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7 December, 2022

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ABB opens $150m robotics ‘mega-factory’ in China

05 December, 2022

ABB has opened a fully automated and flexible robotics factory in Shanghai, China, representing an investment of $150m. The 67,000m2 production and research facility will use the company’s digital and automation technologies to manufacture next-generation robots.


Chinese automation giant pushes into Europe

21 November, 2022

The Chinese automation and drives manufacturer Inovance is making a big push into the European market, spearheaded by its first public outing at the recent SPS show in Germany. Although its name may not be well-known outside China, the company already claims to be the world’s fifth-largest servodrive manufacturer and its eighth-largest LV AC drives supplier.


Siemens plans €3bn spin-off of large motors and drives

17 November, 2022

Siemens is planning to combine several businesses in its motors and drives portfolio to create an integrated motors and large drives supplier with joint revenues of around €3bn and around 14,000 employees. The business will target a global electrification and power conversion market that Siemens estimates is worth more than €20bn.


Amazon robot can identify ‘tens of millions’ of products

11 November, 2022

Amazon has announced a robotic system that can identify, select and handle around 65% of the more than 100 million items in its inventory. The robot, called Sparrow, uses a combination of computer vision and AI (artificial intelligence) to identify tens of millions of products of differing shapes and sizes, although it still has problems with items that have loose or complex packaging.


Emerson exits climate tech in $14bn deal to focus on automation

03 November, 2022

Emerson is selling a majority stake in its Climate Technologies business to the private equity firm Blackstone in a transaction that values the business at $14bn. Emerson plans to become a “pure play” global automation company serving a variety of markets. It claims that, together with AspenTech – the industrial software developer in which it took a 55% stake for $6bn earlier this year – it has the industry’s most comprehensive portfolio of advanced automation technologies and software.


Taiwan’s Yageo buys Telemecanique Sensors for €723m

02 November, 2022

The Taiwanese electronic component and service provider Yageo Corporation is buying Schneider Electric’s Telemecanique Sensors business in an all-cash deal that values the business at €723m ($729m). Schneider will grant Yageo a license to use the Telemecanique Sensors name, and Yageo will acquire the relevant patents.


Siemens’ Malaysian acquisition spawns electrical design SaaS

31 October, 2022

Following its recent acquisition of a Malaysian software developer, Siemens has launched a cloud-based electrical design package that, it says, will allow designers and engineers to create electrical schematics easier and faster, using any device, for a low monthly cost. The Capital Electra X product is being offered on a SaaS (software-as-a-service) basis and is aimed at SMEs (small to medium sized businesses).


Automation platform will generate new business for OEMs

20 October, 2022

Lenze has announced an open automation platform that, it says, will help machine-builders to develop new business models and offer new digital services, without needing to be IT experts. The German automation supplier says that the platform, called Nupano, will let machine-builders take advantage of the opportunities arising from the convergence of operational technology (OT) at the machine control level with IT, to tap into new sources of revenue.


Industrial robot sales hit new high in 2021 – but UK sales fall

17 October, 2022

The number of industrial robots installed around the world hit last year an all-time high of 517,385, representing a 31% year-on-year expansion. The number was 22% higher than the pre-pandemic record of 422,000 reached in 2018, and took the total number of operational robots around the globe to a new record of around 3.5 million.


Mars makes plans for cloud-based ‘factories of the future’

05 October, 2022

Mars, the global manufacturer of confectionery, food, and pet care products, which employs more than 140,000 people in more than 80 countries, has announced plans for a new cloud-based platform for its manufacturing, data-handling and artificial intelligence (AI) operations that will lay the foundation for its vision of the “factory of the future”.


Rockwell buys Danish modular switchboard specialist, Cubic

03 October, 2022

Rockwell Automation is buying Cubic, a Danish company that produces modular systems for constructing electrical panels. Rockwell says that combining Cubic’s flexible systems with its own intelligent devices and expertise will achieve faster times to market for intelligent motor controls, and help to generate smart data for users. The terms of the transaction have not been revealed.


ABB takes stake in Dutch machine monitoring specialist

26 September, 2022

ABB is taking a 10% stake in Samotics, a Dutch specialist in analysing the health of rotating machines, and has entered a long-term strategic partnership with the company to provide enhanced condition-monitoring services. They aim to reach the next level of condition-monitoring by co-developing advanced digital services focused on energy efficiency and operational resilience. As a first step, ABB will integrate Samotics’ plug-and-play monitoring technologies into its portfolio by the end of 2022 as part of its services for rotating equipment.


ABB rebrands AMR line-up following its purchase of Asti

23 September, 2022

Following its acquisition last year of the Spanish autonomous mobile robot (AMR) manufacturer Asti Mobile Robotics, ABB Robotics is rebranding its AMR portfolio under the Flexley name. The first models to be released, Flexley Tug and Flexley Mover, cover applications such as towing, trolley transportation for loads of up to 2,000kg, as well as lifting and transporting racks, containers, and pallets up to 1,500kg.


SPS expects 1,100 exhibitors after three-year absence

16 September, 2022

The SPS (Smart Production Solutions) automation megashow will return to its Nuremberg venue in Germany in November for its first physical show since 2019, with the organisers hoping to attract around 1,100 exhibitors, compared to the 1,585 in 2019. Last year, the exhibition had to be cancelled at the last minute because of soaring Covid rates in Bavaria.


Smart linear conveyor system sales will hit $1bn by 2026

14 September, 2022

The global market for “smart” production line conveyor systems – both linear and planar – is outpacing the general manufacturing and machinery market and will expand from $300m in 2021 to almost $1bn by 2026, according to new research by Interact Analysis. Sales grew by 27% in 2021 and are likely to expand by a further 36% this year, it reports. Over the period 2021-206, it expects the linear market to achieve a CAGR of 26.5%.


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