Most Common Errors That Make Robots Become Hazardous

While the popularity of industrial robot arms continues to grow worldwide, some people forget that as much as they can mimic humans they are still machines. Others are so afraid to install them in their workplaces because they do not feel safe working alongside them every day. The perception that robots are not safe to work with comes becomes they use programmes and sensors that some people fear may stop working leading to catastrophic situations. 

This however is far from the truth because all the robots go through a risk assessment during the development of the robot cells to ensure that they are safe to work with humans. It is however important to note that even with the risk assessments, robots can still have problems caused by various factors.  

Kinds of errors


  • Errors caused by humans


Humans make errors in almost everything they do. Most of these errors are unintentional but they can cause a lot of damage if not rectified. During the robot cell development several actions such as programming and pendant control take place. If not done well, the robots can cause hazards to the operators or to people at the place hat adopts that particular robot.


  • Errors in the controls software and hardware


The control system of every robot should work well to avoid any hazards. If the system fails, he working environment along with the people working with the robots face imminent danger. Therefore before installation, you must make sure that the operator checks that all he control systems are okay. If you buy your robots from a reputable firm, then this should not be a problem because they go through the systems thoroughly and provide a technician or an engineer to walk you through everything about the robot before installation. 


  • Mechanical part failures


Many of today’s industries are adopting the use of collaborative robots for various applications. Cobots work alongside people and it is very important that they go through a thorough mechanical check during the programming stages. Cobots, especially one with an industrial robot arm and if it has a mechanical failure, it can lead to a hazardous situation both to the operator and the people working alongside the robotic arm. 


  • Access by unauthorised personnel


During the programming of the robot cell, there are operators set aside to do the job. Any chance that another operator with no experience gets to handle the software and hardware, then problems could arise leading to a dangerous and even fatal situation. Before installing, make sure that all the work on the cell went through the hands of a qualified and experienced operator to avoid any risks at the work place. 


  • Outside environmental factors


Factors such as communication play a big role in the making of a robotic work cell. Power surges and losses may affect the cell and lead to injuries. For safety purposes, make sure that the lines of communication are clear and you take steps beforehand in case there is a power loss. 


  • Poor installation


It is very important that the installation processes go well without any hitches to avoid any problems from occurring. Proper installation will ensure safety for the operators and the staff. The setup of the robotic work cell must go through another final check to ensure that everything is in order before installing. 


  • Poor control of energy


The robotic cell uses communication from power sources. If there is the slightest disruption the cells could give out the wrong signals or stop working all together. They can also release a dangerous amount of energy that could lead to a hazardous environment. To prevent such undesired results, you should make sure that the power systems work well and have good control of energy going into the cell. 

Wrapping it up

All the above hazards are easy to prevent if everything goes according to the book right from the beginning. Frequent education and training to the staff about the robots and their maintenance is also vital to avoid any dangerous situations. Not treating robots as if they are humans is also another vital factor, as it will enable you to keep your distance. It is important to note any signs of failures right from the initial stages to avoid any [problems.