Applications for Robots 130

This class covers the most common applications of industrial robots.

Class Details

Class Name:
Applications for Robots 130
Number of Lessons:
Additional Language:

Class Outline

  • Objectives
  • Why Use Industrial Robots?
  • The Pros and Cons of Using Robots
  • Robot Capabilities
  • Spot Welding
  • Arc Welding
  • Material Handling
  • Machine Tending
  • Spraying
  • Assembly
  • Fabrication and Processing
  • Inspection
  • Summary


  • Describe the reasons manufacturers use robots.
  • Describe the advantages and disadvantages of using robots.
  • Describe the basic capabilities of robots.
  • Describe spot welding robots.
  • Describe arc welding robots.
  • Describe material handling robots.
  • Describe machine tending robots.
  • Describe spraying robots.
  • Describe assembly robots.
  • Describe fabrication and processing robots.
  • Describe inspection robots.

Job Roles



Vocabulary Term Definition
arc The area in which electricity jumps from the electrode to the workpiece. The heat generated by the arc melts the base metals.
arc welding A welding process that uses the heat generated from electricity to melt filler metal and base metals to form an airtight weld. Robots are ideal for arc welding because it demands a high level of skill that is difficult to find in human workers.
articulated robot A type of robotic arm that closely resembles a human arm. The arm of an articulated robot has revolute joints and the number of joints can vary.
assembly The process of fitting components together into a larger or completed part. Examples of assembly include inserting components into printed wiring boards and assembling small electric motors.
ceramics Inorganic materials that are hardened at high temperatures.
die A worktool in manufacturing that is used to shape or form materials like metal or plastic.
die casting A process in which liquid metal is injected into a mold. Die casting is one of the earliest applications for industrial robots.
dispensing The process of giving out or distributing objects in a container, or applying substances through pressurized force.
dry coating A fast-drying coating that uses little, if any, water. Dry coating usually takes the form of a powder.
electrode A device that conducts electricity.
end-effector The end component of a robotic arm that is shaped like a hand or like a specialized tool.
fabrication The process of creating or building parts from raw materials.
gripper A hand-shaped end-effector designed for seizing and holding.
high velocity oxygen fuel HVOF. A combination of fuel and oxygen that is heated with a torch and applied as a powder coating through a highly pressurized nozzle.
industrial robot A programmable mechanical device that is used in place of a person to perform dangerous or repetitive tasks with a high degree of accuracy.
injection molding A process in which molten plastic is injected into a mold at high pressures. Robots are used for unloading injection molding machines.
inspection The process of observing and comparing parts to identify and correct any defects. Inspection robots are used many areas, including electronics manufacturing, aerospace and automotive automation, food quality inspection, and print quality inspection.
machine loading and unloading The process of loading and unloading raw materials into machinery for processing. Also known as machine tending.
machine tending The process of loading and unloading raw materials into machinery for processing. Also known as machine loading and unloading.
magnetic gripper A type of end-effector that uses electromagnets or permanent magnets to pick up metallic objects.
material handling The process of loading, unloading, placing, or manipulating material. Types of material handling include machine tending, part transfer, packaging, and palletizing.
nozzle The spout at the end of a pipe or tube through which substances are ejected at high velocity.
packaging The process of assembling containers and components for shipping and storage. Packaging robots can work at extremely high speeds.
palletizing The process of placing and securing containers or objects on pallets. Palletizing robots are especially useful for moving objects that would be too difficult or too heavy for humans to move.
payload The maximum load that a robot can manipulate.
pick and place The process of picking up an object or part in one location and placing it in another location. Pick and place robots are popular in production lines.
plasma jet A device that delivers a highly pressurized stream of hot plasma.
plasma spraying A type of thermal spraying in which material is applied to a surface with a plasma torch. Plasma-sprayed coatings are highly resistant to wear and corrosion.
plastic A material consisting of very large molecules characterized by light weight, high corrosion resistance, high strength-to-weight ratios, and low melting points. Most plastics are easily shaped or formed.
plastics processing A process in which plastic is molded, formed, or extruded. Plastics processing is a growing area of robot applications.
press work Manufacturing applications that include stamping, forming, and trimming.
processing The procedures performed and actions taken before a part is ready for distribution.
SCARA robot Selective Compliance Arm for Robotic Assembly. A type of cylindrical robot that has 4 axes of movement: X, Y, Z, and Theta Z.
sensor A device that detects the presence or absence of an object, or certain properties of that object, and provides feedback. Robots use sensors to interact with their environment.
spot welding A type of welding in which parts such as sheet metal are squeezed together between two electrodes and subjected to a large amount of electric current to form a joint. Spot welding is used primarily by the automotive industry to weld automobile bodies.
spraying The process of applying paint, stain, coating, or plastic powder to an object by manipulating a spray gun. Robots are used to spray coatings onto parts such as car panels, furniture, and home appliances.
stamping A metalworking process that bends, imprints, or punches holes into thin sheets of metal. Robots can be used to load and unload stamping machines.
thermal spraying A process in which heated substances are applied to a surface to protect it from wear, heat, and corrosion.
tolerance An acceptable deviation from a desired dimension that still meets specifications.
toploader A robot that is rail-mounted overhead. Toploader robots have a fuller range of movement and conserve floor space.
tungsten A high melting point metal that is immune to oxidation or corrosion by acids.
vacuum gripper A type of end-effector that uses suction cups for gripping flat objects.
welding A joining process that permanently bonds together two separate components with heat, pressure, or a combination of those elements to make one new part. Welding is the most common application for industrial robots.
welding gun A large end-effector used by robots for spot welding. Spot welding guns are usually pneumatic.
workpiece A part or component being processed or worked on by a robot.