Automation is becoming commonplace in many different sectors today. Robots in the industrial sector go back to the mid-20th century when industrial engineers envisioned entirely automated industries. Industrial automation refers to the utilization of ‘’intelligent’’ robots or machines that enable manufacturing processes to be done with the least possible human help. These are the main tasks that require endurance, speed, and precision. Here are six industries that have excellently gained from automation:
Moto Vehicle Industry
Actual automation in the motor vehicle industry is believed to have started in the 1980s. U.S motor vehicle manufacturers brought up the idea of “lights-out’’ manufacturing. This idea was meant to keep them steps ahead of their manufacturing rivals by fully automating the car manufacturing process. The concept intended that the lights could be switched off, and the robots would take over. This idea is yet to become fully adopted.
Robotic automation allows auto-manufacturing plants to handle labor shortages. In most plants, robots work side by side with humans and help the staff achieve more in a shorter time. Industrial robot manufacturers build these collaborative robots (cobots) with in-built safety measures that allow them to sense when a human gets too close. The sensors stop the cobot, thus preventing any injuries.
The demand for smart devices such as flat-screen TVs, smartphones, tablets, earphones, and others has grown in recent years. China has taken advantage of robotic automation in this manufacturing sector. The number of robots working in the electronics industry in China between 2013 and 2014 has tripled.
Robots are useful in the electronics industry due to the many delicate tasks robot are capable of performing and in a much shorter period. The assembly of electronics requires precision and speed. A robot can perform several tasks at once, saving time and reducing the costs of production.
The health industry has greatly benefited from robotic automation. In San Fransisco Bay in the U.S, a hospital is making use of robots called TUGs for supplies and medication transport. Robots are also in use in operating theaters, assisting surgeons in carrying out delicate operations.
A flesh-cutting robot performs excellently and has less surrounding skin damage, and much better precision than a human hand.
In 2017, for the first time, a robot-assisted in performance of an eye surgery that involved growth in the retina. Doctors who had previously carried out the procedure had no automation to rely on, which is risky in itself in terms of incision accuracy.
The manual welding process is still in use, but most major welding companies prefer using robots. Robotic welding delivers faster and higher quality results and reduces the amount of waste generated. The robots also give human workers time to carry out other tasks that cannot be carried out by robots.
Food Service Industry
Robots in the foodservice industry are fast catching on. Because of factors such as the hike in raw material cost and minimum wage changes, restaurants are increasingly going the robot way. Robots standardize tasks and carry them out more efficiently.
Chain restaurants have the task of ensuring every chain gives the exact service, whether in the U.S or Taiwan. Automation ensures the restaurants achieve proper duplication via in-built orders in their programming.
Law Enforcement Industry
Slightly over 200 robots were transferred in 2016 from the military to the law enforcement departments. The robots are mainly used for bomb diffusion and gathering information on potentially dangerous situations. They then relay the information to human law enforcement agencies who carry out more investigation on the case.
Some robots yet to be released will carry out neighborhood watches and record any incidents related to public disorderliness or noise pollutions.
Robots in the next few years will be a significant part of daily living. Most people are skeptical, even fearful of robots. However, with time, and as robots are integrated into every sector, the negative mindset will slowly go away. We are progressing into a fully automated century, where robots will do the bulk of our work.