SMEs in Scotland’s engineering and fabrication sector can find out more about the benefits of collaborative robots – or ‘cobots’ – at a free event on Thursday 23 September. Hosted by Smart Hub Lanarkshire, a state-of-the-art centre that will help manufacturing SMEs to grow and prepare for the future, the online seminar is the final instalment of a trio of summer events promoting the benefits of robotic technologies.
Aimed at SMEs that are considering introducing automation, the event will be delivered by industry professionals in the field of robotics, who will answer questions and help attendees make informed investment decisions. Delegates will also get an insight into business support services available to them.
Speakers will include Mark Gray of Danish company Universal Robots, who will provide a summary of the flexibility and adaptability of collaborative robots. Braden Henderson of SP Elements – Scotland’s only integrator and distributor of Universal Robots – will give an overview of how cobots can perform a series of repetitive tasks in a production line.
Delegates will also hear from John Campbell of Scottish Engineering, who will share insights on work that Scottish Engineering is doing to help develop Rail Decarbonisation, Net Zero & Offshore supply opportunities for the sector.
Colette McMorrow of Lanarkshire Enterprise Services will detail the financial support available through the Scottish Government’s Digital Development Loan Fund, which can provide interest-free loans of between £5,000 and £100,000.
“This event is a must if you are considering introducing automated processes to your factory – we hope it will inspire many engineering and fabrication SMEs to take that first step towards a digital manufacturing process. As well as technical queries, our team can also help you find answers to your funding questions. Our previous events for the Food and Drink and Life Sciences sectors have been really well-attended, with the demonstrations of the cobots in action proving particularly popular,” said Barry Skea, Head of Faculty of Engineering at New College Lanarkshire.
Smart Hub Lanarkshire, which is a partnership between North Lanarkshire Council, New College Lanarkshire and the University of Strathclyde, is home to a robotics and automation training facility and a dedicated space for SMEs to meet, learn and access business support and academic expertise.
Since launching virtually in April, the Hub has attracted more than 250 people to register for events, showing the interest that exists in the new facility amongst the manufacturing sector and business support community. The Hub aims to physically open its doors at New College Lanarkshire’s Motherwell Campus later this year, subject to Covid restrictions.
It is one of 12 projects to be awarded a share of £15.8m of funding from the Scottish Government through the Advancing Manufacturing Challenge Fund.