very low energy consumption.
  • Ability to weld the ‘non-weldable’ aluminium alloys such as the 2000 and 7000 series
  • Operator Health & Safety benefits:
    • No harmful welding fumes or hot metal spatter.
    • No UV radiation hazards.

FlexiFab dissemination material

Click here to download the FlexiFab press release (2016 version)

Click here to download the FlexiFab poster

Click here to download the FlexiFab trifold


Fredrik Bagge Carlson: "Modeling and Estimation Topics in Robotics". Licentiate Thesis Department of Automatic Control, Lund University, Sweden, March 2017.

Fredrik Bagge Carlson, Martin Karlsson, Anders Robertsson, Rolf Johansson: "Particle Filter Framework for 6D Seam Tracking Under Large External Forces Using 2D Laser Sensors". In 2016 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), 2016.

Fredrik Bagge Carlson, Rolf Johansson, Anders Robertsson: "Six DOF Eye-to-Hand Calibration from 2D Measurements Using Planar Constraints". In IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems , 2015, 2015.

Fredrik Bagge Carlson, Anders Robertsson, Rolf Johansson: "Modeling and Identification of Position and Temperature Dependent Friction Phenomena without Temperature Sensing". In IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems , 2015, 2015.

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