Robotics News Insights from Yaskawa Motoman

Overcoming Obstacles with 3D Vision Technologies

Posted by Keith Vozel on Feb 16, 2017 8:40:10 AM

Quickly grabbing and orienting a random part from a bin has never been an easy task for a robot. So it often falls to humans to find and process parts. Whether the piece is a plastic handle for a tote or a part for a car or computer, the process is similar. While machine designers have tried to automate a lot of this work, fickle lighting conditions in factories and parts of varying shapes can pose a problem just thorny enough to stump most robots.

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Topics: Handling, Pick and Place, Machine Vision, Bin Picking


Keep on Truckin’ Lightly with Aluminum Welding

Posted by Chris Anderson on Jan 25, 2017 3:13:24 PM

Manufacturers of over-the-road vehicles (also referred to as OTR or long-haul trucks), and to a lesser degree car manufacturers, are improving fuel economy and reducing the weight of their vehicles with aluminum. Assembling frames, trailers and other components made of aluminum requires welding, and there are important differences between robotically welding steel components versus those made of aluminum.

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Topics: Arc Welding, Manufacturing, Tips and Tools, automotive


Collaborative Robot Risks & Rewards

Posted by Keith Vozel on Dec 14, 2016 10:01:01 AM

When you’re staring down a dirty, tedious (or even dangerous) job, you know how good it feels to get it completed. The first time you do it – even the first few times – there’s a sense of accomplishment. Over time, these jobs can not only wear down workers but also keep them from higher value tasks in a plant.

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Topics: New Technologies, Collaborative Robots, Manufacturing, ROI


Retrain or Recruit? Tackling the Skills Gap in Your Organization

Posted by Buddy Smith on Dec 5, 2016 1:14:47 PM

My master’s thesis dealt with job satisfaction in the workplace. At the time I wrote my thesis, I was working for a global manufacturer of aircraft parts. In the mid-1990s, I watched my employer go through massive layoffs, reducing its workforce by more than 60 percent in three years. Watching the turmoil made me aware of how important it is to consider people when dealing with shifting economics, production needs and skill gaps.

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Topics: Education and Training, Manufacturing, Production, ROI


Addressing the Skilled Welder Shortage at FABTECH

Posted by Jennifer Katchmar on Nov 8, 2016 1:55:37 PM

 Many manufacturers nationwide are having a difficult time finding quality welders. Based on U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, the American Welding Society (AWS) estimates a welder shortage of 372,000 in the U.S. by 2026. In order to stay in business and be competitive, forward-thinking companies are now looking into automating their processes.

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Topics: Arc Welding, Trade Shows, Programming, Spot Welding


Get Simplified at Pack Expo

Posted by Jennifer Katchmar on Oct 26, 2016 1:38:33 PM

Yaskawa America, Inc. will soon be headed to Chicago, IL for Pack Expo International. In 2016, Pack Expo is the world’s largest processing and packaging industry show with more than 2,000 exhibiting companies and over 45,000 attendees. It will again be co-located with Pharma-Expo, which is the leading and dominant pharmaceutical event for comprehensive innovations.

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Topics: Palletizing, Trade Shows, Consumer Products, Packaging, Pick and Place, Picking/Packing


Looking for a Way to “Future-Proof” Production?

Posted by Ken Hyun on Oct 10, 2016 11:22:17 AM

At this year’s IMTS in Chicago, I had a number of discussions with manufacturers that were looking for ways to improve their manufacturing process.

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Topics: Manufacturing, Production, ROI


Smart Lifecycle Management Isn’t One-Size-Fits-All

Posted by Doug Burnside on Sep 19, 2016 3:25:26 PM

Like the veracity of the 3,000-mile oil change, some people view maintenance schedules with skepticism. Today’s synthetic oils can keep car engines running perfectly well and safely for up to and beyond 5,000 miles between oil changes, but the old 3,000-mile standard still lingers.

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Topics: Maintenance, Tips and Tools


Cobots, Mobile Robotics and Machine Vision at IMTS

Posted by Jennifer Katchmar on Aug 30, 2016 11:37:59 AM


Preview new products for human-robot collaboration, mobile handling/logistics, 3D vision, assembly and welding

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Embarking on the Future of Manufacturing

In less than two weeks, Yaskawa Motoman heads to McCormick Place in Chicago, IL for the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS). IMTS is one of the largest industrial trade shows in the world, featuring more than 2,000 exhibiting companies and over 114,000 registrants. The event is held every two years in September.

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Topics: New Technologies, Collaborative Robots, Trade Shows, Mobile Robotics, Machine Vision


Dismantling the Drudgery of Pallet Recycling

Posted by Roger Christian on Aug 16, 2016 1:24:33 PM

It’s been said taking something apart is easier than putting it together. If you’re in business to dismantle and recycle pallets, you might say otherwise. Taking apart (or dismantling) wooden pallets is dangerous, deafening and draining for employees. The work in pallet recycling plants is largely manual labor

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Topics: New Technologies, Manufacturing


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