Innovactionary, the glossary of innovation: Cobot

The word of innovation today:

Cobot, or collaboratives robots, a technology that is expanding and revolutionizing the logistics and factory automation sectors.

But what exactly is this about? What makes a cobot different from a simple industrial robot?

The cobot is a robot, not necessarily humanoid, designed to share the same working environment with humans and to collaborate with them in conditions of total safety. Therefore, safe and intelligent interaction with the worker: this is the character that uniquely identifies the cobot and distinguishes it from traditional industrial machinery.

Work in progress learning, on the other hand, is only a possible and unnecessary feature. It is the machine's ability to learn by replicating and memorizing the maneuvers and operations shown to it by man. As already mentioned, it belongs only to some cobots.

A study of McKinsey International. A study has estimated that by 2030 this new form of technology will be able to replace some 800 million jobs. A prediction that, superficially, refers to a science fiction scenario in which man becomes the victim of his own inventions. In reality, this is not the case.

The cobot was also created to perform a social function and therefore to replace men in the use of dangerous, repetitive and wearisome activities allowing them to devote themselves to collateral functions that, in the panorama of Industry 4.0, will be increasingly necessary: management of Big Data, cloud infrastructures and artificial intelligence.

The phenomenon of cobots is recent, but the term has been around for some time, to be precise since the mid-1990s. The first to use it were two professors at Northwestern University, J.Edward Colgate and Michael Peshkin, today considered the fathers and precursors of this technology.

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