Digital Innovation Hubs Digital Innovation Hubs

Robotics Digital Innovation Hub Robotica Española: Digital Innovation Hub en Robótica

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Contact Data

Coordinator (University)

University of Seville

Coordinator website

Year Established



Escuela Tecnica Superior de Ingenieria, Camino de los Descubrimientos, s/n, 41092 Sevilla, 41092, Seville (Spain)


Social Media

Contact information

Prof. Anibal Ollero Baturone



The main objective of this Digital Innovation Hub is to offer services contributing to facilitate and accelerate the integration of robotic technologies in different sectors by integrating actors in the entire value chain including research and technology developers, system integrators and end-users.

The DIH services are provided by non-profit organizations.Both public and private actors are being integrated to contribute to the digitalization of industry and services through robotics. Application areas include Inspection and Maintenance, Production, Healthcare and Agri-food.

The robotics hub provides access to research results and best practices, experimentation infrastructures, pilots and demonstrators. Support of experiments and mentoring is also offered to increase the Technology Readiness Level of existing technologies. The dissemination activities include the organisation of specialized workshops

Services also include training, as well as assessment about standards, related regulations, and funding sources.

El objetivo principal de este Digital Innovation Hub es ofrecer servicios que contribuyan a facilitar y acelerar la integración de tecnologías robóticas en diversos sectores, mediante la integración de actores en toda la cadena de valor, incluidos generadores de conocimiento (como universidades y centros tecnológicos), integradores de sistemas y usuarios finales.

Los servicios del DIH son prestados por organizaciones sin ánimo de lucro. Colaboran tanto actores públicos como privados para contribuir a la digitalización de la industria y los servicios a través de la robótica. Las áreas de aplicación incluyen inspección y mantenimiento, producción, salud y agroalimentación.

El DIH en robótica proporciona acceso a resultados de investigación y a las mejores prácticas, a infraestructuras de experimentación, a experiencias pilotos y a demostradores. También ofrece soporte para experimentos y monitorización para aumentar el nivel de maduración de las tecnologías existentes. Las actividades de difusión incluyen la organización de talleres especializados, entre otras acciones.

Los servicios también incluyen capacitación, así como evaluación de estándares, asesoramiento en cuanto regulaciones relacionadas y fuentes de financiación.

Link to national or regional initiatives for digitising industry

In the following,  regional, national and European Initiatives with strong participation of the Hub are mentioned. The RIS strategies of the Region and many H2020 and FP7 projects with  members of our Hub are also mentioned.


Andalusia Region has a global digitalization program called “Andalusia is digital” based on three pillars: citizens, enterprises and entrepreneurship, and local authorities. Digitising industry is included in the second pillar. Andalusian Action Plan for Digital Enterprises (PAED)  supports Andalusian enterprises in their digitalization process to improve their competitiveness and to promote the use of the new technologies. The members of the Robotics Digital Innovation HUB are directly involved in the technology projects promoted under the framework of this Plan. On the other hand, the Innovation Agency of Andalusia,  together with the Andalusian Technological Corporation (CTA), which is member of the  DIH, also improve the competitiveness of the industry though the funding of different R&D & innovation projects that includes the application of robotics and automation to the Andalusian  industry. Other members of the DIH,  such as CETEMET or CATEC, have been directly involved in the design of the Industrial Andalusian Plan,  which includes different enabling technologies, as robotic, automation, sensors, Internet of Things (IoT) etc.

Current examples of projects with regional funds are AEROEMPRENDE (Junta de Andalucía, Consejería de Economía y Conocimiento, Secretaría General de Economía) with the participation of FADA-CATEC, “Precision Agriculture using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles” (Junta de Andalucía, Consejería de Agricultura, Pesca y Desarrollo rural) with the participation of FADA-CATEC, the CTA project SAAIC with the participation of GRVC-Univ.Sevilla and FADA-CATEC, and the project MOCHUELO of FADA-CATEC funded by “Diputacion de Jaén” for the application of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for the surveillance of oil-tree fields

The members of the HUB are also active in projects funded by other Regions. Thus, for example, NAVANTIA and FADA-CATEC are also working in Galicia. Particularly, FADA-CATEC is collaborating with the Fundación Instituto Tecnológico de Galicia (ITG) for  the development of hardware and software in the framework of the “Civil UAV´s Initiative”, funded by the  Xunta de Galicia to promote development and competitiveness in aeronautic industries.

