A Chinese breakthrough in robotics innovation
One of China’s leading machinery developers Qinchuan Machine Tool & Tool (Group) recently announced at the 2015 China International Industry Fair in Shanghai that they had successfully developed a robotic gear reducer that can achieve various levels of precision. This is the first time a domestic company has created such a piece of robotic equipment.
A gear reducer is a key part in a robotic system and it functions like a joint that facilitates movement in the human arm. This component accounts for up to two-third of the entire cost of an industrial robot.
“This invention is a result of more than 10 years of research and trials. We hope it will become mass produced soon to meet the increasing demands for robotics,” said Long Xingyuan, president of the board at Qinchuan.
Manufacturing such gear reducers require highly precise machinery and key technologies from overseas markets that cannot be imported into the domestic market nor adapted to domestic robotics due to disparities in design, machinery functions and precision levels.
To overcome these obstacles, Qinchuan decided to start a project to develop its own equipment that can manufacture the gear reducer. At the recently concluded industry fair, the company debuted eight different reducers.
Qinchuan currently has the capacity to produce 700 sets of such reducers, and some of the already-made parts have been installed for trials. The company said that its joint program with a Germany-based company to set up a production line for industrial robotic gear reducers will be completed by the first quarter of next year. Qinchuan will then be able to produce 60,000 sets of such reducers annually.
said Association, believes that China’s robotics market and the sales of industrial robots will continue to grow over the next few years as companies strive to meet the Made in China 2025 plan, which calls for greater use of advanced equipment with higher precision and efficiency as well as lower energy consumption.
Zhu Sendi, a member of the state manufacturing constructive strategy advisory committee, said that competition in this sector will be increasingly fiercer and market players need to put more resources into research to meet the particular demands of clients.
“Innovative products, research-driven results and niche-market oriented investment and development will help the domestic robotics market to grow in healthy and sustainable patterns,” said Zhu.
A Qinchuan employee explains to visitors how the gear reduces works.