Automation revolutionized the industrial world, and its influence has only grown as our technology has advanced and the human need to grow and expand to new heights has continued unabated. Automation has made industry faster, safer and more efficient. It has enabled workers to do more in a shorter time with less stress.
As the reach and powers of automation grow, what trends can we look for as we move deeper into the 21st century?
1. More DC Power
Thomas Edison insisted that direct current was the best way to apply electricity, while his rival Nikola Tesla insisted AC, or alternating current, was the answer. While Edison became more famous, at least in the short-term, it was Tesla’s power philosophy that won out. AC power has been standard in most machines and appliances for much of the electronic age.
However, the tide may be turning. The rise of high-voltage transmission lines makes DC more viable and efficient than AC power. Server farms largely use DC power, as do many of today’s computers and computer components.
Also, solar power, which many consider the energy source of the future, must now be converted from DC to AC power to use in most appliances. Expect more and greater use of DC power in automated devices in the future.
2. Smarter Robots
Robots have been around for a while — and many industries can no longer survive without them. But we can expect the scope of what robots are capable of to widen dramatically over the next few decades. We don’t have to fear them taking over the world, but we can expect them to be capable of many more complex tasks and to continue to do even more as time goes along. Some robots will work independently, while we will control others wirelessly.
3. Better Wireless Technology
In the future, it’s possible that every machine in a factory or warehouse will be controlled wirelessly from a digital device. Operators can remain safely above the floor while giving direct commands to machines below who will do all the work and record their results for easy digital access. In addition to better control systems, we can also expect engineers and designers to create more apps specifically for industrial applications.
There are many new advancements everyday in the world of automation, and many more to come! We would love to hear about new advancements happening in your industry! Please feel free to comment below!