ABB unveils new YuMi cobot; announces cobot automation cooperation with Kawasaki

|November 30, 2017 0

SWITZERLAND: Building on the success of YuMi, the collaborative, dual-arm industrial robot, ABB has now unveiled its single-arm collaborative robot, which combines cutting-edge capabilities with a much smaller footprint.

As their name suggests, collaborative robots are designed to work alongside humans on the factory floor to raise productivity and support the transition to mass customization. The YuMi robot makes it possible for people and robots to safely share common tasks such as assembling small electronics.

The robot will be officially launched in 2018. ABB previewed the collaborative robot, at the International Robotics Exhibition (iREX) 2017 in Tokyo.

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Like YuMi, a small-parts assembly robot introduced in 2015, the new robot has a payload of 500 grams and, thanks to its compactness, is easily integrated into existing assembly lines, increasing productivity. The new robot also features lead-through programming, eliminating the need for specialized training for operators.

“The success of YuMi has exceeded expectations; it was originally designed for small-parts assembly, but it has turned out to be exceptionally versatile – it can solve a Rubik’s Cube, make sushi, wrap gifts and conduct an orchestra. Based on YuMi’s enormous success, we fully expect our new single-arm robot to be equally well-received, especially since it was developed at the request of customers,” said Sami Atiya, President of ABB’s Robotics and Motion division.

“We continue to build our collaborative robotics portfolio,” said Per Vegard Nerseth, Managing Director, ABB Robotics. “The newest robot is a much anticipated addition to the ‘factory of the future,’ enabling our customers to grow and thrive in the age of mass customization. Combining this robot with our ABB Ability digital solutions will allow our customers to take efficiency and reliability in their factories to the next level.”

ABB said the company will join forces with Kawasaki Heavy Industries to share knowledge and promote the benefits of collaborative robots, in particular those with dual arm designs. Kawasaki offers a very unique Dual-Arm SCARA Robot “duAro”, which can safely collaborate with humans in the workplace.

“Collaborative robots, especially those with two arms capable of human interactions, can greatly contribute to society and help the world cope with labor shortages and an aging workforce. We see high potential in expanding collaborative applications and processes where people and technology work together to create solutions,” said Yasuhiko Hashimoto, Managing Executive Officer and General Manager, Kawasaki Robot Division.

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