The Industrial Robotic Arm - A Manufacturing Boom

Posted on Nov 9, 2020

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Industrial Robotic Arm

Industrial robotic arms, or simply referred to as the industrial robots, are a type of mechanical arms that are usually programmable, and function and move like a human arm. An industrial robotic arm can either be a stand-alone mechanism or part of a more complex robot.

What Are Industrial Robotic Arms

According to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR), an industrial robotic arm is a robotic system designed for manufacturing, involving the ability to be programmable and automated to perform production related tasks with minimal human controller and oversight. Robotic arms typically consist of three or more axles, making them capable of moving.

 

Application of Industrial Robotic Arms

Industrial robotic arms are typically used for multiple industrial applications, such as welding, material handling, painting, assembling, thermal spraying, packaging, labeling, drilling, product inspection and testing. These may also entail servicing nuclear stations, repairing pipelines on the ocean floor, remote servicing of utility power lines, or removing radioactive and other hazardous waste.

A typical example of where industrial robotic arms are majorly used is in the auto-manufacturing industry. Robots have been widely utilized across auto-manufacturing industries, specifically in the auto assembly lines where cars are put together. Currently, automobile manufacturing aided by robots allow a car to be made more precisely as robotic arms are able to drill in the exact same space as programmed regardless of how long they have been working.

The auto-manufacturing industry is only one of the many industries that can be benefited by the implementation of industrial robotic arms. The high endurance, speed and precisions of industrial robots have definitely been a boom across the manufacturing industry.

  :: Read more : Why Should You Use a Robot Arm Coffee Maker?


Pros and Cons of Industrial Robotic Arms

Some of the advantages of industrial robotic arms include:


● Precision and Accuracy:

One of the core benefits of utilizing robotic arms in the production line is that they are extremely precise and accurate. Industrial robots function exactly how they were programmed to without any deviation, hence the accuracy and precision. This then leads to the superb quality of the final products and lower defective rate.


● Improved Production Capacity:

Industrial robots can improve a business’s production capacity. They are mechanical thus can work days and nights without taking breaks. They do not call in sick like human workers do. Also, industrial robots are fast and highly precise, and as a result, will produce more per hour than human labor.


● Fast and Efficient:

When it comes to robots, speed and efficiency immediately come to mind. Industrial robotic arms are highly efficient when carrying out the intended tasks. They are able to perform multiple tasks while remaining accurate and precise, thereby helping business expand and improve its financial status.


● Improve Working Conditions:

Many workplaces in a manufacturing setting are hazardous and dangerous. In this respect, using industrial robots will be the more suitable choice over human workers. The workers who carried out this work previously are now able to engage in other tasks in improved working conditions.


With the above said, some of the disadvantages of industrial robotic arms include:


● Monitoring is required:

Although robots do not require as much of an oversight and supervision as opposed to human workers, they still need to be monitored at all times to ensure that the production does not stagnate due to mechanical faults. This could lead to losses of the business due to delays of production.

With the advancements in technology, supervising robots has become very easy. It can even be done remotely. The robots are able to send feedback of their processes via text to the operator. In case of a technical fault, it can also be fixed remotely without having to stop the robot.


● Know-how limitations:

Robots are not human after all. They are not equipped with the necessary expertise to recognize abnormality during production process. This is why human workers are still required to monitor the robots in the event of unintended operation, and act upon the gathered information.

Additionally, industrial robot arms also require substantial amount of add-ons and external fixtures that most buyers do not know about, which is why some robot manufacturers train their buyers to manage and operate the robots (This does not come free of charge most of the time, however!).


● Fear of job loss:

This has always been a popularly posed concern with regard to utilizing automated robots in industrial setting. Industrial robots are deemed to be taking over jobs that are normally carried out by human workers. With their cost effectiveness and mechanical efficiency, they can replace human workers in the factory once they have stronger capabilities.

The thing is that experts have remarked that robots will not be equipped with the intelligence (commonly known as artificial intelligence) that will completely replace manual labor, at least not yet. As of now, human power is still required to watch over a production that involves robotic automation to cope with contingency.


The Final Words

Another common question posed by many is whether or not industrial robots should be trending universally. The answer is yes and no. While industrial robots are no doubt cost-saving for businesses by being able to work in a highly precise and fast manner, they lack the capacity to be creative or innovative, and this can only be carried out by an active human mind.

Robots can only complete tasks as they are instructed and programmed to as they do not have the capacity to tell when consumer preferences are changing and what they want. Therefore, the verdict is that the use of robots can undergo an even deeper popularization, but on the premise that human workers are not intended to be completely replaced. We still need man power to keep an eye on both the production line and the market, and adapt to any changes.

 

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