Robotic muscles could transform manufacturing processes

Robotic muscles could transform manufacturing processes

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The manufacturing sector is undergoing continuous transformation on many levels, from increased production efficiency to carbon footprint reduction. A new method of holding items in place has been developed by a team of researchers working at Saarland University and the Center for Mechatronics and Automation Technology in Saarbrücken (ZeMA). The result is a system of robotic muscles capable of holding things in order to allow for the application of other processes. Particularly useful in assembly-line manufacturing, the new vacuum grippers are powered by electricity rather than the traditional systems of compressed air. This makes for a potential transformation of many manufacturing processes. Compressed air is extremely loud and powered by heavy machinery. Electrically powered robot grippers, on the other hand, are much smaller, lighter and quieter. Working environments may not only be made safer, they may shrink as the space required to complete tasks becomes smaller.

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