Translated by
2020/02/12 18:00:58

Industrial robots

Carry the self-contained units consisting of the mechanical manipulator and a reprogrammable system of management which are used to movement of objects in space and for accomplishment of different production processes to industrial robots.

Industrial robots are important components of the automated flexible production systems (FPS) which allow to increase labor productivity.

This article of TAdviser is devoted to the overview of the market of this equipment.



Overview of TAdviser: Russian market of industrial robotics

Estimating results of 2019, specialists say about small deceleration of growth of the market that it is connected with the fact that large projects in automotive industry have property of recurrence. Nevertheless, assessment of specialists is optimistic and predicts the general positive dynamics.

Main article: Russian market of industrial robotics


The companies in the USA began to implement less robots

In the middle of February, 2020 it became known that in 2019 the American companies were set by less robots, than the previous year. Such reduction is noted for the first time since 2015 and is connected with decline in production against the background of trade wars and lower demand.

Deliveries of production robots to the USA dropped more than by 16%, according to data of Association of assistance to development. In 2019 deliveries also fell in Mexico, having reduced by 25% while deliveries in Canada practically did not change.

Deliveries of production robots to the USA dropped more than by 16%

The main goal of the president Donald Trump consisted in inducing producers to return jobs to the USA, presumably using automation and robotics which would allow the domestic plants to compete with cheaper labor power in China and other countries. But this undertaking failed because of deceleration of rates of production.

The vice president of Association of promotion of automation Alexander Shikany told that recession will probably be short. By words Shikany, an idea of growth of automation in the coming months give generally orders for new robots, and this indicator grew at the end of 2019 by 1.6%. This growth is generally caused by orders from car makers who, by words Shikany, decided to deliver on robotics in the following wave of innovations.

There are also companies which did not reduce installation of robots in 2019. Among them Hytrol Conveyor Co Inc, private company from the State of Arkansas which makes conveyer belts and which sales volume last year was more than $200 million. Thanks to the growing demand from the enterprises of e-commerce, the company spent $1.9 million for automation of the assembly line. At the same time investments did not reduce jobs. Number of staff at the Hytrol Conveyor plant for the last three years increased by 18%. Income, meanwhile, grew almost by a quarter.[1]

Record sales in the world are IFR

According to the International federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR), the volume of the world market of industrial robots in 2018 reached record 422 thousand pieces for the amount of $16.5 billion that is 6% more than indicators of year prescription. These digits were provided on September 20, 2019.

Asia saved the first place on sales of industrial robots though the countries in the region showed versatile dynamics. For example, in China and South Korea the number of new projects was reduced, and in Japan — grew. All Asian market added 1%.

The countries with the greatest density of use of robots, data of IFR

In Europe the gain is registered by 14%. Positive dynamics is observed the sixth year in a row. The European industrial robot market remained the second in value in the world.

Sale of industrial robots in North and South America at the end of 2018 jumped by 20% that is a record result in six years.

According to the forecast of IFR, global deliveries of industrial robots in 2019 will a little decrease, but then growth — approximately for 12% annually to the 2022nd will be observed.

Follows from the report that in 2018 about 99 industrial robots were the share of 10 thousand employees of the enterprises in the world. Among regions the greatest indicator is recorded in Europe — 114. Density of use of robots at the plants was measured in the states of North and South America 99-mya on 10 thousand workers, in Asia/Australia — 91-mya.

Most quicker the share of robots during the period from 2013 to 2018 grew in the Asian countries — approximately for 16% a year. In Europe annual dynamics was +6%, in North and South America — +6%.

Nearly two thirds of sales of industrial robots fall (and will continue to have in the medium term) on automotive industry and release of electronics. Among other perspective scopes of robots researchers call metal working, agriculture, the nuclear industry, sudo-and aircraft construction, mineral extraction.

Forecast for deliveries of industrial robots, data of IFR

More and more wide circulation of an autonomous machinery is promoted by a number of factors: reduction in cost of solutions owing to rapid development of technologies, growth of investments into the corresponding developments (expresses the aspiration to reduce the price and in general to optimize production, reducing influence of a human factor) and also the accurate course towards large-scale upgrade of the industry taken by the government of the People's Republic of China. By right called by "the world workshop", China in huge degree affects the general dynamics of industrial production in the world — and therefore changes in industrial sectors of economy of this single country directly and arkhiznachimo are reflected in a universal status of the corresponding markets.