Furthermore, the members  of the DIH are very active in the dissemination of the enabling technologies. For example, in February 2018, a workshop was organized by CTA and the Regional government focused on Robotics and Autonomous systems,  Big Data, IoT, and Cybertechnology. In this Workshop the coordinator of the DIH presented the last robotics and automation developments results of the most important European projects carry out in Horizon 2020 and FP7 projects.


DIH is also aligned with RIS 3 strategies. During the elaboration of the RIS3 strategy the director of FADA was selected as expert for the Technical Committee of the elaboration of the strategy. Priority 2 of the RIS 3 Andalucía is the consolidation of the advanced industry which is aligned with the activity of the HUB related to transport, which includes explicitly Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Unmanned Ground Vehicles and other  automation and robotic technologies related to aerospace industry, new material and new industrial processes (as rapid manufacturing).  


At national level, the Robotic Digital innovation HUB has been included in the extended working group of the initiative “Connected industry 4.0” leaded by Spanish Ministry of Industry, in special in the Digital Innovation Hub extended working group.

The members of the Digital Innovation HUB are very active in the National Research, Development and Innovation projects in the framework of Industry 4.0 including the industrial Programmes RETOS-COLABORACIÓN (Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities), CIEN (Ministry of Industry, Economy and Competitiveness), INNTERCONECTA (CDTI, Ministry of Industry, Economy and Competitiveness) and other PDI-CDTI  (Ministry of Industry, Economy and Competitiveness).

Examples directly related to the Hub are:  INSPECTOR CIEN project in which the University of Seville and Drone tools are participating  with other industries (TSK, DIAGNOSTIQA) to develop applications of aerial robotics to inspection and maintenance; the RETOS-COLABORACION ICDRON with FADA-CATEC and GRVC-Univ.Seville together with other companies (ELIMCO; EMASESA) for the robotics inspection of sewerage, the INNTERCONECTA CENTAURO project of FADA-CATEC with AERNNOVA and AIRGROUP for the robotic drilling of aero-structures and aeronautic pipes, the INNTERCONECTA APOLO with the participation of FADA-CATEC for the development of a robotic system for the measurement of large CFRP parts for aeronautic applications, and the INNTERCONECTA CITIUS led by NAVANTIA with the participation of GRVC-Univ. Seville for the coordination of autonomous aerial and ground systems.


The participation in FP7 and, particularly, H2020 projects is vey intensive.

GRVC -University of Seville was the Associated Coordinator of the FP7 CONET Network of Excellence and the FP7 PLANET project dealing with aerial and ground robots and applications to environment protection and airport automation. FADA-CATEC participated as Associated partner in CONET and as partner in PLANET.

FADA-CATEC was the coordinator institution of the robotics FP7 ARCAS, and the head of the GRVC-Univ. Sevilla was the coordinating person. ARCAS contributed to the emergence of aerial manipulation developing the first aerial robots with multi-joint arms in the world. In the same way, FADA-CATEC was also the coordinator institution of the FP7 EC-SAFEMOBIL, and the head of GRVC-Univ.Sevilla the coordinating person of this project that developed worldwide first technologies in the landing of helicopters and fixed-wing UAVs on mobile platforms and the safe multi-target tracking with multiple UAVs.

Moreover FADA-CATEC was partner of the FP7 Galileo project FIELDCOPTER on the uses of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Precision Agriculture.

