The term robot is coming from the Czech word robota, which means, “Forced labor”. Most common manufacturing robot is the Robotic Arm, which is a mechanical arm, usually programmable which perform the same function or similar to the human arm. The robotic arm usually made up of seven metal segment, joined by six joints. An industrial robot with six joints closely resembles a human arm — it has the equivalent of a shoulder, an elbow, and a wrist.
Types of Robotic Arm:
The robotic arm can be characterized into 5 major categories based on its mechanical structure.
- Cartesian Robot: it has three joints which coincide with standard X-Y-Z Cartesian axes.
- Cylindrical robot: it has a number of joints that rotate on cylindrical axes, which rotate on one fixed rod.
- Spherical or polar arm: they are those with joints that allow it full rotation throughout a spherical Range.
- SCARA Robot: These robots have two parallel rotary joints to allow full movement throughout a plane, typically for pick-and-place work.
- Articulated Robots: most commonly used configuration because of their flexibility in reaching any part of the working envelope. Mostly used in such complex application as welding, drilling and soldering operations.
Robotic arms are typically used for industrial applications. The application is the type of work robot is designed to do.
Different applications will have different requirements. For example, a painting robot will require a small payload but a large movement range. On the other hand, an assembly robot will have a small workspace but will be very precise and fast. Industrial robots are designed for specific applications and based on their function will have their own movement, linkage dimension, control law, software and accessory packages. Below are some types of applications:
- Welding Robot
- Material Handling Robot
- Palletizing Robot
- Painting robot
- Assembly Robot
There are some special types of robotic arms that can be brought into our workspace in near future. Some of them are as follows.
- Dobot Robotic arm: it is a 4-axis robotic arm designed for makers, artist, educators, and scientist. The arm can be controlled with the help of an APP by phone or PC via Bluetooth.
- Make arm: It is mostly used in 3D printers, laser cut and engrave, carve and mill, writes, and plots, PCB fabrication, assembly, picks & place, etc. It can be used as our “personal fabrication system “that can mount on your desktop.
- Collaborative robot: they are manufactured in such a way that they follow some safety standard so that they cannot hurt the human.