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08. May 2017
Blog>Meeting the Cobots

Meeting the Cobots

Hands-on awareness campaign on human-robot-collaboration successful at Hanover Trade Fair

Hanover Trade Fair 2017 saw UR’s new booth concept resonate with attendees as Universal Robots (Germany) GmbH presented turnkey solutions in collaboration with its sales and integration partners FAUDE, IIS Automation, Müller Maschinentechnik and Lorenscheit. On-site applications provided insights into the wide potential offered by our collaborative robot arms UR3, UR5 and UR10 – all featuring accessories from the Universal Robots+ developer ecosystem.

The UR booth in Hanover was not the only opportunity to interact with the cobots; no less than 16 other booths featured UR robots. We’ve captured them all (plus our own booth applications) in this reel featuring UR robots covered in tactile skin, equipped with new machine vision and force/torque sensors, picking bins, folding boxes, riding on mobile robots – even playing Yahtzee with attendees!

The numerous UR robot exhibits reflected the importance of our growing network of technology partners, many of whom also exhibited their own UR+ products optimized to work flawlessly with our robots.

 “The sheer mass of applications revolving around our robots at Hanover clearly shows that Universal Robots counts as first choice when it comes to collaborative robot applications. There are many people out there, developing new equipment to optimize existing applications or even pave the way for entirely new scenarios,” says Jürgen von Hollen, President of Universal Robots, emphasizing the importance for UR to reach out to developers at trade fairs and beyond to recruit them into the Universal Robots+ ecosystem:

“We’re hoping to grow the platform to feature around 100 UR+ solutions by the end of 2017. In doing this, we create a universal toolbox, from which our customers can customize exactly the robot application they need.”

The great reception by the audience in Hanover proved that UR’s new trade fair approach is right on target: to further lowering automation hurdles with a customer-oriented information campaign. Though cobot technology is becoming increasingly sophisticated and wide-spread, experience tells us that many manufacturing companies, particularly in the mid-cap segment, are only just beginning to realize how they might benefit from this technology.

From robot to Cobot - Interview with NDR at Hannover messe 2017.jpgFrom robot to cobot – in his interview with NDR (one of Germany’s leading public radio and television broadcasters), Helmut Schmid explains the latest developments and breakthroughs of cobot technology. The report shows how human-robot-collaboration is redesigning the world of work for the benefit of all.

“With the sale of its first robot, Universal Robots brought the cobot to market maturity back in 2008. Today, more than 12,000 of our robots are used worldwide, delivering the proof of concept for cobots,” explains Helmut Schmid, Managing Director and General Manager Western Europe at Universal Robots. “Stakeholders at trade fairs now come to us with a very specific and sophisticated need for information. That’s why we have dedicated ourselves to providing wide-ranged information and hands-on insights on all the aspects of human-robot-collaboration technology in order to promote its resounding breakthrough in the coming years.”

Cobots, please take over.jpg
Cobot, please take over – the application by Universal Robots partner IIS Automation showed two UR3s working in their predestined role: freeing human workers from monotonous tasks such as assembling switch plates all day long. The adaptive grippers, soon to be included on the UR+ platform, are especially developed by IIS.

With Hanover Trade Fair just having ended on April 24, the UR booth already hit the road again for its next destination: Including the packaging application by Lorenscheit, the Western Europe team is now at Interpack (May 4 – 10) in Düsseldorf, the leading trade fair for packaging in Germany. “With collaborative robots already being very present in the automotive sectors, we expect packaging and logistics to see the next big breakthrough in regard to this technology. Trends such as the steady rise of e-commerce, individualization of products and same-day-delivery challenge these sectors in a way never seen before. This is why we will surely see more collaborative robot applications – especially mobile applications – for packaging and logistics tasks in the near future,” says Helmut Schmid. 

Pick and place with cobots.jpgPick & Place – Lorenscheit’s trade fair application demonstrates how packaging processes can be automated efficiently with “just the one cobot.” The UR robot picks up a box from the dispenser and folds it up by placing it on the conveyor. Via camera sensor it is then able to detect the workpieces on the working surface, picks them up and sorts them into the box.

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Universal Robots

We believe that collaborative robotic technology can be used to benefit all aspects of task-based businesses – no matter what their size.

We believe that the latest collaborative robot technology should be available to all businesses. The nominal investment cost is quickly recovered as our robotic arms have an average payback period of just six months.

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