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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Japanese Robots Made in China?

The world’s leading manufacturer of industrial robots, Yaskawa Electric, plans to move some robot production overseas to Asia. Speculations have started where in Asia the company will locate the new robot plant. One hot guess is China, where the company already has established a plant for servo motors, which are used in robots and machine tools. Yaskawa currently makes 1,600 to 1,800 units a month at its main plant in Kitakyushu. The Chinese market for industrial robots was about 15,000 units last year, and is expected to grow to 32,000 units in 2014 driven by increased automation and surging labor costs.
Yaskawa Service Robot
Yaskawa has recently demonstrated its ambitions to compete on the emerging service robot market by  developing non-manufacturing applications for their industrial robots. The SmartPal VII is a telepresence robot that can be controlled remotely using Microsoft's Kinect.

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