Robotic Applications for Small-to-Medium Manufacturers: October 27, 2010
In the past, most industrial robots were designed for capital-intensive, large-volume manufacturing industries. These systems, which are costly, complex and inflexible, were unsuitable for smaller, discrete manufacturers, who require low cost systems that are quick to install, simple to operate and can be quickly reconfigured to support small production volumes. Suppliers of industrial robotics solutions have expanded their product offerings, as well as developed creative financing and leasing options, to support the needs of small-to-medium manufacturers (SMM), allowing them to adopt “Lean manufacturing” practices, which dramatically improve productivity, profitability and customer satisfaction.
Representative topics in the Robotic Solutions for Small-to-Medium Manufacturers track focus on the business issues and technical solutions supporting small-to-medium manufacturering using advanced robotics technologies, including:
- Save Your Factory – Lean Manufacturing
- Selling Robotics to Management
- Financing and Leasing Options
- Small Volume Manufacturing
- Application Specific Systems
- Flexible Automation
- Benchtop Systems
- Multi-Robot Systems
- Precision Assembly
- Human/Machine Interfaces
- Dexterous Grasping and Fine Manipulation
- Case Studies in Discrete Manufacturing
New Applications for Industrial Robotics
Over 1 million industrial robots are currently in service, with approximately 70% of these systems running applications for automakers and their suppliers. In the past, most industrial robots were designed for capital-intensive, large-volume manufacturing in the automotive, electronics and semiconductor industries. This percentage has been dropping dramatically as solution providers have added intelligence, vision, mobility and other capabilities to their systems, developed application specific products, and worked with integrators to develop new applications, often for industries that have never utilized robotics technology in the past.
The New Applications for Industrial Robotics track will highlight new, innovative and often surprising ways in which robots and robotic technology are being used to reduce costs and increase competitiveness.