Kuka, one of the world’s biggest industrial robotics companies, is to develop a smart manufacturing platform in collaboration with Chinese communications giant Huawei.
Kuka and Huawei signed a deal to develop what could be a global network – built on the industrial internet of things – to enable the connection of robots across many factories. The companies say they plan to integrate artificial intelligence and deep learning into the system.
In the new manufacturing era, robots will play an increasingly important role in helping manufacturing businesses remain agile and drive growth, say the two companies.
Under the new agreement, Huawei and Kuka will collaborate in the areas of cloud computing, big data, mobile technology, and industrial robots to help manufacturing customers transform and embrace smart manufacturing.
Research and development will be central to the new partnership. Key areas of R&D include the use of small cell Internet of Things (IoT), wireless and 5G network, as well as big data solutions in manufacturing and factory environments and the deployment of Huawei’s infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) solutions to develop cloud-hosted smart manufacturing services.
In addition, Kuka and Huawei will set up a joint intuitive robot programming team to explore the use of imitative deep learning in advanced manufacturing environments.
“The manufacturing industry is undergoing profound transformation, and robots will be critical to revolutionizing factories and driving new opportunities. Kuka plays a central role in promoting and developing smart manufacturing solutions in Germany and across the world,” says Ryan Ding, executive director and president of products and solutions, Huawei.
“We’re confident our strategic partnership with Kuka will enable Huawei to lead the way in helping global manufacturing enterprises transform their factories and gain significant competitive advantages from realizing smart manufacturing.”
Peter Mohnen, CFO at Kuka, says: “We welcome our partnership with Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology solutions provider.
“Digitalization and the implementation of Industrie 4.0 will bring fundamental changes to industrial production and necessitate new products, solutions and concepts. As a global innovation leader of Industrie 4.0, Kuka is pushing ahead with this development and many sectors of the Chinese economy offer great potential.
“The electronic industry is challenged with an increasing number of new products, an accelerating pace of development and shorter product life cycles. Here we see a high potential for robot-based solutions.”
Stefan Lampa, CEO of Kuka Roboter, says: “As an important driver of innovation and growth, the electronics sector relies on modern robot-based automation solutions. Our new partnership with Huawei as an established leader in global technology and IoT solutions will open up new opportunities to drive innovations for the smart manufacturing sector.”
The new partnership demonstrates both Huawei and Kuka’s commitment to national programs in Germany and China to promote and develop intelligent manufacturing through the application of innovative IoT-enabled industrial solutions.