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Robotics sales on record course: industry association


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September 8, 2015 by Canadian Plastics

With worldwide sales up more than 25% over the past 12 months, the global robotics industry is “going through the roof”, according to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR).

At a robotics conference in Shanghai in July 2015, IFR Robot Supplier Committee Chairman, Dr. Andreas Bauer presented the IFR’s preliminary sales results for 2014: over 225,000 industrial robots sold that year – a record growth of 27% compared to the previous year, and almost twice as high as originally forecast.

IFR’s yearly growth forecast for the coming years is also for double-digit growth. “According to the global umbrella organization for robotics, about 900,000 more industrial robots will be installed from 2015 to 2017,” Bauer said.

The IFR predicts uninterrupted growth in many sales sectors – chief among them the automotive industry, driven by such factors as expanded capacities, new model series, and the modernization of existing automation systems.

As in the previous year, robotics is growing primarily in Asia, where the highest sales volume of all time has been recorded: 140,000 units sold. “In China alone, more than 56,000 robots were sold,” Bauer said. “Compare this to 2008, when only 60,000 robots were sold worldwide.”

Besides classic applications, IFR predicts that new trend topics will primarily be driving robotics forward: human-robot collaboration (HRC), mobile robot systems, two-arm robots, robots in the low payload range, and also systems that are very easy to operate and install.