Can Small Industrial Robots will Provide Solutions in the Manufacturing Sector?
Automation is fast becoming popular. Still, it ignites fear among many people who think small industrial robots will rob them of their jobs. Entrepreneurs in some industries, however, can use robots to address the increasing labor shortage.
In the US, for instance, there are more than 522,000 available jobs in the manufacturing sector. This trend according to experts will continue in the future and is expected to hit approximately 2.4 million in the late 2020s. This is a clear indication that automation will be an ideal solution for labor shortage.
Understanding the Function of Industrial Robots in Manufacturing
The task of small industrial robots remains limited and has yet to change since they first hit the market. The robotic industry has evolved tremendously and humans can today work in collaboration with robots. Still, caged robots are operational in some industries and some businesses can’t afford the initial investment costs.
Industrial robots have been programmed to execute simple processes at the start and end of the production or assembly line. In automobile assembly, for instance, robots are programmed to execute the same tasks repeatedly on similar positions and orientation parts. Robots can offer tangible labor shortage solutions in the US and other parts of the world.
However, they’ll need to be able to execute a wide range of tasks. Robot manufacturers will need to develop smarter robots that can operate effectively in collaboration with other robots and human workers.
Small industrial robots will also need to comprehend and respond to random changes at speed. Robots will also need to have dimensional awareness, be more proficient, and be able to learn.
How can Small Industrial Robots Bridge the Labor Gap in the Manufacturing Industry?
Currently, robots cannot navigate through unstructured dynamic environments at high speeds. They are also faced with safety concerns. These challenges need to be solved robots can be used as a solution to address the labor shortage menace. In the future, robots will evolve to execute more ordinary tasks that humans aren’t ready to handle.
Soon, robots will be able to learn, recognize, grip, and react fast, and this will boost automation in the industry.
Robot Perfect Tasks
Various tasks are ideal for robots. They include:
Palletizing is an ideal candidate for small industrial robots. Here, businesses leverage the robots to stack cases of products and goods in a pallet to restock stores. Busier industries have adopted advanced solutions that incorporate the use of two robots. These collaborate to complete the task in record time.
Still, the robots are used far apart from each other to avert collision and protect human workers. In this case, the robots may be faced with various challenges. For instance, if the packaging is damaged, slippery or missing, the robots are unable to cope.
Human workers would then have to interrupt the robot’s operation to fix the robot and facilitate the completion of the pallet. The eCommerce industry is experiencing tremendous growth. To enhance productivity and speed, robots should work in collaborating with humans and other robots to meet rising production demands.
Robots are also gaining popularity in the autonomous forklift industry. However, they operate slowly to reduce the risk of injury and collisions. If the robots are to provide a commercially practical solution, they’ll need to operate at optimal speed.
Small industrial robots are specially designed to execute tedious, repetitive, and labor-intensive tasks such as moving, hoisting and assembling parts. These tasks can increase the risk of health complications and injury to human workers. Robots, however, can execute them without growing weary.
Automating some of the complex tasks such as chassis welding can be difficult due to precision and dexterity difference in parts. Further, welding tasks can be overly bright for cameras and this complicates programming accuracy as well as the learning process.
To expand the capability of robots, they should be able to simulate the way humans operate on the assembly line.
The robotic industry still has a long way to go before small industrial robots can execute new and complex tasks. They will need to be more intelligent, dexterous, and understand their surroundings. When that is accomplished, automation will transform not only the manufacturing industry but other industries as well.