Robotics

Three industrial robot end of arm tooling trends

Industrial robot end of arm tooling (EOAT) trends include safer grippers and greater connectivity as companies face greater productivity and demand from their customers.
By Robotic Industries Association (RIA) December 23, 2018
Courtesy: Bob Vavra, CFE Media

Industrial robot end of arm tooling (EOAT) is undergoing major changes with robotic technology advances and customers demand greater levels of productivity. Robot EOAT advances are making industrial robots more productive than ever before.

Tracking robot EOAT trends reveals the ways robot manufacturers are striving to meet their customers’ needs and demands.

Customer demands driving robot EOAT changes

Robot users face constant pressure to reduce operating costs while increasing productivity and maintaining strict quality levels. This pressure is passed up the value chain to robot manufacturers who must accommodate their customers.

Today, robot users want EOAT to be faster, lighter, and cheaper to boost their return on investment (ROI) for automation equipment. They also want greater flexibility so robots can perform more tasks and improve the system’s overall performance.

Three robot EOAT trends

Intense demands from robot users are driving changes in robot EOAT. Three of the most consequential trends include:

  • Safer grippers: Users care more about robot safety because of the productivity benefits and responsibility they have to their crew. Now, EOAT is often equipped with sensors or force limitations that prevent it from hurting a human worker.
  • Connected EOAT: a few newer types of EOAT are IoT-connected for superior data collection and optimization as well as communication with other smart components in the production cycle.
  • Soft grippers: The need for softer grippers, particularly in food production and processing, has increased in recent years. Soft grippers are delicate enough to handle food without causing damage. They’re also flexible enough to grasp multiple types of food with the same gripper.

Industrial robot EOAT is rapidly changing along with other types of robot technology to meet the increasingly difficult demands of robot users. Today’s robot EOAT enables higher productivity in a wide range of automated applications.

This article originally appeared on the Robotics Online BlogRobotic Industries Association (RIA) is a part of the Association for Advancing Automation (A3), a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Chris Vavra, production editor, Control Engineering, CFE Media, cvavra@cfemedia.com.


Robotic Industries Association (RIA)