Second to robot cost, the top concern for many manufacturers branching into robotics is ease of programming1. To address this and to unlock additional potential for a wider user group, robot suppliers like Yaskawa are constantly seeking to provide easy-to-use automation solutions that can tackle tough challenges.
Over a decade ago the dominant approach for catering to programming concerns was centered around the idea of a unified PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) programming environment, where experienced PLC programmers would not need knowledge of a separate robotic programming language to gain complete control over every component (i.e., robots, servos, variable frequency drives, etc.) in a given network. While PLC integration solutions, such as MLX300, have been highly advantageous and are still used extensively for tasks like picking, packing and palletizing, they are only one part of the programming puzzle.
Due to an evolving high-mix, low-volume market environment, the last few years have brought an uptick in product differentiation and stringent time-to-market demands for a growing number of manufacturers. This has prompted the creation of less expensive, faster and more versatile robots, as well as intuitive teach pendants and other intelligent tools, as reflected in Yaskawa’s Smart Series product line, that can facilitate quick and easy implementation of a robot system. Highly beneficial, this technology is helping to deliver transformative results to businesses around the world, yet there are still decision makers unsure of how to move forward.
Discover the Best Way to Program a Robot to Benefit Your Operation
To find greater clarity on questions like, “What type of robot do I need?”, and “What kind of robot programming may compliment the skills of my current workforce?”, listen to our recent webinar on How to Teach Robots by Yaskawa Innovation expert, Chetan Kapoor. Plus, gain more insight on:
1 Industrial robotics: Insight into the sector’s future growth dynamics, McKinsey & Company, 2019
(Robot Operating System) and how it can be modified to expand functionality
Vision Guided Robotics (VGR) and how 2D and 3D vision systems can aid robot programming
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how it is changing the way robots are deployed for unstructured tasks
Industry trends – see video examples of what other manufacturers are doing to bridge the gap between current staff and production needs
Sarah Mellish is a Marketing Content Specialist