Experts expected that the market of electronics will become the largest consumer of industrial robots in the world, having outstripped automotive industry. However in 2018 demand for electronic devices and components was reduced in many respects because of the deterioration in a trade situation caused by escalation of the conflict between the USA and China.

In 2018 the enterprises working in the field of electronics were established in total by 105 thousand industrial robots that is 14% less than an indicator of year prescription. 2017 was record for the industry.

Metal-working and mechanical engineering industry is called thirds on value the industry where robots are on sale. In 2018 10% of the general demand in the market fell to its share.

74% of deliveries of industrial robots in global scale were the share of China, Japan, South Korea, the USA and Germany in 2018. The share of the People's Republic of China made 36% or 154 thousand units. Though it is less, than in 2017, in the Chinese market more systems, than in the countries of Europe, North and South America combined are on sale.

Data on deliveries of kobot, data of IFR

Japan saves the status of the leader in production of industrial robots. In 2018 in the country 52% of products of total amount in the world were produced.

The proceeding push to industrial automation led to the fact that the number of the robots implemented in the USA in 2018 grew the eighth time in a row and reached record 40,300. It is 22% more, than in 2017, and the USA took the third position in the world, having selected it at South Korea.

Judging by a research, Russia lags behind on production and implementation of industrial robots. According to Vedomosti with reference to the head "Robotics and Artificial Intelligence" of Skolkovo Foundation Pavel Krivozubov, in Russia production of robots develops more slowly, than abroad because this direction sank since the collapse of the USSR and began to be recovered only in recent years, and meanwhile the western competitors developed own solutions. Besides, labor power in the country is cheaper, than in Singapore or the USA that stops industrialists from universal implementation of robots, he added.

Earlier in 2019 the Innopolis university reported that Russia can catch up with world level of development of robotics if to select 132.6 billion rubles for it. The organization came to such conclusion within work on the Digital Economy national project.

In the report of the International federation of robotics deliveries of so-called joint robots (kobot) which carry out tasks on one platform with people were for the first time considered. In 2018 about 14 thousand such devices against 11.1 thousand worldwide were shipped the previous year. The quantity of the set kobot in a year grew by 23%.[2]

Growth of the Russian market in 2018 for 42%

In 2018 the amount of the Russian industrial robot market in kind was 1007 pieces, having increased by 43% concerning the 2017th. Such data are provided by the National Association of Participants of the Market of Robotics (NAPMR), referring to the International robotic federation (IFR).

Despite the notable growth of the market, it is only about 5 robots on 10 thousand employees of industrial enterprises that 20 times are less than average value in the world. In Singapore, for example, 831 robots are the share of 10 thousand workers.

The amount of the Russian industrial robot market grew by 42%

As the representative of NAURR Alice Konyukhovskaya explained to Vedomosti, industrial robots are automatic programmable manipulators.

According to these IFR for 2018, Russia took the 27th place on sales of industrial robots. The first five included China, Japan, the USA, South Korea and Germany.

About 40% of robots in Russia are installed at the automobile building enterprises: in 2018 390 items of equipment against 262 in the 2017th were the share of automotive industry. These enterprises buy robots as are forced to adapt to demand and changes of a lineup.

The high demand on industrial robots is also observed at mechanical engineering (16% of sales) and the food industry, speak in NAURR. However data on the exact number of the robots installed at the food enterprises, it is difficult to experts to collect.

Only 4% of the industrial robots installed in Russia in 2018 are manufactured in Russia. Production of this equipment is in the country in embryo that is connected with the small amount of the market, explain in NAURR. According to Alice Konyukhovskaya, the Russian enterprises do not consider robots as means of improving competitiveness and do not want to increase cost efficiency.

The state enterprises can not worry cost reductions. The expediency of implementation of robots is better estimated in highly competitive segments by the private sector which got used to count money — she specified.[3]


The volume of the world market of industrial robots was $16.5 billion in terms of money

On April 16, 2020 the Ministry of digital development, communication and mass communications of the Russian Federation together with the National Association of Participants of the Market of Robotics (NAPMR) prepared a research about the perspective directions of application of robotics in business. Special attention was paid to use of robotics in such spheres as the processing and mining industry, agriculture, logistics, provision of services, a cleaning and others.

So, according to the International federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR), the volume of the world market of industrial robots in 2018 was 422 thousand units or $16.5 billion in terms of money. The market of industrial robotics grew by 6% in 2017-2018. The most demanded type of robots are robotic manipulators. The most popular transactions for automation - welding, soldering, cutting, handling transactions.

