Robotics industry reports record sales for 2016
The Robotic Industries Association (RIA) announced the North American robotics market broke all-time records for orders and shipments in 2016. During the year, 34,606 robots valued at approximately $1.9 billion were ordered in North America, representing growth of 10% in units over 2015. The automotive industry experienced another strong year with orders growing 17%. Units shipped to North American customers also grew by 10%, with 30,875 robots valued at $1.8 billion shipped in 2016. Shipments into the automotive market grew 25% relative to 2015.
The fourth quarter of 2016 alone saw North American orders of 10,621 robots valued at $561 million, a growth rate of 18% in units ordered and 21% in revenue over the fourth quarter of 2015. Q4 shipments grew 33% on a unit basis with shipments of 8,825 robots valued at $494 million.
"Automation played a vital role in spurring economic growth in North American manufacturing and services industries in 2016," said Jeff Burnstein, President of A3. "We anticipate accelerated growth based on smarter, more connected and more collaborative robots in the coming years."
Orders for robots spiked 61% in assembly applications and increased 24% in spot welding. The food and consumer goods industry increased orders for robots by 32% in 2016. Robots in these industries can be used in a variety of functions, including improving food safety, performing repetitive primary packaging tasks such as bin picking, tray loading and bottle handling, and assisting with secondary packaging tasks.
Robotic Industries Association (RIA)
– Edited from an RIA press release by CFE Media. RIA is a not-for-profit trade association dedicated to improving the regional, national and global competitiveness of the North American manufacturing and service sectors through robotics and related automation. The RIA is a part of the Association for Advancing Automation (A3). A3 is a CFE Media content partner. See more Control Engineering robotics stories.