Once guardians of large- and heavy-part handling, robots are now involved in moving the smallest and most delicate of parts with dexterity. Vision technology advances have led to robots being able to pick and place randomly located parts. From three-dimensional bin picking to food-grade applications, robotics are moving into new manufacturing frontiers.

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Mining operations


Daimler, the German auto giant behind the Mercedes-Benz marque and numerous commercial-vehicle brands, delivered a big blow to France’s Dassault Systemes when it decided to exit the longtime, popular CATIA system. The move could have significant ramifications.

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Recovering global economic conditions will spur “quite impressive” growth in the worldwide industrial machinery market for the next four years, according to IHS. This growth is materializing from more need for consumer essentials such as cars and food, as well as oil and gas exploration, construction, and green energy.

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Although individual market segments — motors and motor controls, digital machine controllers, and power-transmission equipment — will be driven differently, the common theme is still efficient operation. Market growth in Asia-Pacific will set the pace globally.

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Will Ng big cropped

A lot of the manufacturing conversation has centered lately on Industry 4.0, aka Industrial Internet, aka digital manufacturing, aka advanced manufacturing. Semantics aside, these terms all mean one thing: fully automated, intelligent, and self-regulating factories powered by autonomous robots and orchestrations of production control data and digital information.

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