The Evolvement of Manufacturing Automation
With the advancement in technology in the recent years, the automation of manufacturing process through the use of manufacturing robots has significantly evolved. These advancements include artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, robotics, big data and machine running. All this are aimed at improving the production processes in the manufacturing industry. Additionally, most manufacturing robots has been developed and programmed to be collaborative robots. These cobots work closely with humans without posing any danger to them. They improve efficiency rather than taking over the jobs completely.
Below are some of the technological trends that are impacting the development of manufacturing automation.
Robotics as a service(RaaS)
This involves the rental or temporary acquiring a hardware to manage the cost of production. This is a trend that has allowed the penetration and utilization of manufacturing robots in the process of production. Renting of this hardware increases the efficiency and effectiveness of the manufacturing robots. They can be rented on a monthly or quarterly basis.
The Raas provider could handle the integration between the databases, used in the enterprise, and the manufacturing robots. The provider could also handle the maintenance of the robots. The benefits to reap from this includes; greater flexibility, easier management and cost savings. Moreover, startups and midsize operations are now able to effectively operate and maintain their crucial systems and also reduce the need of hiring costly teams.
Older systems upgrade
Automation of the manufacturing process does not only include utilization of new technologies but also the upgrading of the older systems for effectiveness. Older manufacturing robots are being upgraded to make them more efficient and accessible by adding new controls and making them more compact. The improvement of the manufacturing robots is a form of cost saving and quality use of the factory space.
Development of cobots
In the past, most manufacturing robots could not work hand in hand with humans. This led to the development of collaborative robots which are also known as cobots. The cobots are more versatile and can work in close proximity with humans without harming them. The cobots are more agile hence can be deployed to perform more tasks. Since they are smaller, they allow for proper utilization of the manufacturing floor.
Moreover, AI and machine learning platforms support the cobots to make them perform more advanced tasks hence increase their effectiveness.
The utilization of cobots allow people to perform more satisfying jobs and leave the dangerous and repetitive work to the cobots.
Emergence of Industrial Internet of Things(IIOT)
The IIOT, makes the hardware faster, smarter and more aware. They allow manufacturers to gain real time insights. Some systems may be crafted to store and analyze the factory’s data, this is later distributed to the other connected devices. With this, the manufacturing robots grow and improve consistently thereby becoming more efficient.
The manufacturing robots could be combined with IIOT sensors which are connected to a larger network. This allows for communication with the other connected devices. Furthermore, the manufacturing robots are now able to work more intelligently by being designed to collaborate with other robots during the production process.
Benefits of the manufacturing robots
The technological advancements in the manufacturing robots has made them smarter, faster and cheaper. The utilization of this technology by companies in conjunction with their employees provides great benefits to the company. Below are the top three benefits of utilizing manufacturing robots.
Creation of new and better employment opportunities.
Workers can learn how to program, operate and maintain the manufacturing robots rather than being involved in performing dangerous or unsuitable tasks.
Manufacturing robots performs their tasks in a precise manner and with great consistency than humans. They are effective in performing repetitive tasks. Therefore, they are able to produce products of high quality consistently.
Rather than outsourcing costly personnel to perform the tasks, smaller companies can acquire manufacturing robots to perform several tasks at a lower cost and still produce high quality products. This allows them to compete effectively even with the larger companies.
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