Introduction to Robotics

Robotics is an interdisciplinary branch of engineering and science that includes mechanical, engineering, electronic engineering, information technology, computer Science and others. The main features of robotics are design. The construction of a robot system and its operation is also equally important. Robotics is not only limited to the use of robots. It also uses computer systems for their control, sensory feedback and information processing. Robot was coined from the Slavic word robota, meaning labour/work. This term was first used by Karl Capek inn one of his plays, but he states it to be coined by his brother Josef Capek.

In a rawer language, the study of robots is called as Robotics. It is a branch of engineering that involves conception, design, manufacture, and operations of robots. Robotics is not a single branch. It is a mixture of Electronics with Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, Mechatronics, Nanotechnology and Bioengineering.

Also Read: Machine Learning

What is a robot?

Robots are machines that are used to do work that is mostly difficult for humans to perform. Some robots work automatically by themselves while others need human intervention to complete a job. The Robotics Industry is related to engineering, constructions and operations of Robots in a broad and diverse field. Robots are related to many commercial industries and consumer uses. Robots are physically discrete units, thought to have own intelligence, and their actions are limited by their programming and capabilities.

Robotics involves concentrating at how many physical constructed technology systems can perform a task or play a role in any interface or new technology.

Robotics is a greatly advanced field with several general tech achievements. Some of them could be stated as under:

  • Rise of Big Data: Robotics offers the opportunity to build programming capacity into the robotic systems.
  • Use of sensors and actuators: Robotics make use of the different kinds of sensors and actuators to monitor environmental aspects.

Robotics would serve and generate more complex and sophisticated robots for many uses including health and safety, manufacturing and human assistance. It intersects with some issues around artificial intelligence.

Robots have been widely used by NASA. They have Robotic Arm to move large objects on or near spacecrafts. They also have Rovers that explore the surface of Mars as per instruction provided by the Scientists.

Robotics is used to develop machines that can replace humans and replicate human actions. The Robots are used in mostly in dangerous situations such as bomb detection and deactivation, manufacturing processes, or where humans cannot survive. They can be shaped into any form according to requirement. Some of the robots are also shaped as humans such as Sofia (the social robot).

Components of a Robot

Robots differ according to different environment and has diverse applications and form but most of the robots have a similarity in the construction. Some of the similarities could be mentioned as:

  1. Mechanical construction: It is a frame, form or shape designed to achieve a task. An example could be considered as Robots designed to travel across dirt and mud might use Caterpillar Tracks.
  2. Electrical components: These are used to power and control the machinery. Robot with caterpillar tracks would need power to move tracker threads.
  3. Computer Programming Code: The Robots need to have some sort of computer programming code. This code would decide when and how to do something. Programs are the core of a robot. The performance of a robot depends not only on the hardware components but also on the code fed into the robot. There could be three types of Robot Control Codes: Remote control, Artificial Intelligence or Hybrid.

Applications of Robotics

Some applications of Robotics could be stated as:

  1. Military Robots
  2. Industrial Robots
  3. Agriculture robots
  4. Medical Robots
  5. Swarm robotics
  6. Autonomous drones
  7. Domestic Robots
  8. Nanorobots
  9. Robots combat for Sports etc.

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