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  • The Uniwelco Cell 4
    Schweissen & Schneiden 2023 Press release

    Revolutionizing the Metal Industry: Uniwelco ApS's Pioneering Collaborative Robot Systems

    Published on 21/11/23
Nom de l'entreprise
AMADA Schweiz
Submitted by benoit.cantin on Tue 21/11/2023 - 22:35
  • In the rapidly evolving world of metal production, Uniwelco ApS sstands out as a beacon of innovation. Their signature product, collaborative robot systems or "cobots", promises to redefine traditional metalworking practices. These state-of-the-art systems aim to work harmoniously alongside humans, marking a significant step towards addressing the challenges that the metal industry faces today. Our recent conversation with Lars Jakobsen, a representative of Uniwelco ApS, offers a deep dive into the world of cobots and their transformative potential.

  • The Declining Interest in Craftsmanship

    One pressing issue, especially in Northern Europe, is the declining interest in craftsmanship. The dearth of young individuals wanting to join the metalworking profession is alarming. A notable part of the problem is adapting to new generational needs. Jakobsen pointed out that companies might need flexibility in their approach, like adjusting working hours to resonate with younger workers' lifestyles or providing intellectually stimulating tasks.

  • Evolving Production Materials and Methods

    Years ago, metal was the primary material in production. But now, there's a surge in the use of plastics, 3D printing, and other materials that are more environmentally friendly. European metal industries must innovate to stay competitive, especially against regions where labor is cheaper. As Jakobsen pointed out, these regions might not necessarily work smarter, but they employ more people.

  • Uniwelco's Pioneering Role

    Uniwelco's mission revolves around addressing the shortage of skilled workers. Their solution? Intelligent collaborative robot systems or "cobots." These robots are designed to work seamlessly alongside humans, whether in welding, cleaning, or handling tasks. However, implementing such advanced systems isn't without its challenges.

  • Overcoming Resistance to Cobots

    Three primary challenges emerge when introducing cobots. Firstly, veteran workers often view these robots as competitors rather than aids. The initial apprehension could be due to the robot's efficiency or perceived complexity. Rather than seeing the cobot as an assurance for prolonged employment, some see it as a replacement.

    Secondly, some owners, particularly those from older generations familiar with every workshop process, resist change. They may initially invest in a cobot system but revert to traditional methods after encountering initial setbacks.

    Lastly, the regulatory environment isn't always conducive. Many European companies, especially in Germany, adhere to specific standards that haven't been updated for new robotic systems. Misunderstandings around robot safety can halt or delay implementation.

    Despite these hurdles, Uniwelco believes in the transformative power of cobots, especially for smaller workshops aiming to optimize productivity despite a limited workforce.

  • Cultural Shift and the Way Forward

    The successful integration of cobots requires a holistic cultural shift. From workers to owners and regulators, a change in mindset is essential. But when all factors align — an open-minded workforce, supportive ownership, and a conducive safety environment — the potential is limitless. Jakobsen emphasized this, noting that Uniwelco has seen many successes, primarily in Europe.

  • Conclusion

    The conversation with Lars Jakobsen shed light on the multifaceted challenges the metal industry faces today. But with companies like Uniwelco leading the charge with innovative solutions, there's hope for a brighter, more efficient future. With a €1,000,000,000 funding secured for further development, Uniwelco is poised to redefine the future of the metalworking industry.