Robohub.org
 

Swiss-based ABB to manufacture robots in US

by
24 May 2015



share this:
ABB factory in the US.

ABB factory in the US.

Robot manufacturing started in the US in 1961 when 26 Unimates – the first industrial robots – were made and deployed at a GM factory in Ewing, NJ. But, over the years, manufacturing and manufacturers have moved offshore. Until now.


unimate-at-work-in-nj_350_266_80In fact, the industrial side of the global robotics business has become an offshore enterprise, mostly headquartered in Europe and Japan. The business model has been to set up regional sales and service offices and develop a network of integrators, distributors and value-added resellers. Recently however, some of those manufacturers have begun to produce in-country for a variety of economic and political reasons. Kuka began operating a large manufacturing plant near Shanghai in 2014. Yaskawa began manufacturing at their Changzhou factory in 2013. And now, with this move by ABB, robot manufacturing on a big scale will return to the US.

The United States is ABB’s largest market with $7.5 billion in sales. ABB has invested more than $10 billion in local R&D, capital expenditure and acquisitions, increasing in-country employment from 11,500 to the present total. With this new factory, ABB now employs 26,300 in the US.

“Today, we are marking and celebrating the next stage of our commitment and growth in North America with the start of local robot manufacturing in Auburn Hills, US,” said ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer. “ABB is the first global automation company to open a robot manufacturing facility in the United States. Robotics is a fundamental enabler of the next level of North American industrial growth in an increasingly competitive world. With our continued commitment and investment, our local team is well positioned to support our customers with robotics solutions made in the United States. Our leading technology of web-enabled, collaborative and safe robots will contribute to job security and quality of work.”

Products manufactured at the new facility will expand in phases. The goal is that most ABB robots and controllers, delivered in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, will be manufactured in Auburn Hills to streamline the delivery process and reduce lead times for customers.

BOTTOM LINE: The number of robots produced and being deployed is growing rapidly, particularly as their cost is lowered and their functionality is enhanced. ABB recently launched their new two-armed collaborative model YuMi, and also acquired gomTec, a startup with a one-armed collaborative robot. As these new lower-cost robots hit stride and become accepted in industrial factories and shops, the number of units sold will grow exponentially, hence having a manufacturing facility in one of the principle marketplaces (the US) makes good sense.



tags: , , , ,


Frank Tobe is the owner and publisher of The Robot Report, and is also a panel member for Robohub's Robotics by Invitation series.
Frank Tobe is the owner and publisher of The Robot Report, and is also a panel member for Robohub's Robotics by Invitation series.





Related posts :



Robot Talk Episode 64 – Rav Chunilal

In the latest episode of the Robot Talk podcast, Claire chatted to Rav Chunilal from Sellafield all about robotics and AI for nuclear decommissioning.
31 December 2023, by

AI holidays 2023

Thanks to those that sent and suggested AI and robotics-themed holiday videos, images, and stories. Here’s a sample to get you into the spirit this season....
31 December 2023, by and

Faced with dwindling bee colonies, scientists are arming queens with robots and smart hives

By Farshad Arvin, Martin Stefanec, and Tomas Krajnik Be it the news or the dwindling number of creatures hitting your windscreens, it will not have evaded you that the insect world in bad shape. ...
31 December 2023, by

Robot Talk Episode 63 – Ayse Kucukyilmaz

In the latest episode of the Robot Talk podcast, Claire chatted to Ayse Kucukyilmaz from the University of Nottingham about collaboration, conflict and failure in human-robot interactions.
31 December 2023, by

Interview with Dautzenberg Roman: #IROS2023 Best Paper Award on Mobile Manipulation sponsored by OMRON Sinic X Corp.

The award-winning author describe their work on an aerial robot which can exert large forces onto walls.
19 November 2023, by

Robot Talk Episode 62 – Jorvon Moss

In the latest episode of the Robot Talk podcast, Claire chatted to Jorvon (Odd-Jayy) Moss from Digikey about making robots at home, and robot design and aesthetics.
17 November 2023, by





©2024 - Association for the Understanding of Artificial Intelligence


 












©2021 - ROBOTS Association