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Rise in domestic and professional service robots owing to development in artificial intelligence

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The service robot market is set to expand in the next couple of years owing to demand coming from healthcare, agriculture, and logistics sector.

The service robotics market has seen a tremendous growth in the last decade as technology has taken giant strides forward. Service robots assist humans in various industrial sectors such as healthcare, defense, logistics, construction, and field. Robots have helped humans in a wide range of industrial and domestic applications. The demand for service robots is on the rise as they reduce operational costs, human errors, and along with that improve usability. Other factors that have influenced the growth of the service robots market is the increase in R&D activities, dearth of skilled labor, high labor cost, and increase in investment. The market is extensively evaluated in a recent report published by Allied Market Research that offers valuable insight about the service robotics markets such as market share, size and growth. The market in Asia-Pacific region will see a surge in demand for service robotics owing to the advancements made in the field in countries such as Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. The robotics technology has gradually started to get acceptance from the audience worldwide as results have been encouraging. The technology has a huge scope in the future and is tipped to replace humans to perform certain jobs.

Investment in robotics on the rise in Asia-Pacific
On October 11, 2016, the South Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy revealed that the organization plans to boost the local robotics industry and encourage robotic firms by supporting them. The ministry will utilized the service robots in public sector and small factory development to boost the demand. The goal of the organization is to nurture the technology and take it to the next level by making use of the technology in different industrial sectors. The infrastructure required to boost the growth of the service robotics in the region will see an upgrade with various research centers and humanoid robot research institutes in the pipeline. Various component improvement programs will be launched to achieve high level of supply capability.

Around 20 pilot projects are planned for 2017 and 2018 that are associated with utilization of advanced manufacturing robots. The ministry further plans to seek firms that currently run smart factory solutions and have the capacity to adopt manufacturing based processes that rely on robotics. The ultimate aim of the ministry is to introduce service robots to the public sector especially prioritizing on driverless transport, social security, and medical rehabilitation. As many as 80 projects will be active by 2020.

To boost the development of crucial technological components namely, motors, speed reducers, and controllers, the ministry plans to invest 350 billion won in R&D activities. Research centers of specific companies will be specially designated to accelerate the commercial application of advanced robots. Until 2020, 100 billion won will be utilized to develop 20 robots by that time. The humanoid research institutes will become an integral part of colleges and their research facilities.

The ministry has been aggressive with the promotion of service robotics technology. The Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy is playing an important role to boost the service robot technology in the region. The local companies are also pushing for the commercialization of robots. Hyundai Heavy Industries plans to expand its robot business by November 2016. Other firms such as Yujin Robot, SK Telecom and Hanwha Techwin are contributing significantly to the growth of the market in the region.

Underwater robotic cleaning and decontamination service launched
In October 2016, Diakont, a leading company that is involved in refueling services and tooling in the nuclear industry, announced that it will soon perform underwater cleaning using advanced robotic tooling. This process will also include decontamination of refueling cavities when they are flooded. Traditionally, cleaning and decontamination processes were carried out manually, which were time consuming, non-effective, and unreliable. The robotic cleaning technology introduced by Diakont offers maneuverability due to use of thrusters while cleaning locations that are not easily accessible. The robotic tool launched by the company offers safe and efficient performance and also helps to reduce personnel dose exposure and path schedule duration. Jacco Goemans, Director of Nuclear Solutions, Diakont, explained that with the underwater cleaning and decontamination service offerings, the company has potentially launched a game-changing robotic technology. The new robotic cleaning and decontamination service is much more effective than traditional methods used for cleaning and decontamination.

Demand for service robots to grow in the near future
The demand for service robots is expected to accelerate in the next 3–4 years owing to the rise in adoption of the technology in medical surgeries, milking cows, and to move objects around the warehouse. Service robots will soon be part of several domestic applications as well such as mowing the grass, cleaning the house and delivering items to humans from various corners of the house. According to International Federation of Robotics, the service robotics market is projected to grow by $46 billion during the period 2016–2019. The demand for service robots is on the rise as they perform tasks which assist the humans and are time-efficient. The major players that are at the center of development and research are Intuitive Surgical, iRobot Corporation, and Google. The aforementioned companies are based in U.S. Other companies from different regions include, DJI from China and Kuka which is based in Germany.

Domestic and professional service robots will contribute equally to the growth of the service robot market by 2019. As far as professional robots are concerned, the sales of robots for healthcare purposes is higher compared to agriculture and logistics applications. The demand for entertainment robots is on the rise owing to the increase in the disposable income of the population worldwide.

The technology sector is evolving at a fast pace and the advancement made in the field of computers especially with the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is commendable. AI will assist robots to perform tasks on their won without the need for manual instructions. Advanced robots assist in manufacturing processes and are set to further change things in the future. Opportunities in the industry have been created by leading multinational, such as Google, Facebook, and IBM. Investors are turning to service robotics as they offer lucrative opportunities to the investors. Some investors have managed to achieve a return of 200% on their investment by investing in these companies who are pioneering in the field of AI.

Author Bio:
Bhupendra Shirsath, is a senior content writer with Allied Market Research. He has worked intimately with industry specialists from different segments including chemical, automotive and transportation, information technology, life sciences, construction and manufacturing & energy and power. Bhupendra’s article concentrates principally on balancing relevant data but never at the expense of making the content engaging. He believes in giving fair-minded information to guide significant business choices. Any comments should be sent to the author at bhupendra@origius.com

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