A machine as a colleague or rather as a competitor? This question is difficult to answer conclusively. Robots can make the working world of employees easier and do not necessarily have to promote unemployment. The fact is, however, that the field of activity of many professionals will change dramatically in the coming years.
Inadequately prepared for technological change
As early as 2025, half of all working hours will be performed by machines. A study by the World Economic Forum already pointed this out in 2018. The advantages are obvious. Heavy and dangerous work will disappear more and more from everyday working life. This protects the health of employees and at the same time increases the efficiency of the company. The study shows considerable consequences for the world of work. Job requirements will change significantly, which will place high demands on training. Poorly qualified employees could otherwise lose out.
Nevertheless, robots must not be seen as competition or even social cruelty. The scientific community sees the use of technology as positive overall. Although jobs are being lost in industry, more new ones are being created. It will be crucial that employees are empowered to keep pace with technological development. Many companies are prepared to do this, as 73 percent of those surveyed plan to qualify and train their employees.
The colleague with the strong arm
One area of industrial robots are the so-called cobots, which interact hand in hand with a worker. For example, they use a robotic arm, some of which have a very high load-bearing capacity. In this way, they relieve the worker enormously. In addition, they are highly manoeuvrable and have a long reach. At the same time, the robots are multi-talented and can be easily programmed. This makes them very flexible to use in the company. The collaborative industrial robots are the perfect solution to enable safe interaction between man and machine. Equipped with fine sensor technology, the robot detects a collision, stops work immediately and avoids accidents at work.
It is not only the daily work routine in the factory that is changing dramatically. The increased use of robots also offers young start-ups good opportunities. The fields of activity are by no means limited to the manufacturing and logistics sectors. Fields of application can be found everywhere where humans reach their limits. Areas of application include activities where heavy objects have to be lifted or where particularly precise work is required. With an appropriate design, the robots can be used in places that are difficult or impossible for humans to access.
When machines save lives
A good example is the Gimball, a drone that can be used for rescue work. It reaches places that are inaccessible to other emergency equipment and people. Emergency personnel in the vicinity can continue their work safely. The need for robots is huge. In the future, they should make the work of bomb disposal experts safer and take over dangerous operations after chemical accidents. They could be used to rescue victims after an earthquake or save flood victims.
The aim of the research is to enable rescue workers to communicate naturally with the technical helpers. In situations where every second counts, fast verbal communication is a decisive advantage. There are many fields of activity here for young start-ups that will make tomorrow’s lives a little safer.
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