HANOVER, Germany, April 27 (Xinhua) -- Collaborative robot (Cabot), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Logistics 4.0 were the technological highlights of the 2018 edition of Hannover Messe, Germany's world-leading industry fair, which concluded Friday.
Cabot stressed the importance and irreplaceability of human being in industrial activities. Unlike traditional industrial robots, which perform in physically isolated units, cobots come into direct contact with their human colleagues.
Jochen Kockler, chairman of the organizer Deutsche Messe, stressed the importance of human being in the digital transformation of the industry.
"Technology is not about competing with us humans, it's about assisting us," he said. "We (humans) are the ones making the decisions and setting the course."
Germany's industrial control and automation company FESTO has showcased their latest Cobot products in a simulation scene with technical elements of AI, Augmented Reality (AR) and Internet of Things (IoT).
The operator can control the bionic cobot arm through voice command, and move the arm from a distance without physical touch with the help of AR glasses and wearable devices.
"The strict separation between human and machine due to safety consideration could not exist in future anymore," said the operator.
AI, featuring machine learning, empowers machine with the ability to independently draw knowledge from experience. Around 75 percent of businesses will apply AI technology by 2021, said a latest study by International Data Cooperation.
Ulrich Spiesshofer, chief executive officer of a Swedish-Swiss automation and technology company ABB, told Xinhua, "AI makes machines learn fast."
Spiesshofer cited the example of how YuMi, a robot developed by ABB, had conducted a 15-minute opera in Italy last year, after only 17-hour preparation with the help of software programming.
According to experts, companies that use machine learning processes increase their economic performance. The biggest gains are expected in the IT and finance sectors, telecommunications, and the manufacturing industry.
Logistics 4.0, also known as Digital Logistics, helps companies further automate their supply chains and how they add value, including gapless monitoring and overall efficiency boosting.
An international logistics fair CeMAT has run in parallel with this year's Messe. Toyota Material Handling Europe has showcased its new one-stop digital solution platform "T-Stream" and control system "T-ONE" to optimize services for its users, with the help of which autonomous forklift can precisely move loads to 11 meters in height.