Yaskawa Motoman Robot History

Nov 29, 2017

Motoman robots began in 1976 in Europe and has continued to expand and provide automation solutions across the globe. Motoman robotics is known for their incredible customer service and countless innovations. Robots.com looking forward to helping you with the integration process.

Yaskawa Motoman Robots

Yaskawa Motoman Robot­ics has sev­er­al loca­tions world­wide, includ­ing loca­tions in the USA, Mex­i­co, and Cana­da. It also has dis­trib­u­tors in oth­er coun­tries such as Turkey, Rus­sia, and Poland. The Motoman USA head­quar­ters is cur­rent­ly locat­ed in West Car­roll­ton, Ohio. The par­ent com­pa­ny of Motoman, Yaskawa Elec­tric Group, also offers super-mecha­tron­ic prod­ucts that have earned exten­sive acclaim in the semi­con­duc­tor industry.

Motoman began in 1976 in Europe as a man­u­fac­tur­er and sup­pli­er of weld­ing machin­ery for the auto­mo­tive indus­try. After 20 years of hard work and ded­i­ca­tion, they were estab­lished as a major brand on the Euro­pean mar­ket and their great suc­cess led to becom­ing part of Yaskawa Elec­tric Corporation. 

Motoman is proud to be known for their amaz­ing cus­tomer ser­vice and count­less inno­va­tions. These are seen with the world’s first robot con­troller (MRC) that could con­trol two robots, the NX100 con­troller that could oper­ate up to four robots, the 7‑axis sin­gle-arm, IA20, and the 13-axis dual-arm DA20 robots, both that had a rev­o­lu­tion­ary arm con­cept result­ing in extra­or­di­nary free­dom of move­ment. Con­tin­ue to read below for more pre­cise details of the excep­tion­al job Motoman has done in con­quer­ing the indus­tri­al robot market.

Motoman Robot Timeline

1977 Yasnac RB and Motoman L10: The Motoman L10 was intro­duced in 1977. It fea­tured five axes, a max­i­mum work­load of 10 kg, and weighed 470kg. The Motoman L10 was the first robot that Yaskawa intro­duced on the market. 

1980 Yasnac Con­trol Sys­tem RG: The Motoman RC Con­trol sys­tem was intro­duced in 1980 and gave the abil­i­ty to con­trol up to six axes. The pro­gram­ming capac­i­ty was increased to 1000 posi­tions (600 instruc­tions) and the max­i­mum num­ber of jobs stored in the mag­net­ic mem­o­ry was still 99 (exter­nal mem­o­ry was on tapes). 

1982 Motoman L10W: The Motoman L10W was intro­duced in 1982 with a work area that was increased by 80%. It also fea­tured a robot wrist that was more nar­row and capa­ble of a max­i­mum work­load of 10kg. The 280kg robot was made of a light alu­minum alloy which helped reduce the size of its motors.

1983 Motoman L10WA: The world’s first six-axis robot that fea­tured an extra wrist axis, called A. The RG con­trol sys­tem could han­dle this robot mod­el and the ordi­nary L10W with an exter­nal axis. How­ev­er, the L10W mod­els were almost exclu­sive­ly used with the next-gen­er­a­tion con­troller RX.

1983 Yasnac Con­trol Sys­tem RX: The RX con­troller intro­duced the abil­i­ty to con­trol up to eight axes, the robot­’s six, plus two external. 

1985 Motoman L‑Series: The release of a whole series of robots meant that sev­er­al mod­els could be oper­at­ed with the same type of con­trol sys­tem. The L‑series includ­ed robots able to han­dle a work­load of up to 120kg. There was direct dri­ve on the three wrist axes, RBT. The series includ­ed the fol­low­ing mod­els: L106, L15, L30, L60, and L120.

1988 Motoman ERC Con­trol Sys­tem: The ERC con­trol sys­tem was able to con­trol 12 axes, more than any oth­er con­troller at the time. It had a lot of improved fea­tures like elec­tron­ic seam track­ing (Comarc II) and Mul­ti-Lay­er func­tions which meant that exter­nal sen­sors and seam track­ing devices were no longer necessary. 

1988 Motoman K Series: The K series was intro­duced with the Motoman K10S, a six-axis, 10kg pay­load robot. The K series of robots had a direct dri­ve on all six axes. This meant that the pow­er was trans­ferred to the axes direct­ly and not through a long chain of trans­mis­sions or link arms. The oth­er mod­els in this series includ­ed: K3S, K6SB, K30WSB, and the K100S.

1989 Motoman Inc.: Motoman Inc. is offi­cial­ly formed as a joint ven­ture between Hobart Broth­ers and Yaskawa Electric. 

1989 Arc­World: Motoman cre­ates the Arc­World series, the indus­try’s first stan­dard, pre-engi­neered arc weld­ing solutions.

1994: The Motoman MRC con­trol sys­tem offered the abil­i­ty to con­trol up to 21 axes. It could also syn­chro­nize the motions of two robots. The MRC con­troller intro­duced new func­tions well suit­ed for mate­r­i­al han­dling and nec­es­sary when syn­chro­niz­ing two robots.

