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ABB’s two-armed collaborative robot at Huawei Connect

Industrial internet: ABB signs deal with Huawei to develop robotics and automation solutions

ABB and Huawei say their agreement will help drive industries towards a ‘fully connected era’

Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei has signed a memorandum of understanding with ABB to robotics and automation technologies, including solutions for the power generation sector.

Under the deal, agreed at the Huawei Connect event earlier this month, the two parties will integrate Huawei LTE-based OneAir products and technologies into ABB robots and industrial automation solutions.

The cooperative mission involves the realization of remote wireless robotic monitoring, management, configuration, big data applications, and visualized intelligent manufacturing to jointly promote full industrial connectivity. 

abb huawei
ABB and Huawei executives at the signing ceremony earlier this month

ABB Robotics is one of the world’s leading suppliers of industrial robots, and also provides robot software, peripheral equipment, modular manufacturing cells and services for tasks such as welding, handling, assembly, painting and finishing, picking, packing, palletizing and machine tending.

Key markets for ABB include automotive, plastics, metal fabrication, foundry, electronics, machine tools, pharmaceuticals, food and beverage industries.

ABB says it has installed more than 300,000 robots worldwide. With industrial upgrade and technological development, wireless technologies have become very popular in the industrial sector. Robotic control now requires reliable wireless technologies to support efficient service operation.

LTE (4G) is an advanced and relatively mature mobile communication technology that is widely used throughout the world. It has gained significant momentum in the telecom operator market.

Compared with other wireless technologies, LTE has competitive advantages when applied on industrial wireless private networks, promoting Huawei OneAir as an optimal solution to be applied in many industries:

  • Huawei OneAir Smart X, a wireless industrial private network, provides full service industry-grade reliable mobile connections to support voice, video, data, and IoT over one single network.
  • Huawei OneAir supports both licensed and unlicensed frequencies to realize full spectrum combination. A series of powerful anti-interference wireless technologies are adopted to ensure low latency and service continuity.
  • Huawei OneAir is developed based on an LTE open architecture and provides a customized SDK development platform for connection to various industrial applications and realization of fully connected narrowband industrial IoT.
  • Huawei OneAir provides wireless modules with standard interfaces that can be flexibly integrated by different industrial terminals and robots. OneAir-equipped robots have reliable mobile processing capabilities.

Edward Deng, president of Huawei Wireless Network Solution, says: “Reliable industrial wireless networks are an important component during the automatic, digital, and intelligent transformation of industries.

“We are positive about the prospect of incorporating LTE wireless communication technology into the industrial sector.

“Huawei, with its profound wireless R&D and innovation competencies, will join hands with industrial leader ABB to develop E2E wireless products and solutions tailored to industrial characteristics and requirements.

“In the future, Huawei and ABB will fully leverage their respective strengths and extend cooperation and influence to multiple vertical industries.”

Li Gang, vice president of ABB China, says: “It gives us great pleasure to sign a MOU on cooperation with Huawei to enhance our strong bond and partnership.

“Huawei is a global leader in communications, especially wireless communications. We are convinced that our cooperation and mutual strengths will help reinforce ABB’s technological advantages in industrial robotics and automatic production to improve production efficiency and promote internal industrial manufacturing upgrades in enterprises.”