Producing ‘New Collar’ Jobs, NAM President

As manufacturing remains to change in profound means, so also get the job done and also the abilities required. Someplace between the hands-on typical blue collar jobs of the past and the white collar managerial functions is an emerging team of highly-skilled specialists that are redefining the American labor force.

“It’s not concerning white collar or blue collar … It’s regarding ‘brand-new collar’ tasks– tasks that are state-of-the-art, 21st-century, rewarding, well-paying tasks– also those that do not call for a four-year level,” stated Jay Timmons, President as well as CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, in his current “State of Manufacturing” address.

Innovation is changing the means the sector looks, as well as while it might appear on the surface that jobs are disappearing, they’re changing to roles that need new sets of skills, Timmons states. A research by Deloitte on the impact of automation on jobs in the U.K. discovered that while automation as well as AI technologies removed 800,000 low-skilled jobs during greater than a decade, it also produced 3.5 million brand-new ones that paid an average of almost $13,000 more per year. And in the “automation alley” in Oakland County, Timmons noted greater than 19,000 manufacturing jobs were developed because the Great Recession.

While the public frequently sights automation as a danger to standard manufacturing jobs, it is precisely just what will expand the workforce, Timmons claims. He thinks the recent tax reform expense, which allows makers to quickly write off the full expense of brand-new devices, will certainly stimulate makers to invest a lot more in brand-new devices, automation and clever technologies.

“Automation and also task development are not at odds … American workers and also American modern technology are not enemies. Advancement as well as automation are increasing what American employees can do, making the impossible feasible and also transforming this sector for the better,” Timmons claimed.

Automation is creating brand-new jobs in several locations of manufacturing, not just in service as well as administration of robotics but likewise by making it possible for human beings to become more effective and also help the business grow. While business such as Tesla are moving in the direction of full automation, many vehicle producers claim human employees will certainly still be a vital part of the procedure. Honda, which recently won the North American Car of the Year award at the Detroit vehicle show for the Accord, noted that human beings are an important part. A short article in Bloomberg noted that Toyota as well as Mercedes Benz also rely much more on people compared to on robotics o mount the significantly complex options that consumers demand. Several manufacturers utilize robots for tedious and also recurring jobs such as welding as well as paint after that count on human beings to set up motors, interior trim as well as elements.

“We can not locate anything to fill in the human touch and of human detects like view, hearing as well as odor,” Tom Shoupe, primary operating officer of Honda’s Ohio manufacturing unit, informed Bloomberg.

The technology supporting robotics is making great strides. Major developments are in software, vision guidance
and lighter weight, but stronger structures.

The software to define the motions of the robot is more user friendly. Also, most users are more comfortable with using software.
Vision technology also,has made great strides to become user friendly and more vision guided robots are on the market.
Many robot parts, such as the arms are made from light weight, reinforced materials, making them lighter and stronger
The robot has fewer moving parts than a similar electric/mechanical deviice. The MTBF of robots over 60,000 hours.

For material handling such as palletizing or loading product into trays and cases, robots can be the ideal solution.
To do the reverse, unloading pallets or containers, robots can handle odd shaped or fragile products better than
mechanically actuated fixtures.

Material handling robots come in three formats, 4 axis SCARA, 6 axis articulated arm and 3 axis Gantry.

The 4 axis SCARA robot is ideal for pick and place motion with short vertical travel. For some time vision
guided SCARAs have picked select items out of large groups and placed them into programmed container
locations. ( Picking chocolate pieces off a conveyor and placing them into predetermined tray locations has been an example
for a number of years. Now they do it faster and at a lower cost.)
The capacity of SCARAs is maximum around 10kg. Most models are less than 5 kg. However, they are fast and,
depending on the part weight, can pick-and-place 20 to 30 pieces per minute. SCARAs also have great placement precission.

The 6 axis articulated arm type robots come in 5kg to over 500 kg capacity models. Their reach can be over
2 meters. Depending on the load and path of motion, they can handle up to 35 – 40 products an hour.
Because of the higher load capacity, the articulated arm robot can move more than one product at once.
Grippers, (end effectors) can grab a group of sorted items and lift them into a container or position at once.

Gantry robots have a gripper that moves on X-Y tracks with limited motion in the Z direction.They are fast,
precise in location repeatability and capacity up to 50 kg. The limitation is that they are intended for a specific
layout of max X and Y direction.

The main negative point with robots is SAFETY. The robot arm will move through its programmed path regardless
of any obstruction. Fencing and safety sensors are required to meet OSHA and other safety standards.
The safety standard ANSI/RIA R15.06 – 1999 Section IV Chapter 4, is the primary guideline for the user of robots.