The modern definition of a robot can be an electro-mechanical device which follows a set of instructions to carry out certain jobs, but literally robot means a ‘slave’. Robots find wide application in industries and thus are called there as industrial robots and also in sci-fi movies as humanoids. This and coming articles will provide an introduction to the Robotics.
Robotics and Automation
When we think about robotics first thing that come to our mind is automation. Robots are known to perform tasks automatically without much human intervention, except for initial programming and instruction set being provided to them. The first machine, what I have seen in my childhood when we were on a visit to a milk processing plant, most close, to be called as a robot was a milk packaging machine. There was roll of packaging material running through the machine, each time half a liter of milk falls into the roll and then a mechanism in the machine seals and cuts the packet.
This machine can be a simple example of a very basic robot. It performs the specified sequence of operations repeatedly with the same accuracy. It was programmed and provided with the required material and then started.
Advancements in Robotics
The more advanced versions of robots seen now-a-days can perform operations adaptively, that is, changing the dimensions and other settings according to the requirements. One such advanced example of an adaptive robot is a stitching machine which can read the different dimensions of dress size on the personal card of a person and then cut the desired dress material and stitch it to the size fitting to the person.
From a broad view, robotics is actually the continuous endeavor of robotics engineers to make machines capable of performing tasks as delicately as human can do and also the complicated, tough and repeated tasks which humans would prefer not to do. The advancements in the field robotics are made possible by use of microprocessors and microcontrollers with the intelligent combination of them with servo motors, sensors and actuators.
Robotics: Future Scope
Now the scope of robotics has widened and the robots which can only work on preprogrammed instructions irrespective of the environments they are working in are soon going to become outdated. The robots which are being developed these days can sense their surroundings and behave according to what they sense and make judgments on their own to how to respond. Far are not the days when robots would even sense and respond to feelings and could even express how they feel.
This post is part of the series: Robotics
- Robotics: Introduction
- Robotics: Scope and Limitations of Robots
- Robotics: Construction of a Robot
- Robotics: Structure of Industrial Robots or Manipulators: Types of Base Bodies – I
- Robotics: Structure of Industrial Robots or Manipulators: Types of Base Bodies – II