World sales of industrial robots and forecast of their growth (thousand pieces)

The Russian market of industrial robotics in 2018 grew by 42% in comparison with previous year. On industrial enterprises in 2018 1007 robots were installed (in 2017 - 713 robots). On number of the sold robots in a year Russia took the 27th place in the world. The size of the market of industrial robots in Russia was 3 billion rubles. The size of the market of robotic solutions was 9.1 billion rubles. Also integrated equipment, the software, design, engineering, commissioning, etc. belong to the market of robotic solutions, in addition to robots. In total at the Russian enterprises in 2019 about 5,000 robots were used. Read more here.

30% of world sales of industrial robots are the share of China

About 30% of sales of industrial robots in the world were the share of the Chinese market at the end of 2018. Such data bring in the International federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics) in July the 2019th.

Judging by the diagram which was submitted by the Beijing research company Marketing Intelligence Resource, in 2018 deliveries of industrial robots in Celestial Empire made about 190 thousand units that it is twice more, than two years before.

Deliveries of industrial robots in China, assessment and the forecast of Marketing Intelligence Resource

Total investments into development of "smart" production into the People's Republic of China in the 2018th reached 69.6 billion yuans (about $10.1 billion) that for 46% exceeds an indicator of year prescription. The number of the investment transactions subsidized with the state remained invariable — 100 while the number of not subsidized transactions doubled and grew till 1000.

Robotics is considered by the government of China as a crucial element of strategy under the name Made in China 2025 within which the country aims to become completely self-sufficient in the technology roadmap and to save competitiveness of the industries on the international scene. According to this plan, the share of the industrial robots made within the country should rise up to 70% by 2025 against 30% in the 2017th.

In China the great demand for industrial robots is observed long ago. In 2013 the country outstripped Japan and became the world's largest market of such equipment. One third more robots, than in Japan were come to the end of 2018 on 10 thousand workers in China. And experts are sure that this separation will increase, despite problems with investments which arose in the conditions of aggravation of the trade conflict with the USA.

The Nikkei edition listed the main producers of industrial robots in China:

  • Adtech Shenzhen Technology;
  • Efort Intelligent Equipment;
  • Nanjing Estun Automation;
  • Shenzhen Inovance Technology;
  • [4]

Preliminary data of IFR: Sales volume — 421 thousand industrial robots

Though final data for 2018 are not provided yet, but, according to the preliminary information obtained by Sberbank from the International federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR), growth in sales of robots in 2018 made from 1% to 10% in comparison with 2017. Thus, assessment of number of the industrial robots sold in 2018 makes up to 421,000. Read more here.

In a year in Russia 860 industrial robots are implemented. In total in the world – 384 thousand

According to the report of the National Association of Participants of the Market of Robotics (NAPMR), provided on April 24, 2019, in 2018 in Russia 860 robots were established that is 21% more, than in 2017. For comparison, in China for the same period 133,200 industrial robots, in Japan – 52,400 were implemented.

In Russia the number of the implemented industrial robots grew

In Russia the ratio of number of robots on 10,000 workers made 4 robots, at the average world indicator: 106 robots for Europe, 91 – for America and 75 – for Asia.

On the level of robotization the automotive industry is in the lead: 378 robots are employed at the enterprises of carmakers in Russia (growth was 44% in comparison with 2017). 602 robots work in other industries, from them 19% are involved in metallurgical industry.

NAURR estimates the total amount of the industrial robot market in Russia at 2.5 billion rubles, the market of the robotic systems – in 7.5 billion rubles.

As for world statistics on robotization, it was read by Andreas Bauer, the vice president for corporate marketing of KUKA company and in combination the Chairman of the Committee of suppliers of robots of the International federation of robotics (IFR). It provided annual official data of the report of federation on market situation of industrial robotics around the world.

So, according to the report, in 2018 more than 384,000 industrial robots were installed at manufacturing enterprises worldwide, it is 1% more, than in 2017, and it is a new record of robotization of production. 15% of global number of the installed robots are the share of 5 largest markets of industrial robotics (China, Japan, the USA, South Korea, Germany).

In the world market of robotization automotive industry remains the leading industry still: in 2018 at the enterprises about 116,000 robots were installed (that is 6% less, than in 2017). On the second place – production of electronics: the number of the installed robots in 2018 grew by 8% up to about 113,000 robots. Both of these industries drew on themselves nearly 60% of industrial robotization of the whole world. The metallurgy and mechanical engineering gradually increases the number of robots, in their 2018 48,000 were set.

