What if robots didn’t take the place of humans, but worked alongside them? That’s precisely the reality when cobots—collaborative robots—are added to the workforce. When you can design your workflow to capitalize on the best attributes of humans and robots, there are many benefits.
What is a cobot?
Cobots are the latest generation of robotic systems, and they are intended to work alongside humans. Thanks to enhancements in sensor and vision technology, cobots do not need to be secured behind a cage to keep humans in the workplace safe from the rapid movements and heavy bulk that are typical in earlier generations of industrial robots.
Advances in computing power and robotic technology along with a smaller price tag, an average of $24,000 each, make cobots a realistic option for small- and medium-sized businesses. Now the benefits of advanced robotics are available to these companies to help them compete with larger manufacturers.
- Easy to program: No programming expertise is needed to set up and operate cobots quickly. Often, they are virtually plug and play or easily programmed through a tablet or by adjusting the cobot’s arms.
- Fast to setup: Unlike traditional industrial robots that take weeks to be operational, the setup time for most cobots is just a few hours.
- Flexible: Traditional robots are often bolted to the floor and deployed for a particular application. Cobots are flexible and mobile, don’t require a lot of space and can be redeployed very easily to support new and multiple applications.
- Safe: Cobots don’t need safety cages to keep your human workforce safe on the job when they are working. They can sense obstacles and adjust their speed or reverse to avoid crashing into humans (or other obstacles).
How are cobots used in operations?
The more dirty, dull and dangerous tasks cobots can take over from humans, the more opportunity people will have to take on higher-level or creative functions. Here are a few ways cobots are used:
Hand guiding: Similar to a traditional industrial robot, a hand guiding cobot has an additional device at the end of its arm that is pressure sensitive. This allows the human operator to teach the cobot how to hold an object or how fast to move something so that nothing gets damaged.
Source : Forbes
Photo Credit : usinenouvelle.com