Volkswagen and Kuka research ways to use robots for future electric and autonomous cars

Volkswagen’s new concept autonomous and electric car, Sedric
Volkswagen self-driving concept car, which it calls Sedric

The Volkswagen Group is researching ways in which robots can be used in the future when cars become more electrified and computerised as a result of increasing demand for clean and autonomous vehicles. 

The German automaker, which owns the Audi, Bentley, Seat, Porsche and Lamborghini brands among others, is working one of the world’s largest industrial robotics and automation providers, Kuka, to research and develop a number of ideas.

The current area of interest for the strategic partnership between Kuka and Volkswagen is the area of service concepts for vehicles of the future, and the two companies have agreed a contract to jointly develop robot-based innovation concepts for vehicles of the future.  Continue reading Volkswagen and Kuka research ways to use robots for future electric and autonomous cars

Toyota demonstrates ‘human service robot’ of a type that may take over a lot of homes

Toyota has been demonstrating what it calls its “Human Support Robot”, a type of robot which looks likely to take over millions of homes all over the world in the next few years.

The market for this type of so-called personal assistance robot is forecast to grow very quickly over the next few years because of advances in the technology.

According to analysts at ResearchAndMarkets.com, the personal robotics market will grow by almost 40 per cent within the next five years to a total size of $34 billion.  Continue reading Toyota demonstrates ‘human service robot’ of a type that may take over a lot of homes

Kuka to build personal assistance robot business with Midea

Midea-products
Some of the products Midea manufactures

Kuka, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of industrial robotic arms, is planning to expand into the area of personal assistance robotics. 

This is according to an article on FT.com, which quotes Kuka chief executive Till Reuter.

Reuter told the FT that he sees potential for using Midea’s reach into the household appliances market to develop more complex, intelligent machines which can help with household tasks.  Continue reading Kuka to build personal assistance robot business with Midea

Yaskawa invests €4 million in production facility in Sweden, and partners with Midea in Asia

yaskawa_new-swedish-facility
Yaskawa facility in Torsås, Sweden. Picture credit: Yaskawa via Evertiq

Yaskawa is expanding its manufacturing operation in Sweden, according to a report on Evertiq.com.

One of the world’s largest industrial robot manufacturers, Yaskawa is investing a further €4 million into the plant at Torsås, Sweden.

The work will eventually expand the facility by 2,000 sq m and is expected to be completed by summer 2018.  Continue reading Yaskawa invests €4 million in production facility in Sweden, and partners with Midea in Asia

Collaborative robotic system makes ‘monotonous and physically demanding tasks’ at BMW easier

bmw dingolfing kuka robot
A worker at BMW Dingolfing, with the Kuka collaborative robot

The employees at BMW Group’s Dingolfing Plant have a new, highly responsive assistant: an LBR iiwa lightweight robot from Kuka, which they say takes over “monotonous and physically demanding tasks”. 

Previously, BMW employees had to lift a differential case which weighed up to 5.5 kg, and had to manoeuvre it with millimeter-precision, in the assembly of the front axle.

Now the robot is taking over this “ergonomically demanding work”.  Continue reading Collaborative robotic system makes ‘monotonous and physically demanding tasks’ at BMW easier

RoboMotion and SoTec demonstrate cloud robotics solution using Kuka Agilus

Industrial automation integrator RoboMotion and software company SoTec have demonstrated a robotics solution which enables users to control an industrial robot through their smartphones.

The two companies say they have developed an integrated solution which enables “robot control from the cloud”, and used the system to control an industrial robot made by Kuka.

The solution essentially eliminates the need to use a programmable logic controller, or PLC, which is basically a computer attached to robotics and automation hardware systems to program and control their movements.  Continue reading RoboMotion and SoTec demonstrate cloud robotics solution using Kuka Agilus

Daimler orders millions of dollars worth of industrial robotics tech from Kuka

KR FORTEC 360

The robotics division of Kuka has received what the company describes as “a major new order in the double-digit million euro range” from a German premium car manufacturer.

The framework agreement with the Daimler encompasses the supply of multiple industrial robots of the KR Quantec generation and the integrated KR C4 controller, as well as robots from the KR Fortec heavy-duty series.

The robots will be used primarily for joining and handling applications in body-in-white production.  Continue reading Daimler orders millions of dollars worth of industrial robotics tech from Kuka

Kuka shows off its robots working in microelectronics

Electronics is a fast-growing market for industrial robots, and Kuka has been showing off some of its success in the sector. 