From 2015 GRVC-Univ.Sevilla  coordinates the H2020 AEROARMS on aerial robots with multiple arms for applications in oil and gas industries and FADA-CATEC  is also participating in the project. A development of this project has been recently awarded with the Overall Information and Communication Technologies Innovation Radar Prize 2017 of the European Commission. Moreover, the AEROARMS coordinator,  who is also the DIH coordinator, has been also elected between the three European innovators of the year being candidate to the European personalities of the year.

Moreover, GRVC-Univ.Sevilla  and FADA-CATEC are partners of the H2020 AEROBI on the application of aerial robots with arms to bridge inspection, of the H2020 training network Marine UAS on Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Systems for Marine and Coastal Monitoring,  and of  the aerial robotic project ARCOW within Challenge 3 of EUROC. Additionally, from the beginning of 2017,  GRVC participates in the H2020 project MULTIDRONE, dealing with teams of multiple drones for media production, particularly in tasks of multi-robot decision-making, collision avoidance and perception. From December 2017 GRVC-Univ.Sevilla is participating in the H2020 TERRINET project on robotic infrastructures.

From January 2018 GRVC-University of Seville and FADA-CATEC are participating (with the GRVC leader as deputy coordinator) in the project H2020 HYFLIER on the design and development of an hybrid robot, with flying and rolling capabilities, for the inspection of oil and gas industries. Moreover, from April 2018, GRVC-Univ. Sevilla  is participating in the H2020 Galileo project GAUSS dealing with Remotely Piloted Aerial Vehicles and Aerial Robots. From June 2018 both GRVC-Univ. Sevilla and FADA-CATEC are participating in the H2020 SAFEDRONE SESAR project on the integration in aerial spaces of low level flying remotely piloted aerial vehicles and mobile robots.

Moreover from September 2018 both GRVC-University of Seville and FADA-CATEC will be participating in the H2020 RESIST on the application of aerial robotic systems to increase the resilience of European transport infrastructures (Mobility for Grow). Also GRVC-Univ. Sevilla and CTA will be participating in the  WideSpread  H2020 AeRoTWIN for spreading excellence in Aerial Robotics.

In November it will also start the Advanced Grant of the European Research Council with acronym GRIFFIN, also dealing with aerial robotic manipulators, which was recently awarded to the Coordinator of the Hub and leader of the GRVC-University of Seville.

Finally, in August it has been known the approval of the  H2020 Digital Innovation Hub RIMA (Robotics for Infrastructure Inspection and Maintenance) with the participation of both GRVC-Univ. Sevilla and FADA-CATEC.


As pointed out above, it has been recently published the results of the H2020 Call H2020-DT-2018-2020 (Digitising and transforming European industry and services: digital innovation hubs and platforms), Topic: DT-ICT-02-2018. Both the GRVC-University of Seville and FADA-CATEC are included in the approved Digital Innovation Hub RIMA (Robotics for Infrastructure Inspection and Maintenance).


Market and Services

Market sectors

  • Agriculture, hunting and forestry
  • Mining and quarrying
  • Electricity, gas and water supply
  • Transport, storage and communication
  • Education
  • Manufacture of food products, beverages and tobacco
  • Manufacture of coke, refined petroleum products and nuclear fuel
  • Manufacture of chemicals, chemical products and man-made fibres
  • Manufacture of other non-metallic mineral products
  • Manufacture of basic metals and fabricated metal products
  • Manufacture of machinery and equipment
  • Manufacture of transport equipment
  • Other Manufacturing

TRL Focus

  • TRL6 - System/subsystem model or prototype demonstration in a relevant environment
  • TRL7 - System prototype demonstration in an operational environment

Services provided

  • Collaborative Researchs
  • Concept validation and prototyping
  • Testing and validation
  • Education and skills development

Service Examples

Aerial robotic system for logistic uses in manufacturing processes

Client organisation: AIRBUS

Client needs: Productivity improvement through automation and reduction of errors & time of operation in specific aerostructure manufacturing tasks.

