A robot arm, also known as the robotic arm, is a type of mechanical arm that is usually programmable and designed to function like a human arm. The robot arm may be constructed to be stand-alone or part of a more complex robot. The joints of the arm are connected in a way that they are able to rotate freely.
Robotic arms are widely used in the manufacturing industry. The applications can range from welding, material handling, thermal spraying, painting, to drilling. The advance robotic technology provides immense dexterity in various environments. It is often expected to be used in high and narrow altitude environment such as servicing nuclear power stations, repairing and wielding pipelines on the ocean floor, servicing remotely utility power lines, or cleaning up hazardous wastes.
Robot arms are also largely used in the auto-manufacturing industry. They are often used in the assembly line for putting automobile parts together, and are a lot more efficient and precise as opposed to manual assembly.
Many of the benefits of robot arms entail reducing work injuries significantly such as repetitive stress injuries or other common factory-based work injuries. You may also be surprised that the application of robot arms is actually very consistent and is significantly less expensive than human labor.
Currently, the distinguishing benefit of utilizing robot arm is the precision that it is able to offer; robot arms are always able to drill precisely into the intended spots and bolts with the same amount of force no matter the duration of the production process. Last but not least, the implementation of robot arms can greatly save on the cost of labor. As the management, you will no longer have to worry about employees calling in sick, resigning, striking or other problems revolving around human. Robot arms are in fact able to work for a long period of time without human supervision. They benefit greatly many industries with automobile manufacturing being one of the most iconic applications.
There are essential six types of robot arms for industrial applications: Cartesian, SCARA, cylindrical, delta, polar and vertically articulated. Other types of robot arms with different joint configuration also exist, but we are only to address the common types of robotic arms in this article.
● Articulated Robotic Arms:
This type of robotic arm features rotary joints and is designed to have the number of joints ranging from at least two to more than ten connected joints. The robotic arm is connected with a base holding on the arm with a twistable joint. The links in the robotic arm are connected by rotary joints. Every joint is commonly referred to as the axis which offers an extra degree of freedom. Industrial robotic arms typically have four to six axes.
● Cartesian Robotic Arms:
Cartesian robotic arms are also called the gantry or rectilinear robots because they utilize the Cartesian coordinate system (X, Y, and Z). Cartesian robotic arms have three linear joints and a twisted joint which allow the arm to be rotated. The joints create a linear motion along the axis.
● Cylindrical Robotic Arms:
The robotic arm is comprised of at least one prismatic joint which is connected to at least one twisted joint at the base. The rotary joint utilizes a rotational movement along the axis of the joint while the prismatic joint use a linear motion. Cylindrical robotic arms are operated within a cylindrical shaped container.
● Polar Robotic Arms:
A polar robotic arm is also known as the spherical robots. This type of robotic arm is comprised of a base with twisted joint connecting two rotary joints and one linear join. A polar coordinate system s created by the axes and creates a spherical shaped container.
● SCARA Robotic Arms:
SCARA Robotic arms are commonly used in assembly operation. Arms for assembly operations are typically in cylindrical design to ensure optimal compliance. The construction consists of two parallel joints which provide compliance in one selected plane.
● Delta Robotic Arms:
The delta robotic arm is actually quite unique in its design. It is built from jointed parallelograms connected to a base. The parallelograms allow movement in a dome shaped area. These robotic arms primarily used electronic, food, and pharmaceutical industries which require robots with precise and sophisticated movement.
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