Are you a lover of solving problems? Do you find yourself enthralled in the subjects of programming, electronics or machinery? Then you are probably a Robotic Engineer or soon to be one. This role is essentially an engineer who works behind the scenes bringing robots to life and creating robotic systems that are able to undertake duties that humans can’t or don’t want to do.
One of the greatest examples is the Roomba which was developed because somebody was too lazy to vacuum their floor and wanted a robot to do it instead. Through their developments, Robotic Engineers make peoples’ lives safer, more convenient and generally easier.
A Robotic Engineer is unlike another discipline in that you are required to be proficient in many other technical areas. A Robotic Engineer acts as a bridge, in a way, between computer science, cognitive psychology, electronics and of course - mechanics.
These engineers will look forward to spending their time coming up with processes and plans for not only the construction of robots but also the troubleshooting and stability augmentation that comes afterwards. Some Robotic Engineers are even responsible for the design of the machines which build the robots too.
Before a robot is built, the engineer must figure out exactly what its purpose is and since robots are designed to take the burden off humans and replace them in a way - the engineer must undertake a profound analysis of exactly the hurdles that the robot will face. They ask themselves: what problem does the robot actually solve? Is it repetitive? Is it dangerous for humans? What other factors might affect the robot’s performance? All of these questions need to be answered before preparing to design the bot.
Robotic Engineers, like most engineers, will make use of CAD (computer-aided design) to allow them to conceptualise the bot from top to bottom - all the way to the circuits. Robots are incredibly difficult to build and the process of putting one together requires a long time. That’s the reasons why it’s not unusual for a Robotic Engineer to just work on a few projects throughout their whole career.
- Designing robots
- Configuring and testing your bots
- Coming up with robotic solutions to increase productivity and precision within a specific industry or sector
- Designing software to control the robotic systems for bots that are used in the manufacturing industry
- Constantly analysing and evaluating prototypes of robotic systems that you may have created - it goes without saying that this is a never-ending task as the field widens and new technologies emerge
- Coming up with, approving and reporting cost estimates and outgoings
- You must serve as the support point-of-contact for any robotic systems you create
- Introduction of plan paths into the robots
- Stay on the cutting-edge of robotics so you can always create the best robots possible
Robots are most commonly employed within the fields of food packaging, automotive, home appliance and electronic industries.
As a Robotic Engineer, you will be spending a lot of time in the office and a lot of time testing in the laboratory. If you’re in the lab, you will of course be working on the small moving parts which make up the components of the whole robot that you are building. If you’re in the office then you will be designing, reporting or executing research.
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