Five Industries That Are Utilizing Robotic Automation
The world’s first robot named Unimate joined the assembly line of production at the General Motor’s plant in 1961. The robot was an automated die-casting mold, which released auto parts into vats of cooling fluid on production line that moved them towards workers for their final finishing. Robots have continued to revolutionize the industrial environment globally ever since.
Universal Robots is aggressively spearheading this trend by coming up with the new generation robots. These advanced robots known as collaborative robots or cobots, are easy to program and work harmoniously with human workers hence the name collaborative. Unlike the traditional robots, which are restricted to a specific working area, the cobots are very flexible, easy and safe to handle and operate.
Here are five most common industries utilizing robotic automation with the aim of boosting efficiency and convenience.
1. Automotive industry
This sector has greatly relied on industrial robots in fact it is this sector, which paved way for other industries to join in, after the great recession. Since quality and a high level of precision are the key attributes associated with the production activities in this sector, robot use such as the cobots come in handy.
Tasks done by the cobots are, screw driving, labeling, laser cutting and engine foundries. They collaborate with the workers to perform the repetitive and monotonous jobs where some are dangerous to the health and safety of humans. This frees the personnel to perform other tasks hence maximizing productivity and quality in the automotive sector.
2. Industrial Welding
Although manual welding is still ongoing, most welding companies especially the big ones with large production activities, prefer the use of welding robots to achieve high quality results for mass production with minimum human involvement.
One of the most popular forms of welding is the arc welding. Arc-welding robots are common in steel production. Here human operators do the preparatory work while the welding robots handle the parts and perform the welding task.
The welding robots help improve the weld consistency and eliminate the risk associated with the activity. Welding involves using intense heat to connect two metals and this is very risky to humans but not for robots.
The assembly robots are useful in industries that are involved in lean manufacturing tasks. The assembly robots minimize waste and decrease the wait and changeover time while increasing consistency in assembly line tasks.
The packaging and palleting robots are of great assistance in the assembly process. They are fast and efficient in picking and packing products as they come off the assembly line. These robots ensure consistent workflow, save time and minimize labor costs that were previously associated with the manual application.
4. Health care
Medical and pharmaceutical companies have also embraced the use of robotic technology to complete a variety of medical procedures. For example the Gentofte hospital in Denmark has two UR5 robots which are used to optimize the handling and sorting of the blood samples for lab analysis.
The robots have enabled the hospital’s lab to uphold their response time without additional staff despite an increase of 20% of the blood samples requiring analysis. Nowadays 90% of the results are ready in less than an hour after arrival in the lab.
5. Electronic manufacturing
Lately the electronics market has experienced a huge growth sparked by consumers’ ever-growing demand for the latest products such as smartphones, flat screen TVs, computers among other gadgets.
The increase in demand in electronics translates to a high demand in the labor force required. In Germany, for example Beyer Dynamic, which is an audio accessories manufacturer, had to increase their productivity in order to meet the demand. The company invested in a Universal Robot UR5, which handles the glue spraying tasks in the production of pick up speakers. The collaboration between the cobots and the workers increased the company’s production rate by 50%
The advancement of robotic technology by Universal Robots has enabled various industries to increase productivity and profitability by adopting the collaborative robots to automate their industrial processes.