Many companies embrace advanced machines to accelerate the digital transformation of their operations. Their main concern is improving productivity and meeting consumers’ expectations. Automation, in turn, minimizes costs.
For many manufacturers, the first thing that comes to mind when considering the use of machines in the production line is the replacement of human workers. This is not necessarily true. You can often see workers doing tasks with the aid of tools such as robotic arms, cranes, or holders. In other factories, the work is completely done by robots. This is known as a fully-automated factory. Full automation doesn’t mean the replacement of human workers, but rather a change in their work assignments from hard labor to maintenance and guidance.
In the past, programmable logic controllers were the only controllers in factories. They governed ever part of the manufacturing process and pipelines. Highly-skilled programmers used ladder logic and to program these controllers. The complexity of the controllers and the programming languages made these solutions costly to implement, maintain, and replace.
Now, controlling robotic arms in assembly lines can be done via a user-friendly interface provided by the manufacturing companies. Engineers maintain these robots with one of many widespread programming languages.
The newest trend is programming robots to work in teams, or swarms. Swarm robots are programmed using distributed intelligence algorithms to work in parallel and to divide the workflow among the agents to produce faster results than a single robot could on its own.
They start by creating intelligent portions of a line, then transition to an entire line, then to a collection of lines, then to a whole factory, and finally to a collection of factories.
Manufacturers find robots perfect for handling dirty, dangerous, and demeaning jobs that can be unsafe or a burden on human workers. Robots are used in every industry today: transportation, the food industry, automation of factories, sports, and many more.
The list is endless. We must start learning to communicate with, program, and make use of robots to use them to their best potential. Start your learning journey with RoboGarden now. Register for free.
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