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When you think of today's robots in manufacturing, you're probably picturing large robotic arms swinging around uncontrollably. If you get too close you're probably going for a ride along with some pretty serious injuries. According to James Hagerty of The Wall Street Journal, a new generation of robots are on the way. Today's robots are smarter, more mobile, and more adaptable to their work environment. This new generation is expected to bring major changes to domestic manufacturing as well as increase global competition.
New technology is reducing the cost of robots and making them more accessible. By reducing costs, smaller manufacturers can compete with larger ones and it may allow the U.S. and other countries to bring back manufacturing jobs that are now overseas. More agile robots can be set up and moved around to perform multiple job functions. Repurposing robots reduces the need for manufacturers to make heavy investments in reconfiguring their factories.
Finally, robots are now designed to work in close proximity with people. Gone will be the days of dodging flying steel arms with tremendous force. Robots can sense where people are with cameras, sonar and other technologies to slow down or stop to avoid injuring them.
Will robots be everywhere in the near future? Most likely. With anything new and exciting there will always be speed bumps along the way. One thing we do know for sure is Interface is ready and able to support the growth of the new generation of robots. Our 3-Axis and 6-Axis Load Cells are uniquely suited for robotic applications. Our load cells are provided in various capacity ranges and sizes to work with your design needs. Interface is excited for the greater use of robots in the global manufacturing game.