Robotics is the combination of science, engineering, and technology that makes robots, which are machines that can do what humans do. The goal of robotics is to make intelligent machines that can help people in many different ways.

A robot can look like a person, or it can be an application like robotic process automation (RPA), which mimics how people use software to do repetitive, rules-based tasks.

What is a robot?

A robot is the result of the field of robotics. Robots were first made to do boring jobs, like building cars on an assembly line. Now, they do a lot more than that, like fighting fires, cleaning homes, and helping doctors with very complicated surgeries.

Each robot has a different level of autonomy, ranging from human-controlled bots that do tasks that a human has full control over to fully autonomous bots that do tasks without any outside influences.

The five main areas of robotics

Human Robot Interface

The Human Robot Interface (HRI) is the way for the user and the robot to talk to each other. In particular, it is the way that a human operator can give pre-programmed commands to a robot so that it can carry them out. The operator must be able to communicate well with the robot for the task to be done accurately and quickly. 

A simple Human Robot Interface is something like a game controller (HRI). The player gives the system a set of commands, which are then carried out in the game. HRI also includes an industrial touchscreen computer on a piece of machinery or in a central control room. The operator can tell the conveyor or another machine on the factory floor what to do.

Locomotion

Locomotion means the ability of robots to move around in their environment in order to do a job. There are a lot of different ways to make a robot move. 

Some robots that are used in assembling are designed based on the human body, and they move like people.

Drones that can fly use propellers and other ways to move forward.

Rovers that are sent to Mars and other planets need wheels to move around. 

In short, how an engineer designs a robot’s movement system often depends on how it will be used.

Manipulators and Effectors

Manipulators and effectors are parts of the robot that let it pick up and move things or work with things that are not part of the system. For a given task, robots that look like people will use limbs and fingers that work like human hands. Some manipulators and effectors used in industrial settings are pincers, claws, or pushers. Each of these tools has its own way of moving heavy pieces of equipment or materials.

Programming

Programming is basically the language that an operator uses to talk to a robot. A thousand different programming languages can be used to program one robot. Modern programming makes it possible for robots to learn and adapt to changes in their environment.

In general, the user gives the robot commands in real time or pre-programmed to do a series of tasks on its own, one after the other. 

Sensor 

Robots use sensors to find out what’s going on. This tells the robot how much space it takes up, where it needs to go, and if there are any obstacles in its way. Sensors also gather data to help the robot decide what to do when it comes across an object. The right sensor for each robot’s job makes the right decision.

Different kinds of robots

Mechanical bots come in many different shapes and sizes so that they can do their jobs well. All robots have different looks, functions, and levels of independence. From the 0.2-millimeter-long “RoboBee” to the 200-meter-long “Vindskip,” robots are getting better at doing things that people can’t. There are five main kinds of robots:

Pre-Programmed Robots 

A mechanical arm on an assembly line is a pre-programmed robot. The arm’s job is to do things like weld a door, put a part in the engine, etc. faster and better than a person could.

Humanoids

Humanoid robots look like or act like people. They run, jump, and carry things. Sometimes, they even have human faces and attitudes. 

Example: Sophia from Hanson Robotics, The Boston Dynamics Atlas

Autonomous Robots

Autonomous robots don’t have a person in charge of them. In a unique way, they use sensors to gather information about their surroundings and then use decision-making tools (usually a computer) to choose the best next step based on their data and purpose. 

Examples of autonomous robots

For bots that clean (for example, Roomba), Bots that cut the grass Hospitality Bots, Autonomous Drones, Botsn. Medical Assistant

Teleoperated Robots

A wireless network can control teleoperated robots. These robots can work in places with bad weather, terrain, etc. 

example

Robots can fix broken pipes in submarines. Drones are used to detect landmines.

Augmented Robots

Augmenting robots add to or replace the skills of humans. In the field of robotics for human enhancement, robots make people faster and stronger. 

For example, prosthetic limbs and exoskeletons, Robots that disperse bombs and perform surgery

APPLICATIONS OF ROBOTICS

Examples of Robotics in Logistics

Logistics companies use robots in warehouses (for shipping, handling, and quality control) and even on the road to help make the best use of time. This is because we now expect our packages to arrive at lightning speed. Right now, robots are taking your items off of the shelves, moving them across the warehouse floor, and putting them in boxes. In the future, they will deliver your package to your door on their own.