The countries with the greatest penetration of industrial robots

At the beginning of April, 2019 the International federation of robotics (IFR) published the research devoted to the level of penetration of industrial robots in the different countries.

First place in rating was won by South Korea in which 710 robots are the share of 10 thousand workers. Top three included Singapore (658 robots) and Germany (322). There is no Russia in this list.

The countries with the greatest penetration of industrial robots — their quantity to 10 thousand workers, data of IFR

Experts pay attention to the seventh place of the USA where 200 robots are the share of 10 thousand employees of the plants and the enterprises. It is twice more, than in China.

In 2018 in the American market the record number of robots — nearly 38 thousand pieces was sold. It was promoted in many respects by the companies which are engaged in food and chemical industry (including plastic processing) which increased expenses on robotics on 64% and 30% respectively.

Most of all robots in the USA are involved in production of cars — in their 2017 there were 1200 pieces in relation to 10 thousand workers against 790 in the 2012th. However car makers reduce purchases of robots: in 2016 record  16,311 units, in the 2017th —  15,400, in the 2018th —  14,600 were purchased. Sales decrease approximately by 7% a year, but 38% of all industrial robots in the USA were the share of automotive industry in 2018.

According to Bureau of Labor Statistics of the USA, the general employment in the automotive industry increased by 22% — from 824,400 jobs in 2013 up to 1,005,000 in the 2018th. These data show that, despite industrial automation of cars and component parts to them, the unemployment problem in this sector is absent.

 Electronics industry with 18 percent to a share in a total quantity of the used equipment became the second in number of the purchased robots in the USA. Producers of electronics increase implementation of robots approximately for 15% a year.[5]

The robot nearly killed the worker, having pierced it with 10 steel probes

On December 11, 2018 it became known of accident which happened to the 49-year-old Chinese by the name of Zhou. In it 10 steel probes as a result of falling of the manipulator which flew from the industrial robot pierced. Fortunately, the worker managed to be saved, despite strong damages.

Incident occurred on December 4, 2018 at porcelain factory in the city of Chu-chou (the Province of Hunan in the southeast of China) during a night shift. From the fallen part of the robot thorns 30 cm long and with a diameter of 1.5 cm which were thrust in a back, a shoulder and Zhou's hand took off. Some of them passed through, and one metal probe stopped in only 1 mm from an important nerve ganglion in chest department — in the area between a clavicle and the first edge. Still slightly and at the victim severe hemorrhage which strongly would reduce chances of survival could begin.

Operation on removal of 10 metal probes took place successfully

With severe wounds the man was taken to local hospital from where he was sent to clinic in the capital of the province. Because of probes he could not lie neither on a back, nor on a stomach. Its wounds processed more than ten nurses and doctors from different departments. Early in the morning the worker was operated and successfully took all probes, reports the Daily Mail edition with reference to People's Daily Online.

The surgeon Wu Panfeng who operated with Zhou, told that because of the big length of metal probes the patient could not undergo x-ray scanning. After transaction which took place successfully the status of the man was stabilized. Nothing threatens his life.[6]

In  August, 2018 it was reported that the worker in China survived after his head was pierced by a three-meter metal rod. The victim was operated, took the rod which entered a brain on 20 cm and recovered a skull.

By 2020 3 million robots will be involved in the industry worldwide

Sberbank published on April 25, 2018 the state-of-the-art review of the world market of robotics prepared by Laboratory of robotics of Sberbank. According to the overview, growth rates of the market of industrial robotics advance growth rates of world GDP: between 2011 and 2016 annual average growth in sales of industrial robots made 12%. According to the estimates of IFR (International Federation of Robotics), in 2016 was sold to 294 thousand industrial robots that is 16% more than in 2015, and the total amount of the market reached $13.1 billion (taking into account software, the periphery and services of integration the market exceeds $40 billion).

Meanwhile, the market of service robotics grows even quicker. So, in 2015 48 thousand professional service robots were sold, and in 2016 this number increased by 24% to 59 thousand. The total amount of the market of professional service robots reached $4.7 billion.

The total quantity of the sold personal service robots in 2016 increased by 24%, having reached about 6.7 million units, and the total amount of the market increased to $2.6 billion. For example, in the world already more than 20 million robots vacuum cleaners who promptly become cheaper owing to increase in the competition, noted in Sberbank.

Industrial robotics grows on average for 15% a year due to rapid robotization of the Chinese economy and while growth of service robotics has deeper reasons: the most part of world economy is service economy. For this reason service robotics shows more significant growth (at the level of 25% a year) at rather smaller digits in absolute value in comparison with industrial, said in the overview.

