It’s been a busy day today here at Automatica 2022. And it’s just Day 1!

The sun has been beating down on Munich all day, so many of the visitors have been taking it as an impromptu beer festival, with German sausages and prezels to go along.

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Here at the Robotiq booth, we’ve had some great conversations with visitors who are keen to learn more about collaborative robotics and how it can be used in their own applications. We showed you one of our demos in our previous post today. 

We’ve also seen some incredible robots in action, as well as some of the weird and wonderful things that make this trade fair such a fun event. 

Here are some of the highlights from today…

A man takes his robot for a walk

There is a huge variety of people here at the trade fair this year. It’s not just automation engineers and factory owners. Families, students, researchers, children, programmers… you name it, they’re here!

Lots of people… but we haven’t seen any pets here though. However, we did pass this man taking his robot for a walk earlier today.

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You wouldn’t your robot to run away on its own would you!

Rubber ducks and tigers? Well, why not?

Well, okay. There have actually been a few animals at the event. At least, of the toy kind. 

This regal-looking tiger was hanging out on a pallet in one booth – slowly moving up and down on a lifting machine.

It’s certainly a novel way to get people to pay attention to your booth! 

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We understand… not all automation machines are as eye-catching as robots. 

I mean, how do you make a conveyor belt look interesting?…

By attaching rubber ducks to it, of course! These were moving into a fish tank with a little dinosaur in it. It’s certainly colorful!

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Agility is the way to thrive

We’ve also been asking around to keep on top of the trends in the industry, that we made some predictions about before the trade fair began. 

One person who summed up the current situation for many manufacturers was Peng-Sang Cau from ATS Life Sciences in her talk at the automaticaForum. 

She started by saying that the world is in turmoil right now (which I think many of us can relate to). Labor shortages, geopolitical strains, the impact of the global pandemic… and now a war in Ukraine, which is on a lot of people’s minds right now and is causing many manufacturers to hesitate to automate amid such uncertainty. 

How can we overcome these challenges? By becoming agile, adaptable, and resiliant (which, she explained, are really the same thing).

Cau challenged the conventional tradeoff of flexibility vs speed in manufacturing. Usually, we see that raising your flexibility means reducing your speed. But, she argued, in this modern world, agility *is* speed.

And reshoring (supported by automation) is part of that for many manufacturers.

She finished by saying “I see agility winning the race. In the factory of the future, I don’t see a maze of custom automation. I see moduluar, flexible solutions. Let us all stop watching all these changes around us. Let us be a part of it.”

This is certainly the ethos we follow at Robotiq, and the flexible application kits we are displaying this year are a perfect example of that drive for agility. 

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The virtual world is coming… offline?

Amid so many people enjoying beers in the sunshine, we spotted these entertaining people… walking around wearing their virtual reality headsets.

Well, there is a lot of talk about the rise of digital twins, isn’t there? I guess the next step is to bring your digital twin offline, by just wearing a VR headset all the time!

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Video of our day’s highlights

Are the photos not helping you feel you’re part of the action? We can help with that!

Here’s a video of our highlights from today:

Time to relax, with a UR party

Day 1 is over. Are we taking it easy and relaxing? 

Not quite. As in previous years, our booth is attached to that of Universal Robots. And they are hosting a party tonight!

So we’ll see you tomorrow, with blurry eyes and big smiles on our faces! 

As they say here in Germany… Prost! 

 

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By GIL