Collaborative Robot Sawyer Enters Korean Market
Shane Laros posted on October 12, 2016 |
Sawyer is the one-armed variant of the original Baxter from Rethink Robotics.
Sawyer is the one-armed variant of the original Baxter from Rethink Robotics.

South Korea is regarded as a technological innovator by many, with Seoul attributed as a “tech capital of the world.” Thus, it can be surprising to hear that a Korean company would be importing industrial automation solutions.

Korean pneumatic equipment manufacturer TPC Mechatronics has recently outfitted its facilities with collaborative robots (cobots) from US-based Rethink Robotics and plans to incorporate Sawyer into customer factories to increase production efficiencies and bring the industry toward a smart factory model.

But what makes Sawyer stand apart from regular cobots? Maybe its “friendly face."



Eyes may be the window to a human's soul, and Sawyer’s display isn't much different - it shows detailed information during programming and diagnostics. The eyes also serve a purpose in acting as a cue to human co-workers, indicating the direction the robot arm is about to reach. Cameras mounted on the robot arm and “head” can also help prevent accidents.

Another friendly addition is Rethink Robotics’ Intera operating system, providing easier programming than older iterations. Rather than using only coordinates, Sawyer can be programmed by demonstration, moving the arm in the sequence required. The system adapts to changing environments and interruptions intelligently, making it simple for factory workers to interact with the cobot.

TPC Mechatronics has identified factory automation as a driving force behind industrial development.

"Collaborative robotics will continue to be a key driver of productivity and innovation in manufacturing," said TPC Mechatronics spokesperson Lawrence Uhm. "The efficiency, opportunity and safety that Sawyer gives our customers embodies our founding principles of creativity, judgement and action."

Cobots like Sawyer and others are finding increased use as manufacturing moves towards Industry 4.0 and the smart automation that it will require.

More information on Sawyer can be found at the Rethink Robotics website. For information on IIoT and Industry 4.0, check out our white paper.

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