1994 Motoman SK Series: The Motoman SK series intro­duced a line of robots that focused on improved per­for­mance. The max­i­mum work­load was increased by 300% and dual robot con­trol became a real­i­ty. The use of the rev­o­lu­tion­ary Sig­ma series AC ser­vo motors deliv­ered increased pro­duc­tiv­i­ty. These motors were 13 of the weight and size of pre­vi­ous motors with equiv­a­lent out­put rat­ings. The small foot­print and arm diam­e­ter of the SK-series robots reduced inter­fer­ence zones and increased the work­ing range. The low­er mass and high­er motor out­put allowed for greater axis speeds. The SK-series of robots includ­ed: SK16, SK6 C, SK166, SK45, SK45-30, SK120, and the SK300.

1995 Troy, Ohio: Motoman opens a new pro­duc­tion facil­i­ty to build 120kg and 150kg robot arms that are ANSI/RIA compliant.

1998 Motoman XRC Con­trol Sys­tem: The intro­duc­tion of the XRC con­troller allowed the con­trol of up to 27 axes and the syn­chro­nized con­trol of three to four robots. The XRC con­trol sys­tem has a RISC proces­sor and a Win­dows-ori­ent­ed inter­face with direc­to­ries and fold­ers. Sev­er­al types of PC soft­ware for job edit­ing, file trans­fer, and offline pro­gram­ming and sim­u­la­tion are avail­able. Some inter­est­ing new fea­tures intro­duced with XRC include Form Cut­ting (used in laser, plas­ma, or water cut­ting), shock sen­sor func­tions, and the abil­i­ty to have acceleration/​retardation at any point. 

1998 Motoman UP-Series: The UP series intro­duced a sim­pler robot arm that is more read­i­ly acces­si­ble for main­te­nance and repair. The par­al­lel link arrange­ment, or yoke, was elim­i­nat­ed. The bear­ings that flanked the sides of the SK series, pro­vid­ing stiff­ness and rigid­i­ty, gave way to vibra­tion sup­pres­sion in the ser­vo con­trol loop on the UP series. Oth­er advan­tages to this arm are far bet­ter lin­ear con­trol and cir­cu­lar pre­ci­sion. The first two robots in this series were the UP6 and the UP130. They offer the abil­i­ty to reach behind them­selves to facil­i­tate such things as tool-chang­ing. Hon­da was instru­men­tal in dri­ving the devel­op­ment of both the UP series of arms and the XRCarm con­trol. The oth­er robots in this series include: UP6‑C, UP20, UP206, UP20M, UP50, UP130, UP16, UP165-100, UP200, and UP350.

1999 Motoman World Solu­tions: Motoman cel­e­brat­ed 10 Years, 10,000 Robots!” by expand­ing the pre-engi­neered World solu­tions with the Press­World and the DieCastWorld.

2001 Motoman EA and ES Series: Inte­gral process cables made the EA (Expert Arc) and ES (Expert Spot) robots in demand for those applications.

2002 Quad Robot Con­trol: The abil­i­ty to pro­gram four robots from a sin­gle con­troller was cre­at­ed and named quad robot con­trol. Motoman also released the DX1350, a small arm specif­i­cal­ly designed for debur­ring applications.

2004 Motoman NX100 Con­trol Sys­tem: The NX100 intro­duced the abil­i­ty to con­trol up to 36 axes a col­or touch screen teach pen­dant with the Win­dows CE oper­at­ing. The robot arm series became specif­i­cal­ly designed for spe­cial­ized appli­ca­tions. Some of the sup­ply cables were moved in order to increase the effi­cien­cy of the robots dur­ing the appli­ca­tion. The EA Series was released as the Expert Arc Weld­ing Series.

2006 Motoman Intro­duces a New Arm Design: A new robot style was released with the intro­duc­tion of the human-sized IA20 (sin­gle) and DA20 (dual) robot arms. Both of these arms hide all of the sup­ply cables inside their body. These arms offered human-like flex­i­bil­i­ty in their move­ments and were ide­al for machine tend­ing, assem­bly, and even bev­er­age serv­ing! The Robo­Bar, an auto­mat­ed drink sta­tion, grabs nation­al attention.

2007 New Motoman Robots Arms: This year saw the intro­duc­tion of the world’s fastest weld­ing robot, the Super Speed Arc SSA2000, and the Super Speed Flex­i­ble SSF2000 han­dling and gen­er­al process robot.

2009 Dual Arm Robots: Motoman comes out with their new dual-arm robots: SDA10 and VA1400.

2010 Yaskawa Motoman Robot­ics: Motoman Inc. and Yaskawa Elec­tric Amer­i­ca com­bine to form Yaskawa Amer­i­ca with a Motoman Robot­ics Divi­sion. This change allows the com­pa­ny to more effec­tive­ly tar­get the glob­al marketplace.

2010 New Facil­i­ties: Yaskawa Motoman breaks ground on a new 300,000 sq ft facil­i­ty as they make a move from West Car­roll­ton and Troy to Miamis­burg, Ohio.

2011 Faster Pick-and-Place Robot: A new­er body style for quick­er pick-and-place and sort­ing appli­ca­tions with Motoman’s new FS100 & MPP3 robots.

We are excit­ed to con­tin­ue watch­ing Motoman inno­vate and bring amaz­ing indus­tri­al robot solu­tions across the globe! Con­tact Robots​.com experts today for more infor­ma­tion on Motoman robot­ics at 8777626881 or through our con­tact form.

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