As the adoption of robotic automation increases with industries and businesses opting to automate their operational processes, it has become necessary to spread robot literacy at the grassroots level, that is, through schools and institutions. The next decade will be governed by the synchronisation between human workforce and robots, necessitating the need to educate the youth and encourage learning of automation systems.
Spearheading this purpose is the concept called ‘Cobots’, which means “collaborative robots”. It is a project initiated by Universal Robots in 2008, and ever since the market has exploded tremendously with industrial experts factoring its growth to reach $3 billion in global revenues by the year 2020. You can read more about the history of Cobots here.
How are Cobots Helping Create Awareness?
Cobots function within the education industry where the students are given a first-hand experience of handling and working with robots. The Cobots is an interactive platform which encourages students to engage with industrial applications and automation processes.
Universal Robots have established the Universal Robots Academy, which is an e-learning program with six modules, with which students can learn the workings of a robot and master user engagement. The e-learning program is available for free and available in Spanish, English, French, Chinese and German languages. Commenting on the overall program, the CTO and Founder Esben Østergaard had this to say:
“We want to raise the robot literacy, and the reason for speeding up the entry of Cobots is not only to optimise production…we are facing a looming skills gap in the manufacturing industry that we need to bridge by all means possible.”
The purpose of robot literacy is to facilitate the creation of learning and knowledge programs, to give students access to robots early in education, and creating interest in them to choose robotic engineering and other related fields as they opt for higher studies.
Cobots are a powerful learning tool. Schools like the RAMTEC Career Center in Ohio use the modules to teach its students. It takes students hours to learn as compared to the day’s another curriculum would consume. The Cobots are flexible, safe for a classroom and easily programmable. Cobots are creating the next generation of robot engineers.