According to Sberbank, the situation with robotics in Russia is total reflection of the trend described above. In spite of the fact that Russia — on the penultimate place in the world on robotization density in the industry, our country, according to statistics of IFR, enters in top-20 the manufacturing countries of service robotics. It means that in the field at our country the good potential for growth. A ratio of industrial and service robototekhnik in Russia — 1 to 10.

Density of robotization is considered as the number of industrial robots on 10 thousand workers occupied in the industry. The general falling of industrial production in Russia in comparison with the USSR led to the fact that in Russia the low density of robotization.

91% of all industrial robots in 2016 were installed in the sector of manufacturing industry. The annual average growth rate of sales on all industries of manufacturing industry in 2011-2016 was 13%; for automotive industry — 12%, and for electronic industry — 19%.

As for service robots, them most of all in absolute expression is on sale for logistics (~ 25 thousand units), military application (~ 11 thousand), for commercial spaces (~ 7 thousand), field works and exoskeletons (on ~ 6 thousand).

For personal use in 2016 in the world 6.7 million robots for the amount of $2.6 billion, 4.6 million from them — robots for house tasks (generally vacuum cleaners) and for entertainment — 2.1 million were purchased (generally toys).

74% of world sales of industrial robots are the share of five countries: China (30%), Republic Korea (14%), Japan (13%), USA (11%) and Germany (7%). In Russia in 2016 358 industrial robots were sold.

According to estimates of IFR, the world operational park of industrial robots will grow approximately from 1,828 thousand units at the end of 2016 to 3,053 thousand units by the end of 2020 that corresponds to annual average growth rates in 14% in 2018-2020.

Experts of Laboratory of Sberbank consider the directions which by 2020 will form a basis of the market of industrial and service robotics:

  • pilotless passenger transport
  • robots for commercial spaces;
  • robots interlocutors (assistants);
  • logistic robots and pilotless cargo transport;
  • collaborative robots;
  • industrial exoskeletons;
  • robots for agriculture.
  • robots for customer service;
  • industrial exoskeletons;
  • robots for house tasks (personal assistants).

From 13 most noticeable producers of industrial robots in international market eight — FANUC, Yaskawa, Kawasaki, Nachi, Denso, Mitsubishi, Epson and Omron — Japanese. Other five companies — from the European Union: ABB, Stäubli, Kuka, Comau, Universal Robots.

The main player in the market of service robotics is the USA: in total 49% of service robots are produced in America. Asia significantly lags behind — only 30%, in Europe — 21%. However Asian producers were already ahead of Europeans in the field of personal robotics, noted in Sberbank. Despite unconditional leadership in the number of the sold service robots, cedes the USA to Europe by the number of producers. So, in 2016 by the number of manufacturing companies the European region (44%) was in the lead, North America (35%) and Asia (21%) considerably lagged behind.

According to the estimates of Laboratory of Sberbank, in Russia about 80 companies conducting developments in the field of robotics actively work. Some of them are already engaged in successful export of the products. But while the Russian market of industrial robotics is small — its volume was less than 10 billion rubles in 2016.


Sales of industrial robots exceeded 380 thousand pieces

In 2017 about 380.6 thousand industrial robots were sold worldwide that is 29.3% more than result for previous year in 294.3 thousand robots. Such data with reference to the report of World Robotics Report 2018 prepared by the International federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR), publish the DigiTimes and Industrial Automation Asia editions.

Dynamics of a market change of industrial robots

The total amount of the industrial robot market in 2017 was $16.7 billion without the cost of the software. Taking into account the software assessment of the market even higher and makes more than $48 billion Read more here.

Dynamics of sales of industrial robots in the world

By estimates of IFR, nearly a third from total amount, to be exact 125.4 thousand from the industrial robots implemented last year, were purchased by car makers. In comparison with the 2016th the automotive industry increased purchases of robotics by 21%. Though world car sales slow down, the automobile companies continue to robotize production. Especially the trend is expressed in China and among producers of electric vehicles, said in a research.[7]

Besides, sales of robots to the enterprises of the metallurgical, electronic and food industry significantly increased - on these industries the increase made 54%, 27% and 19% respectively.

Dynamics of sales of industrial robots on regions

IFR follows from the report that entered into the three of the largest buyers of industrial robots China, South Korea and Japan: by estimates of IFR, in 2017 these countries set 138, 40 and 39 thousand units of the robotic equipment. Besides, the People's Republic of China showed the highest growth rates - for 58% in comparison with the 2016th.[8]

The USA in rating on the fourth place with result in 33 thousand industrial robots. Further Germany (22 thousand) and Taiwan (11 thousand) follow.

