For the utility industry, these new robotics could offer significant benefits - and, in some cases, we're already beginning to see how the adoption of robots can make utility work safer and more productive.
Die casting, the process of forcing molten metal into molds, is far from new. Today, casting processes use a lot more advanced technology, specifically robots, than in years past. These 'bots have many advantages in die casting, but energy saving is one of the most substantial.
We already know that robotics can help protect our oceans in a number of ways, from improving wastewater treatment to improving fuel efficiency on ships. Thus, it makes sense that robotic assistance can have a positive impact on the sustainable energy sector.
The ST Robotics Workspace Sentry robot and area safety system are based on a small module that sends an infrared beam across the workspace. If the user puts his hand (or any other object) in the workspace, the robot stops using programmable emergency deceleration. Each module has three beams at different angles and the distance a beam reaches is adjustable. Two or more modules can be daisy chained to watch a wider area. "A robot that is tuned to stop on impact may not be safe. Robots where the trip torque can be set at low thresholds are too slow for any practical industrial application. The best system is where the work area has proximity detectors so the robot stops before impact and that is the approach ST Robotics has taken," states President and CEO of ST Robotics David Sands.