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Industrial Robot Resources

This is my list of resources for learning about industrial robotics.  It includes the resources I know about; while I think it’s pretty broad, I am sure it is not comprehensive.

I will keep this page up to date; when I come across a new and interesting robot resource I will add it here.

General Resources

  • Wikipedia has a lot of good information, starting at the industrial robot page.
  • The Robotics Industry Association (RIA) website has a lot of resources.
  • Control.com is always worth checking, especially using its search or Google (use site:control.com in your search string). .
  • Some places you might not think about, but are worth checking include LinkedIn groups and youtube.
  • Most important of all: be good at advanced Google searches.  I’ve found Google to be better than Bing for technical searches.

Industrial Robot Companies

Since the RIA directory doesn’t separate out the robot vendors from other suppliers, here is my list of companies that make traditional industrial robot arms:

Kinematic Controllers

There are a number of PACs and motion controllers that now support entering kinematic information and using inverse kinemtics. I haven’t research this topic extensively, so I can’t comment on the level of support, and I have probably missed some controllers.

I also doubt that the controllers are truly equivalent to traditional robot controllers, especially when it comes to non-kinematic features. However, they may be a better fit for your application.

Collaborative Robots

Collaborative robots are robots that are meant to be used in the same space as people, and have special safety precautions.

Open Source and Proprietary Robot Frameworks
Most robot frameworks seem oriented towards autonomous robots, not the traditional industrial robot arm. I’m just listing a few below; for more frameworks, the Wikipedia link below is a good start.

Semi-Professional Robots

These are robot arms that, at a glance, appear to be a step up from hobby robot arms, but aren’t comparable to traditional industrial robots (at least, not yet).

Trade Magazines

Trade magazines can be a useful source of information, especially for keeping up with the latest products and industry hype.  Make sure to check the author’s bio; many trade magazine articles are written by vendor employees.  These articles often do have useful information, but you need take the author’s bias into account.  Here are some trade magazines I’ve read: