Robotics Week attracts interest in Finland

Finnish experts predict that the use of robots will increase significantly in the service sector.

The use of robotics has increased significantly in industry and is next set to transform the transport and logistics sectors, according to Ville Kyrki, Professor of Automation Technology at Aalto University. Speaking at the Robotics Week event held in Finland held this week, Kyrki noted that robots are also being considered as an aid to elderly care.

The event is part of the European Robotics Week 2013, offering robotics related activities which aim to inspire students of all ages to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math as well providing information for the general public, and encouraging government and business actors to explore the use of robots.

Opportunities and expertise

“I believe that robotics presents a great opportunity for us,” said Erkki Virtanen, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, at the opening of the Robotics Week. He predicts that the routine work in the retail trade, logistics and telephone and IT services will be taken over by robots. According to Timo Toissalo, Head of Field Service and Training, Customer Service, Robotics at ABB, currently about 130 robots are delivered to companies in Finland yearly.

In addition to ABB, there are several companies in Finland with high-level robotics expertise. Fastems manufactures and supplies flexible manufacturing systems and robot cells to the metal cutting industries to automate the manufacturing and finishing processes. Rocla develops and manufactures automated guided vehicles, and ZenRobotics has created the first robotic waste sorting system in the world.

Sources: Talouselämä, Tietoviikko, Fastems, Rocla, ZenRobotics