Facts on Robots

May 7, 2014

Industrial robots do a fantastic job of making the production line more efficient. There hundreds of robot options available depending on your specific application needs. All of the parts of a robot are important, including the manipulator, EOAT, and controller.


Robots have come a long way since Uni­mate, the first indus­tri­al robot invent­ed by George Charles Devol. Since then indus­tri­al robots have been defined by the Inter­na­tion­al Orga­ni­za­tion for Stan­dard­iza­tion (ISO) as auto­mat­i­cal­ly con­trolled, re-pro­gram­ma­ble, mul­ti­pur­pose manip­u­la­tors pro­gram­ma­ble in 3 or more axes.” This arti­cle will look at some of the key facts about robots that are help­ful for any cur­rent or future robot user to know.

Robot Types: There are 3 main types of robots:

Artic­u­lat­ed Robots- These types of robots have rotary joints

SCARA- These robots are also known as Selec­tive Com­pli­ant Assem­bly Robot Arm and con­tain par­al­lel axis-joints

Gantry Robots- These robots have 3 prin­ci­ple axes of con­trol and are linear

Robot Com­po­nents: There are 3 core com­po­nents that make up the anato­my of a robot, the manip­u­la­tor, EOAT, and controller.

Manip­u­la­tor- This is the long, joint­ed arm and wrist of the robot. It allows the robot to extend, turn, and reach to dif­fer­ent degrees. The move­ments of the arm are deter­mined by the axes of motion. Most indus­tri­al robots work with 3 – 6 axes.

End of Arm Tool­ing (EOAT) — This attach­ment to the robot wrist is what manip­u­lates the spe­cif­ic parts robot appli­ca­tions are designed for. It is a vital part of the robot and may include weld­ing torch­es, grip­pers, saws, and many more end devices.

Con­troller- The con­troller acts as the brains of the robot and pro­vides its appli­ca­tion sup­port. It runs the intri­cate com­pu­ta­tions need­ed by the robot in order to manip­u­late its EOAT for par­tic­u­lar appli­ca­tions. Hand held devices called teach pen­dants are used to pro­gram and store infor­ma­tion for the controls.

Appli­ca­tions: Indus­tri­al robots were first designed to be used for appli­ca­tions such as mate­r­i­al han­dling, spot weld­ing, and spray paint­ing. Due to the tech­no­log­i­cal advances of the 21st cen­tu­ry there are a vari­ety of appli­ca­tions robots may be used for today. Some of the most pop­u­lar ones include:

Weld­ing- This is the most pop­u­lar robot appli­ca­tion to date. The most com­mon types of weld­ing appli­ca­tions include arc weld­ing and spot welding.

Spray Paint­ing- Since robots are con­sis­tent with high repeata­bil­i­ty it makes them ide­al for paint appli­ca­tions. Robots cre­ate uni­form pat­terns while reduc­ing costs with less wast­ed materials.

Assem­bly- Robots are per­fect for assem­bling because they can eas­i­ly per­form monot­o­nous and repet­i­tive tasks with ease.

Pal­letiz­ing and Mate­r­i­al Han­dling- Many man­u­fac­tur­ers have turned to robots for these process­es because they are much clean­er than human work­ers. They do not bring in dust, dirt, or any oth­er for­eign sub­stance, which is ide­al for han­dling con­sumer prod­ucts that must be kept clean.

Con­sid­er­a­tions: It is impor­tant to under­stand the cri­te­ria you are look­ing for when select­ing a robot. Some impor­tant char­ac­ter­is­tics to take into con­sid­er­a­tion include: Cost, Robot Man­u­fac­tur­er, Robot Size, Appli­ca­tion type, Robot type, Work­ing envi­ron­ment, Robot Per­for­mance (accu­ra­cy, repeata­bil­i­ty, etc.).

Con­tact Robots​.com online or at 8777626881 for any addi­tion­al ques­tions, facts on robots, or quotes.

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