National Robotics Week, also known as RoboWeek, is a week designed to celebrate robotics and inspire people to take interest in them. It’s a time to look at the innovations that have been made in the field and how it’s encouraged more young people to get into STEM subjects.

Perhaps this sounds like a celebration for children, but it’s not – after all, robotics heavily influence our everyday lives. Roombas have been in used in homes worldwide since 2002 to replace manual vacuums. Medical robots have also become more common, with robot-assisted minimally invasive surgeries being performed as early as 2007. The world is changing thanks to robotics.

This is especially true in the manufacturing industry. Robots have been implemented to do more automated and repetitive tasks, from welding to assembly to handling raw materials to packing.

Beneficial to Mankind

Despite pop culture giving us iconic robot villains such as Hal 9000 and Skynet, in reality, robots in manufacturing keep people in the workplace safer. This isn’t just limited to being used to handle hazardous materials or in working in potentially volatile environments. The robots that are most commonly being used in today’s factories and workplaces are designed to take over tasks that can cause long-term wear-and-tear on the human body.

There are some jobs that, especially when done over long periods of time, can cause issues in the human body and reduce your quality of life as you age. Heavy lifting can cause back strain, spinal issues, and muscle tears. Repetitive motion tasks can result in musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). While robots can also suffer the effects of time and strain, their parts are much easier to replace and won’t leave anyone with a hefty medical bill or years of physical discomfort.

Then there are injuries that robots  can prevent. Falling hazards are massively reduced when a robot can reach items that a person would need to use aerial equipment for. Accidental burns from welding aren’t a problem for robots. And because they don’t get tired, they won’t suffer worker’s fatigue, which is a common cause of workplace accidents.

Are Human Jobs At Risk?

There are some who might believe that robotics will eliminate the need for human workers in the manufacturing industry, but this is a gross exaggeration. Automation might increase over the next ten years, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t still a great need for skilled human workers in the industry. Automated machines don’t have the capacity for making quick decisions outside of their programming, and humans are still necessary to build, program, and fix them when they break, among other jobs. It’s about adapting to the new technology and realizing what new jobs can be created by the addition of robots.

At AMTEP, we offer free training programs in robotics. It introduces the concepts and technology used in modern manufacturing, as well as hands-on training. The concepts and skills you’ll learn during the program are relevant to the set up, programming, running and troubleshooting automated equipment and industrial robots.

Starting on the first Saturday of April every year, National Robotics Week is a great way to discover and appreciate the way robotics have changed the industry, and appreciate the opportunities they offer us for the future. Check out our schedule for free training programs and start a new career path in this age of robotics.