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INDUSTRY NEWS


Innovative robot design set to revolutionise the market


A new breed of industrial robot is lightweight, easy to program, simple to integrate and a fraction of the cost of traditional robotic systems


UR10 robotic arms, which can handle payloads of up to 5kg and 10kg respectively. These flexible, lightweight and user friendly 6-axis robots have been developed specially for small and medium enterprises, where the key requirement is for flexible and effective automation with a fast return on investment. The robots use patented technology


D


to measure electrical current in their joints


movement,


to determine force and rather


than expensive


sensor technology. This means the 5kg robot, for example, can undercut the price of robot solutions from the better known manufacturers by more than 50%. Another interesting design feature means that the robots are completely safe to work alongside, without the need for expensive guarding systems. An average payback period of as


little as six months makes these new robots uniquely affordable. They are also light enough to be moved around a plant as required, and do not require sturdy bases. The robots are delivered with everything that is required for programming, including the controller


box, touchscreen and software. The unique graphic user interface on the touchscreen makes programming particularly easy, so that anyone can set-up and change the robot’s program with the requirements to bring in robotic experts. To top it all, the robots are delivered with an electrical interface that is compliant with most of the industrial sensors and programmable logic controls (PLC). The idea for the robot was born in


2005, when developer Esben Østergaard spotted a gap in the automation market – for a robot that


could be used by anyone and that would be suitable for all levels of automation tasks. Three years later, he brought the UR5 to market, followed by the higher capacity UR10. 2011 was a breakthrough year for


Universal Robots, with the company selling


400 robots globally,


representing growth of 250%. Most of this growth came from Germany, Denmark and fast growing global markets, but now Universal Robots is targeting the UK, and is looking to recruit specialist distributors. www.universal-robots.com


Industrial cloud services available on all embedded platforms


A 10


dvantech UK is introducing SUSIAccess V2.0, a remote device management app- lication enabling System


Integrators to centralise monitoring and management of remote embedded devices in real-time. The application is also designed to be cloud-based and provides on-demand software services for system integrators to download and upgrade applications as required saving time and cost. All Advantech Embedded Computing products will come pre- loaded with SUSIAccess. By providing a ready-to-use remote


access solution, system integrators can focus more on their own applications


and let SUSIAccess configure the system, monitor their devices’ health, and recover any systems that may fail. According to an IDC survey, there


will be 25 billion smart devices and intelligent systems in operation around the world by 2020, creating a next generation prototype for the intelligent city. An important feature of all cloud- based systems is intelligent manage- ment functions for equipment and devices. Whether it is installation, maintenance, or updates, the process must be quick and simple. With cloud systems, users can install and download applications, utilities and data via a few simple clicks and they


can easily configure their equipment to remotely update itself and provide automatic notifications. SUSIAccess enables embedded developers to differentiate and add more value to their products. SUSIAccess centralises monitoring of


all remote embedded devices; it collects all device data, and provides logs for remote management. When errors occur,


administrator via warning popups and email alerts. And if there’s a major system crash, it automatically reboots so it can run diagnostics and deploy system recovery procedures. www.advantech.com


anish innovator Universal Robots claims


it has


revolutionised the robot market with its UR5 and


NEWS IN BRIEF


Festo’s online forum for automation problems


Festo has launched the Festo Support Community, a new online technical forum which gives customers quick and easy access to its experts, as well as enabling them to interact with each other, to find the best solutions to their automation and machine building problems. After a simple registration process,


customers can post technical questions online and respond to other users’ queries to share best practice (existing topics, posts and replies can be viewed without registering). The forum enables visitors to have conversations with Festo’s technical specialists and each other. Members can explain issues, ask questions and get a quick response. www.festo.co.uk/supportcommunity


UK manufacturer invests in


aerospace expansion Reliance Precision has announced a multi- million pound manufacturing investment. “In spite of the difficult economic trading environment world-wide,” observes managing director, Roger Kenworthy, “we have seen consistent growth in our business and expansion of our customer base. With a strong order book and significant recent contract awards we have set out a major investment plan to expand and develop our core precision manufacturing and assembly capabilities.” A new sub-micron machining centre


and new ultra high precision turning centre will give Reliance a step-change in technical ability, keeping the company at the forefront of precision component manufacturing. A new gear cell is to be introduced for optimal manufacture of high accuracy aerospace gears, whilst the existing gear cutting facility will be enhanced with new CNC machinery. www.reliance.co.uk


Free advice on machine it auto-notifies the system


safety is just a click away Without wanting to get into the politics behind it, Leuze Electronic is pointing out that the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) move towards charging for their work came significantly closer when they announced the planned introduction of a ‘fee for intervention’ cost recovery scheme from 1st October 2012, subject to Parliamentary approval of the proposed Health and Safety (Fees) Regulations 2012. In an attempt to give manufacturing


some good news however, Leuze are keen to highlight all the information and training Leuze electronic offer for free to help manage machine safety. Find out more at: www.leuze.co.uk


INDUSTRIAL TECHNOLOGY • July 2012


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