ABB has entered into a strategic partnership with US-based startup Scalable Robotics to enhance its portfolio of user-friendly robotic welding systems. Through 3D vision and embedded process understanding, Scalable Robotics technology allows customers to program welding robots without the need for coding. ABB Technology Ventures will be the lead investor in Scalable’s seed funding investment round. ABB did not disclose the level or the terms of the investment.
Scalable’s code-free, CAD free, point and click programming interface enhances ABB’s existing portfolio of no-code programming applications that help to remove the need for specialized programming knowledge. The Scalable platform allows a welder to teach a task to the robot by pointing to where the weld should be applied, with the robot learning the path on its own. The solution features a 3-D camera in a protective box attached to the robot end-of-arm tooling and uses a touchscreen interface to guide the welder through the scan, teach, validate and tuning steps. The platform automatically generates a weld path that is validated within ABB’s RobotStudio simulation and programming software. The operator makes any final modifications before the robot auto-tunes the program and sends it to the robot controller so the weld can be performed.
Harry Forbes, ARC Advisory Group, commented, “The ground floor investment by ABB illustrates the end user need for industrial software that hides internal complexity through a simple yet well thought-out interface and work process. That attribute is critical for industrial software and for IT product that wish to serve industrial applications.”