Asia and Australia where producers purchased 255 thousand industrial robots (+34%) was the largest regional market. 67 thousand units of robotics were bought by Europe (+20%) and 50 thousand - North and Latin America (+22%).

China promptly increases production of industrial robots

Production of industrial robots grows in China at prompt rates. At the beginning of December, 2017 the Ministry of the industry and information technologies of the People's Republic of China (Ministry of Industry and Information Technology) reported that as of the end of October, 2017 in the country more than 100 thousand robots are produced.

In comparison with 2016 deliveries of industrial robots increased by 67%. The government of the People's Republic of China calculates that according to the results of all 2017 of shipment of the industrial robotic systems will reach 120 thousand units.

Production of industrial robots to the People's Republic of China, data of Bloomberg, Xinhua, International Federation of Robotics, IFR

In 2016 China produced about 90 thousand industrial robots it is, more, than South Korea and North America combined, transfers Bloomberg with reference to data of the International federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR).

The Chinese news agency of Xinhua also notes that the People's Republic of China is the world's largest industrial robot market to which share about a third of the global sales volume of such systems falls.[9]

It is expected that in 2017 turnover in the Chinese industrial robot market will grow to $4.2 billion, and by 2020 the indicator will reach $5.9 billion.

The robotics is included in the list of key areas of development of the state program of Made in China 2025 which purpose is upgrade of a manufacturing sector of the country.

According to estimates of IFR, in 2015 about two thirds of the robots released in China fell to the share of foreign producers. By the end of 2017 a ratio it was significantly reduced thanks to efforts of the Chinese companies, such as Midea Group and Siasun Robot & Automation, on strengthening of positions in the robotics industry.

In the 2016th Midea purchased the leading world developer of robotics — the German firm Kuka AG, and in October of the 2017th the largest Chinese producer of Siasun robots opened in Shenyang near the headquarters the new industrial[10]

Actions of suppliers rise in price

In the world automation continues to gain steam: the army of robots occupies all new factories, the plants and the warehouse enterprises worldwide. The trend mentioned not only the developed, but also developing economies. However the first, of course, are in the lead on purchases of industrial robots. On November 20, 2017 reported about it to The Financial Times.

Use of robots on shoe production

The advanced machines capable not only to weld kuzova of cars and to raise weights, but also to execute more difficult and delicate transactions — from production of electronic components before laying of chocolates, are more and more demanded in the world. In parallel with demand also the stock exchange quotations of the leading industry members among which there are Japanese companies Fanuc and Yaskawa, the Swiss concern grow ABB and German Kuka. According to the edition, the stocks Yaskawa and Kuka in 2017 rose in price more than twice, and the cost of securities of Fanuc and ABB since the beginning of year increased by 40% and almost for 16% respectively.

The robot of Kuku company shows the accuracy of movements, pouring beer in a glass

Emergence of kobot with the AI elements

Characteristic trend — expansion of the range of robots among whom there were machines with elements of artificial intelligence now, capable to work side by side with people. These are so-called collaborative robots, or the kobota which are specially developed for interaction with the person. Among advantages of such machines there is a possibility of training by simulation.

Kobotam programmers are not necessary. Any can train them, they are very ordinary in use. It is necessary just to click record and to do necessary actions, and then to repeat them several times. After that the machine will reproduce movements in a standalone mode — Jonathan Cohen, the employee of the RoboCap UCITS investment fund specializing in robotics tells about advantages of kobot.

Besides, in comparison with traditional robots, kobota have smaller weight, they are more compacts and are mobile and also are cheap that is especially important for the enterprises of small and medium business.

The market of robotics surely grows the last four-five years, and we optimistically predict that such situation will remain the next three years — Per Vegard Nerseth, the managing director of ABB Robotics company said to the edition.

However distribution of robots generated concerns that over time machines will take away work from people. In September, 2017 the analyst of Deutsche Bank John Cryan said that robots already force out people from jobs and that in the future the trend will amplify.

The alarm is warmed up also by consulting company McKinsey: according to its estimates, in the future from 30% to 60% of the transactions executed by people can be automated.

However the head of ABB Robotics does not separate similar fears. According to him, deficit of employees for accomplishment of the qualified handwork is partly guilty of increase in demand for robots. Often the companies automate too tiresome, dirty or dangerous transactions which people just do not wish to execute.