In one example the company highlighted recently, a total of 25 Kuka robots are in operation at Possehl Electronics in Niefern, Germany.

There, they manufacture complex timing cases for electric power steering systems for cars.

At the core of the system, three KR Agilus robots precisely place components into the injection molding machine.

Industrial robots work on three lines with an accuracy to a tenth of a millimeter, says Kuka.  Continue reading Kuka shows off its robots working in microelectronics

Swisslog Americas forms automotive group

swisslog warehouse and distribution

Swisslog Warehouse and Distribution Solutions Americas has formed an automotive group and appointed Terry Krantz as vice president of sales and consulting.

Swisslog Warehouse and Distributions Solutions Americas, a Member of the Kuka Group and leading provider of best-in-class intralogistics solutions, announces the formation of a new automotive business unit focused on developing and delivering intralogistics automation to tier one suppliers and original equipment manufacturers.

Markus Schmidt, president of Swisslog WDS Americas, says: “Tier one suppliers and OEMs have already been turning to Swisslog and benefiting from our turnkey solutions designed to streamline their work-in-process manufacturing, kitting, and parts storage.  Continue reading Swisslog Americas forms automotive group

Kuka agrees deal with Beet on IoT

beet analytics video still

Kuka has agreed a deal with Beet Analytics as part of robot maker’s Industrie 4.0 strategy.

Kuka will now be able to offer Beet’s industrial IoT technology as another tool in their Industrie 4.0 eco-system and to offer Beet technology on Kuka solutions.

Ronny Chiang, president Beet analytics technology, says: “We are excited to work with Kuka, whose global industrial leadership in automation systems will further strengthen Beet’s presence in the global market. This will allow OEMs [original equipment manufacturers] to access Beet IoT solutions with a respected and established leader standing behind it.”  Continue reading Kuka agrees deal with Beet on IoT

SAP and Kuka partner to design the ‘factory of the future’

SAP and Kuka say they will work together around Industrial 4.0 and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) to develop more flexible and automated production processes.

Both companies want to collaborate, particularly in the areas of manufacturing, mechanical engineering and the automotive sector.

The integration of Kuka robots into SAP’s digital manufacturing is based on standard protocols such as OPC Unified Architecture.

In addition, Kuka and SAP plan to provide Kuka robot applications based on the SAP Leonardo IoT platformContinue reading SAP and Kuka partner to design the ‘factory of the future’

General Motors names Kuka Systems its supplier of the year

kuka robot at hannover messe

Kuka Systems recognized by General Motors as 2016 Supplier of the Year winner for powertrain and body shop equipment

Kuka Systems was named a “General Motors Supplier of the Year for Powertrain and Body Shop Equipment” by GM during its 25th annual Supplier of the Year awards ceremony held recently in Orlando, Florida.

GM recognized 118 of its best suppliers from 15 countries that have consistently exceeded GM’s expectations, created outstanding value or brought new innovations to the company.

The announcement represented the most suppliers GM has recognized since debuting the Supplier of the Year event in 1992. This is the second time Kuka Systems has received the award.  Continue reading General Motors names Kuka Systems its supplier of the year

Nebbiolo Technologies launches ‘fog computing’ for industrial automation

nebbiola

Nebbiolo Technologies has launched its first product line, embracing fog computing – often referred to as edge computing – as a keystone for the Industrial IoT and Industry 4.0.

In this context, fog computing will provide a powerful new functionality layer in the industrial automation pyramid, enabling the convergence between information technologies and operational technologies. Continue reading Nebbiolo Technologies launches ‘fog computing’ for industrial automation

Kuka and VIP launch new system to teach industrial robots without programming

All Kuka robots can now be “easily and intuitively” guided by hand in the workspace using a new navigation system developed by Very Important Product

The VIP Navigator was developed in partnership with Kuka.

VIP is a special-machine engineering expert and is now offering what the companies call the ready-to-use package, “ready2_pilot”, through its Navigator product.

The new system enables “quick and easy robot programming” using intuitive guidance – physically teaching the robot – instead of computer coding.  Continue reading Kuka and VIP launch new system to teach industrial robots without programming

MRK-Systeme builds Kuka-based automation solution for BMW

Human-robot collaboration-compliant Kuka robots put to work in quality assurance at BMW facility 

MRK-Systeme has developed an automation solution with human-robot collaboration capability for the BMW Group using Kuka robots for high payloads.

It enables the factory in Landshut, Bavaria to carry out quality assurance for crankshaft housing in an “ergonomically friendly manner”, says the company.  Continue reading MRK-Systeme builds Kuka-based automation solution for BMW