Browse Definitions :
Definition

collaborative robot (cobot)

A collaborative robot, also known as a cobot, is a robot that is capable of learning multiple tasks so it can assist human beings. In contrast, autonomous robots are hard-coded to repeatedly perform one task, work independently and remain stationary.

Today, advances in mobile technology, machine vision, cognitive computing and touch technology (including collision avoidance) are making it possible for small, lower-power robots to be aware of their surroundings and perform multiple types of tasks safely in close proximity to human workers. A cobot, when working side by side a human, can quickly learn tasks through demonstration and reinforcement learning.

As of this writing, the majority of industrial robots are still autonomous. They are expensive, large and reside behind barriers for safety reasons. Although industrial robots have played an important role in the automotive industry and its suppliers, their high cost, large size, weight and complex programming requirements have limited their use in other vertical industries.  Another barrier to adoption is the cultural fear of robots dominating the workplace and replacing human employees.

Cobots are purposely designed to address this fear. A collaborative robot is not intended to augment the human worker's capabilities, not take the place of a human worker. In many cases, the cobot takes the form of an arm, providing the worker with an extra set of hands.

Today, collaborative robots are currently used in several vertical industries, including manufacturing, supply chain management and healthcare. They generally have lower power requirements than their large, autonomous counterparts, are often mobile and use collision detection to prevent injury to their human colleagues and other cobots.

Popular collaborative robot manufacturers include Universal Robots, KUKA, Rethink Robotics and Franka.

This was last updated in June 2018

Join the conversation

1 comment

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

Some of these co-bots are cute, but only one is ready for the industrial automation environment, Universal Robots. @axisnj
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • Whistleblower Protection Act

    The Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 is a law that protects federal government employees in the United States from ...

  • smart contract

    A smart contract, also known as a cryptocontract, is a computer program that directly controls the transfer of digital currencies...

  • risk map (risk heat map)

    A risk map, also known as a risk heat map, is a data visualization tool for communicating specific risks an organization faces. A...

SearchSecurity

  • challenge-response authentication

    In information security, challenge-response authentication is a type of authentication protocol where one entity presents a ...

  • Secure Shell (SSH)

    SSH, also known as Secure Shell or Secure Socket Shell, is a network protocol that gives users, particularly system ...

  • honeypot (computing)

    A honeypot is a network-attached system set up as a decoy to lure cyberattackers and to detect, deflect or study hacking attempts...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • virtual disaster recovery

    Virtual disaster recovery is a type of DR that typically involves replication and allows a user to fail over to virtualized ...

  • tabletop exercise (TTX)

    A tabletop exercise (TTX) is a disaster preparedness activity that takes participants through the process of dealing with a ...

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a data center.

SearchStorage

  • exbibyte (EiB)

    An exbibyte (EiB) is a unit used to measure data capacity.

  • zebibyte (ZiB)

    A zebibyte (ZiB) is a unit used to measure computing and storage capacity.

  • tiered storage

    Tiered storage is a way to assign different categories of data to various types of storage media with the objective of reducing ...

Close