Many companies experience difficulties because cannot find enough employees on places where manual work is required... Now I do not see that robots actually took away work from people. I would tell, they help the companies to become more competitive and effective — Per Fegard Nerzet noted.[11]

IOActive: Almost any industrial robot can attack the person

Industrial robots have a large amount of vulnerabilities, up to such which allow to deliver them under remote control. Outputs of a research which was conducted by IOActive company whose experts studied program components for robots of six large producers[12] are like that[13].

Directly researchers did not work with robots, but carefully studied program components, including, covers and mobile applications. Results were very unfavourable.

Developments of SoftBank Robotics companies (NAO and Pepper robots), Ubtech Robotics (Alpha 1S and Alpha 2), Robotis (Robotis OP2 and Thormang3), Universal Robots (UR3, UR5 and UR10), Rethink Robotics (Baxter and Sawyer) and also a management system for Asratec Corp V-Sido robots became an object of research.

In total researchers revealed nearly 50 program vulnerabilities connected with the most different aspects of work with these machines: problems with communications, authorization in itself and its mechanisms, enciphering, storage of personal data of users preset by settings and components with the open code are detected.

It became clear, in particular, that vulnerabilities give to malefactors at least a hypothetical opportunity to use cameras and microphones of robots for espionage while other bugs allow capture of control over the device and its uses for causing physical damage.


Implementation of robots at the plants in Eastern Europe

In February, 2018 the Reuters agency published article, the devoted subject as in Eastern Europe implement robots for improvement of production and compensation of staff deficit.

Countries of Eastern Europe faced labor shortage. This situation developed slowly but surely — the foundation for it was laid by financial crisis of 2008, and in 2011 the last restrictions of the legislation constraining outflow of labor power to richer countries of the European Union were cancelled. Though politicians and economists in many countries of the world sound the alarm concerning a negative impact of the robotization of production venting people from jobs, automation became rescue for the local enterprises trying to keep the place in the market.

The companies in Eastern Europe make more and more investments in automation to cope with staff shortage. Rates of robotization of production grew almost by a third – only for 2017 at the enterprises of Central and Eastern Europe 9900 units of robotics were set, i.e. is 28% more, than in 2016. But also it is still not enough to fill all empty jobs. By 2020 deliveries of robotics to this region will grow by 21% though the average indicator of a gain across Europe is only 10%, reported in the report of the International federation of robotics (IFR) which traces the main trends of robotization worldwide.

In Eastern Europe implement robots for improvement of production and compensation of staff deficit

Falling of birth rate and migration outflow became primary reason of labor shortage in countries of Eastern Europe. The population of Eastern Europe slowly grows old as show demographic analyses. According to forecasts of the UN, by 2050 the general population of Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary will be reduced by 8 million and will reach 56 million people. All these changes led to change of labor model of the former communistic states. At first the companies tried to raise the salary the worker, but it appeared insufficiently to convince young people to remain in the country.

Most from the countries of Central and Eastern Europe Hungary suffered. Owners of the enterprises cannot pick up employees on production, and the big routine of the personnel only aggravates a situation. In these conditions forced automation becomes the only reasonable strategy of behavior for the enterprises.

The Hungarian producer of tension seat belts Hirtenberger Automotive Safety spent €2.5 million for installation of robotics in two production blocks. Current situation is the most profitable it appeared for producers of robotics. Revenue of Vesz-Mont 2000 company in 2017 grew by 10%. In 2018 the enterprise expects to double robotics sales volume. The company could make and earn more, but as it is paradoxical, it lacks workers too.

The most automated country of Eastern Europe is Slovakia. 135 robots are the share of 100,000 workers here. In the Czech Republic — 101, in Hungary — 57, and in Poland — only 32 that is connected with inflow of the Ukrainian migrant workers. However industrial automation demands new skills from employees, and the companies in Eastern Europe already faced a problem of education of the personnel. Some producers already start the training programs for graduates of school.

Economists warn that labor shortage can have negative effects for some countries of Eastern Europe which will be shown until the end of 2020. Analysts of UniCredit note that though gradual staff shortage in labor market developed at least within three last years, 2018 can become a turning point when deficit of labor power begins to influence rates of economic growth of these countries directly. It will be more profitable to some companies to move production to other countries. Though they are not protected. Gradually the problem will extend also to Western Europe. Already now Germany, the Netherlands, France and Great Britain also complain of the shortage of workers, Reuters reports.