Travel Robotics

Self-driving cars that drive themselves are no longer science fiction. They are a mix of data science and robotics. Automakers like Tesla, Ford, Waymo, Volkswagen, and BMW are all working on the next wave of transportation, which will let us sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

Household Robotics 

It’s no longer science fiction. Robots are everywhere in our homes. They help us with chores, remind us of our plans, and even keep our kids entertained. This Roomba vacuum cleaner is the most well-known example of a home robot. Also, robots have improved to the point where they can now mow grass and clean pools on their own.

Amazon’s upcoming Astro bot is the most obvious example of a robot for the home that uses AI. The robot is basically an Echo Show on wheels. It uses artificial intelligence to move around the house on its own, and a periscope camera gives it eyes and ears when you’re not there. This isn’t completely new, since vacuum robots can move around furniture. 

The company that makes Roomba, iRobot, just said that new models will use machine learning and AI to find and avoid pet poop.

Examples of Robotics in the Manufacturing Sector

The manufacturing industry uses robotics more than any other. These robots and co-bots (robots that work with humans) test and put together things like cars and industrial equipment in an efficient way. According to estimates, there are probably more than three million industrial robots in use right now.

Manufacturing robotics and artificial intelligence, also known as “Industry 4.0,” have the potential to change things even more.

This could be as simple as a robot using an algorithm to find its way around a busy warehouse. However, companies like Vicarious are using AI on turnkey robotics where the task is too complicated for programmed automation.

The Shadow Dexterous Hand is a robot that is flexible enough to pick soft fruit without crushing it. It also learns by watching, which could make it a game-changer in pharma.

The Site Monitoring Robot from Scaled Robotics, on the other hand, can walk around a construction site, scan the project, and analyze data to look for possible quality problems.

Examples of Robotics in Business 

Starship Technologies’ delivery robots are a smart idea for any business that needs to send things within a four-mile radius. The little robot on wheels is equipped with mapping systems, sensors, and artificial intelligence, so it can figure out the best route to take on the fly and avoid dangers in the outside world.

Things are getting better and better in the catering world. Miso Robotics’ Flippy uses 3D and thermal vision to learn from the kitchen it’s in. It can pick up new skills over time, even though it’s named after the simple act of flipping burgers.Moley’s Robotic Kitchen It could also give us a glimpse of the future of food service.

An Example of Robotics in Healthcare

Robots have made a lot of progress in the medical field. These amazing machines are used in almost every part of health care, from surgeries done with the help of robots to physical therapy where bots help people recover from injuries. 

Toyota’s healthcare assistants help people who can’t walk get back on their feet, and “TUG” is a robot that can walk around a hospital on its own and deliver everything from medicines to clean sheets.

Pharmaceutical companies have recently started using robots to help fight COVID-19 faster. These robots are now used to fill and seal COVID-19 testing swabs, and some manufacturers also use them to make PPE and respirators.

Most doctors and nurses are tired and overworked, and in the world of healthcare, being tired can be deadly. Robots don’t get tired, which could make them a good replacement. Also, so-called “Waldo Surgeonscan perform operations with a steady “hand” and great accuracy.

More basic robots in healthcare can free up doctors’ and nurses’ time by doing less skilled work. Moxi, for example, can do everything from handing out personal protective equipment (PPE) to running patient samples, giving doctors more time to care for their patients.

During the coronavirus pandemic, Cobionix made a robot that could give vaccinations without using needles. This robot can do this without any kind of human supervision.

Examples of robotics in farming

As in healthcare, the future of robotics in agriculture could make labor shortages and worker fatigue less of a problem, but there’s another big potential benefit: sustainability.

Iron Ox, for example, uses AI and robots to try to make sure that each plant gets the right amount of sunlight, water, and nutrients to grow as well as it can.

When robots and AI look at each plant, less water is wasted and farms make less trash. The idea is that the AI will keep learning from the data, making future harvests better as well.

The Agrobot E-Series is another example of a robot used in agriculture. It has 24 robotic arms that can pick strawberries and artificial intelligence that can tell how ripe each fruit picked is.

uses of robotics in the aerospace industry.

NASA is trying to improve the artificial intelligence of its Mars rovers by making a robot that can fix satellites on its own. Other companies are also interested in using robotics and AI to improve space exploration.

Airbus’s CIMONFor example, it is like Alexa in space. It is designed to help astronauts with day-to-day tasks and reduce stress through speech recognition. It can also act as an early-warning system to spot problems.

And NASA isn’t the only group making self-driving rovers. With the help of tools on board, iSpace’s rover could help build a Moon Valley colony far from Earth in the near future.

Robotics is used by the military.

For obvious reasons, the military doesn’t like to brag about its achievements as much as other groups that use robotic AI for less controversial purposes. However, the future of AI weapons is very real, and military drones that fly on their own have already been in combat.