The use of robotics in machining entails new regulations on prevention and safety
Robotics is a part of digitization within the mechanized sector that is growing strongly. It is estimated that there are currently more than three million industrial robots in all the factories of the world, as indicated in the World Robotics report 2021 Industria Robots de la International Federation of Robotics (IFR).
The arrival of the robotics in the machining implies new safety regulations for workers
The Nobel Prize in Economics 2006 Edmund S. Phelps emphasizes that "the COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the spread of artificial intelligence" and consequently of robotics and health and safety regulations in the workplace.. Due to this fact, The European Commission has had to modernize the regulations of the 2006 for robots and machinery.
In the new regulation proposal created in 2021, the scope in terms of security and civil liability of artificial intelligence is already included, the internet of things and robotics. In addition to regulation in terms of robotics, This new standard also includes aspects regarding cobots, automatic robots that have intelligence to act with human patterns. In fact, Progress in technology has caused industrial robots to help reduce spending on automation and may have perception qualities, movement and learning.
This collaboration between robots and humans is what derives in the Industry 4.0. Therefore, we can say that risk prevention and safety and health at work, they enter a new evolved phase with respect to the one we had assumed up to now. As stated by the Robotic Industries Association (RIA), it is estimated that for 2025 sales of industrial robots increase tenfold.
What risks in the workplace of the machining behaves the robotics?
We have to go back through the years 50 to find the first regulation or law regarding robotics, created by Isaac Asimov in his book 'Yo Robot', and that are still valid today. They are based on three principles:
- A robot must not harm a human being or, for his passivity, let a human being come to harm.
- A robot must obey orders given to it by a human being., except where these orders are in conflict with the first law.
- A robot must protect its own existence, to the extent that this protection does not conflict with the first or second law.
As we have commented, There are different regulations that deal with safety matters or occupational risks in the field of robotics at work, but these need to be updated. The list begins with those originated between the International Committee of ISO TC 184/SC2 and the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) that collect safety requirements for robot systems. More specifically, in the ISO rule 10218-2 the basic dangers and identified risk situations of these systems are described, and facilitates the requirements to suppress or correctly reduce the danger associated with these industrial robotic systems. Secondly, the ISO/TS 15066:2016 Robots and robotic devices, collects the safety requirements of collaborative robots, to interact directly with a human within a collaborative workspace.
The robotics brings new opportunities for the machining
Although there are new challenges in terms of safety and health at work due to robotics, new opportunities open up. Robots will make it possible to replace workers who perform tasks in unhealthy or dangerous environments, in this way the exposure of these people is avoided. In industries like aerospace, defense or nuclear, but in others, such as logistics, robots can do maintenance and inspection tasks. Secondly, in terms of machining, robots can help carry out the most repetitive and monotonous tasks and transport and, therefore, increase the performance of workers in other tasks.
Since Aspromec we help machining companies in their process of assuming the industry 4.0 in their productions. We offer personalized advice to be able to open up to new markets (both national and international) taking advantage of the latest digitization technologies provided by the sector. Contact us for more information, writing to firstname.lastname@example.org