The world park of industrial robots - 1.8 million pieces

Data of Laboratory of robotics of Sberbank

  • Growth rates of the market of industrial robotics advance growth rates of world GDP: between 2011 and 2016 annual average growth in sales of industrial robots made 12%. In 2016 294 thousand industrial robots were sold, and the total amount of the market reached $13.1 billion (taking into account the software and services of integration the market exceeds $40 billion).

  • The general world ̆ the park of the exploited industrial robots for the end of 2016 grew to 1,828 thousand units. According to estimates of IFR, the world operational park of industrial robots will grow approximately from 1,828 thousand units at the end of 2016 to 3,053 thousand units at the end of 2020 that corresponds to annual average growth rates in 14% in 2018-2020.

  • 91% of all industrial robots in 2016 were installed in the sector of manufacturing industry.

  • The annual average growth rate of sales on all industries of manufacturing industry in 2011-2016 was 13%; for automotive industry — 12%, and for electronic ̆ the industries — 19%.

  • 74% of world sales of industrial robots are the share of five countries: China (30%), Republic Korea (14%), Japan (13%), USA (11%) and Germany (7%). In 2016 in Russia 358 industrial robots were sold.

  • The Russian market of industrial robotics is small (less than 10 billion rubles in 2016). There are less than 10 domestic manufacturers, but even they have industrial robots not core business because of what they lose to foreign competitors both as the product, and in convenience of service.

300 thousand industrial robots for $13.1 billion (+18%) are sold

According to the International Federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR), in 2016 global proceeds from sales of industrial robots grew by 18% and reached record volume in $13.1 billion. In total in the world nearly 300 thousand such machines from which three quarters purchased five countries — China, South Korea, Japan, the USA and Germany were implemented.

Annual deliveries of industrial robots (one thousand pieces), by regions. Data of the International Federation of robotics (International Federation of Robotics, IFR)

Forecast of Markets and Markets

According to the forecast of Markets and Markets research company, by 2023 the size of the market of industrial robots will grow to $71 billion from $38 billion in 2016.

Data of Boston Consulting Group

Any large-scale modern production does not do without the help of industrial robots who are widely used to processes of welding, movement of products, processing, coloring, assembly, etc. The cumulative number of industrial robots in the world already exceeds 1.3 million units. According to the forecast of Boston Consulting Group, by 2025 the share of the tasks solved using robots will reach 26%.

The Russian share in the world volume of consumption of robots at the moment makes less than 1%, and robotization density — 2 robots on 10 thousand workers. It is caused including the fact that technology processes on domestic productions became outdated and need upgrade. Among the main problems: a lack of knowledge of robotization opportunities, complexity of joining and coordination of components of a robotic complex, need of each robot to program separately, the shortage of software for design, weak educational infrastructure, etc.

2014: Automotive industry - the main consumer of robots

The automotive industry became the leading industry on use of robots at the end of 2014.

In what industries industrial robots are used

2010: 60 thousand robots for $5 billion, 70% in automotive industry are sold

Global production volume of industrial robots was expressed approximately in 60 thousand pieces (about $5 billion) which 70% were purchased by the enterprises of world automotive industry.

According to Vladimir Serebrenny, the director of production of technology equipment and the equipment (PTOO) of AvtoVAZ (April, 2011), the Russian industry feels the need for acquisition of 300-400 robots in a year, and about 200 of them are made PTOO for own needs of AvtoVAZ[15]. The cost of one robot at the same time was "from 2 to 3 million rubles", thus Serebrenny estimates the volume of the domestic market of industrial robotics in the range from 600 million rubles up to 1.2 billion rubles ($20 - $40 million) in a year.

World leaders of production of industrial robotics are the Japanese companies Fanuc and Motoman, Swedish ABB and the German Kuka.

Sales volumes of their only Russian competitor of PTOO "AvtoVAZ" are limited to "tens of sales in the Russian market".

Since 1984, Serebrenny tells, PTOO made the equipment licensed by Kuka company for automobile works, however in 2007 mastered release of own models of technology robots for welding and transport works and also for putting mastics and sealants.

In the early eighties, Vladimir Serebrenny notices, the USSR took the third place in the world on number of the released industrial robots after the USA and Japan. Now perspectives of its enterprise consist in development of the agreement with Renault Nissan concern, affiliated with AvtoVAZ, on delivery of assembly lines and robots of development of PTOO to the enterprises of the French-Japanese alliance.

1961: First-ever industrial robot

The first-ever industrial Ultimate robot began to work at the General Motors (GM) plant. Programs for his hand weighing 1200 kg were stored on a magnetic drum.