By Jasmin Wagner
Taking driving lessons and passing an exam – this is necessary to get a driving license. There is no such thing as this when operating robots, but KUKA has the perfect schedule to guide users just as safely to operating a robot.
With a quiet hum, the orange-colored robot runs along the specified path and then swings upwards. The young woman at the controller nods contentedly: Task successfully completed. At the robot cell next door, a trainer explains the smartPad manual control unit, and a group of young men dismantle a gigantic heavy-duty industrial robot on the floor below. In short: a normal Tuesday at KUKA College in Augsburg.
The preliminary statistics of the World Robotics Report show that a new record of 384,000 robot units was delivered worldwide in 2018. So more and more people are working with robots in their everyday lives. Teaching yourself how to program a robot requires routine and time to try it out – which you usually don’t have in your daily work. When working on an automated line or cell, this can lead to production losses and financial losses.
KUKA has therefore been helping to optimize production processes and the handling of robots for over 20 years and has created the KUKA College for this purpose. At more than 30 locations worldwide, certified trainers train users in the use of KUKA robots.
Special training for robotics in everyday working life
In around 150 different courses, all occupational groups that come into contact with a robot are addressed, from integration, programming, configuration and operation to maintenance. In Augsburg alone, around 6,000 course participants are trained in the use of robots every year.
One thing is particularly important here, as Gerhard Müller, Vice President Customer Services – Region Germany, explains: “We attach great importance to the high quality of the training through specially tailored training. Both the training of our trainers and the equipment of the colleges themselves are based on global standards”.
The seminars provide employees a wide variety of companies with extensive know-how that goes beyond the mere solution of an acute problem and imparts in-depth knowledge. At around 300 training robots worldwide, they can put what they have learnt into practice, freely move the robots around and thus develop a more experienced way of handling them.
Screwing and testing without risk
In a model street in the college, participants can also practice entire work processes and thus work in a more structured, concentrated and efficient manner. This not only has a positive effect on occupational safety, but also on the quality of work processes. Because once a whole line is at a standstill, this means losses for companies.
This is why course participants in the college have the opportunity to try out all the robots, unscrew them and touch them – in contrast to an ongoing production without risk or loss. Klaus Petter, Team Leader Training South, is responsible for the college at the Augsburg headquarters and explains with a wink that in theory “everything can be broken and put back together”.
And in the unlikely event of production disruptions, KUKA customers have the option of having their own service technicians trained at KUKA College. That way, the fault can be quickly rectified on site by a technician in the event of a malfunction.
Thus, it is not only the robot operators themselves who benefit from a training course through safer and more routine work. The company also achieves more efficient and high-quality results in production in this way. Therefore, KUKA Colleges prepare workers and companies for everyday work with their orange-colored helpers.
Here you can find out more about what KUKA Colleges have to offer.