Provided solution by the DIH:

The University of Seville and FADA-CATEC provide support to the company AIRBUS DS in the development of a system in the framework of the EUROC Challenge 3 (FP7), which is the first aerial robotic system used in manufacturing processes. The ARCOW (Aerial Robotic Coworker) is able to perform in an autonomous way of light goods that involve hundreds of small parts required in aircraft manufacturing. The delivery of these goods traditionally generates many displacements of the workers between storage facilities and the assembly positions. Moreover, the ARCOW system is also able to perform the localization and identification of some goods that can cause Foreign Object Damage (FOD) when forgotten by workers inside aerostructures. This application has been selected as one of the two finalists of Challenge 3 between 35 European teams and has already received  the "Best drone based application"   in the First EU Drone Award.

More details:

General Support Services

Client organisation: Vodafone, Dronetools, Zero2infintive, etc…

Client needs: Development of prototypes, manufacturing of special parts and subsystems, , testing UAS systems, etc.

Provided solution by the DIH:

The HUB provides the following different kind of support to SME and other enterprises:

  • Looking for funding support for SME and other companies
  • Information about Research and Innovation project calls with public and private funds. In particular, CTA provides private funds to projects related to technologies such as robotics, rapid manufacturing, IoT, etc.
  • Demonstrators and testbed facilities available for industry such as FADA-CATEC indoor test-bed.
  • Increasing TRL of existing technologies through research and innovation projects
  • Available experimentation infrastructures, such as the ATLAS facility for RPAS of FADA-CATEC (more details at
  • Organization of dissemination activities such as workshops on relevant technologies, exhibitions, international conferences, and other related events.
  • Catalog of Services and validated technologies
  • Training on robotics, RPAS, automation and others
  • Mentoring of new spin-offs and other companies.

More details:

Aerial system for sewer inspection

Client organisation: EMASESA,

Client needs: Increase the safety of the employees and reduce the cost of the inspection and maintenance of water networks, and particularly wastewater networks.

Provided solution by the DIH:

The University of Seville and FADA-CATEC are working on the development of a system for sewer inspection of the company EMASESA, which is in charge of the inspection and maintenance of water and waste management in Seville.

More details:

Aerial robotics technologies to the inspection of solar power plants, confined spaces, including internal inspection of tanks, and gas pipes.

Client organisation: Dronetools

Client needs: Design and integration of aerial robotics technologies to the inspection of solar power plants, confined spaces, including internal inspection of tanks, and gas pipes

Provided solution by the DIH:

The SME DRONETOOLS, manufacturer of Drones, is receiving the support of the University of Seville in the Spanish CIEN project INSPECTOR devoted to the application of aerial robotics technologies to the inspection of solar power plants, confined spaces, including internal inspection of tanks, and gas pipes. The University of Seville is developing prototypes and subsystems to be integrated in the Drontool platforms.

More details:


Organizational form

(part of) Public organization (part of RTO, or university)



Number of employees


Evolutionary Stage

Fully operational

Geographical Scope



  • European Regional Development Fund
  • National basic research funding
  • National specific innovation funding
  • Regional funding
  • Private funding
  • Horizon 2020


Number of customers annually


Type of customers

  • Start-up companies
  • SMEs (<250 employees)
  • MidCaps (between €2-10 billion turnover)
  • Large companies, multi-nationals
  • Research organisations



Partner Type

Large enterprise



Partner Type

Large enterprise


Technological Corporation of Andalusia

Partner Type

Networked, cluster organization


Ghenova Ingeniería

Partner Type

Large enterprise


Andalusian Foundation for Aerospace Development (FADA)

Partner Type

Research & Technology organization


University of Malaga

Partner Type



CETEMET. Metalmechanic and Transport Technology Center

Partner Type

Research & Technology organization


Technological competences

  • Sensors, actuators, MEMS, NEMS, RF
  • Robotics and autonomous systems
  • Artificial Intelligence and cognitive systems
  • Interaction technologies (e.g. human-machine Interaction, motion recognition and language technologies)
  • Augmented and virtual reality, visualization
  • Simulation and modelling
  • Software as a service and service architectures
  • Additive manufacturing (3D printing)
  • Laser based manufacturing
Last updated: 11/09/19 10:29