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Automate 2011 Expected to Fuel Growth of Robotics, Machine Vision and Motion Control

POSTED 03/16/2011

(Ann Arbor, Michigan USA) - Automate 2011 is expected to fuel investments in robotics, machine vision, motion control and related automation technologies, according to sponsors of the event taking place March 21-24 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

“Demand for solutions incorporating these technologies has been growing rapidly over the past year so the timing is excellent for an event like Automate 2011 that focuses on manufacturing and non-manufacturing applications of robotics, machine vision, and motion control,” said Jeff Burnstein, President of Automation Technologies Council, the primary sponsor.

“The robotics market in North America was up 49% in 2010 and machine vision was likely up even more,” Burnstein said.  “These technologies are helping companies in virtually every industry improve productivity, product quality, and profitability.  For companies looking to use robotics, machine vision or motion control, this is the leading show in North America.”

Burnstein said attendees of Automate 2011 will see the latest products from 150 companies, as well as demonstrations of complete solutions from more than 20 leading system integrators.

“The integrators are the key to successful applications because they understand the automation technologies as well as the specific challenges their customers face,” Burnstein said.

“We’ve devoted the entire front of the show to complete solutions and have several conference sessions that focus on case studies of successful solutions using robotics, machine vision and related automation,” Burnstein explained.

“Our goal is for visitors to find out what they can do immediately to use these technologies to become stronger global competitors.  We also want to inspire them by highlighting small companies like Marlin Steel Wire who invested in robotics in order to beat their global competitors.  All companies, regardless of size or industry, can learn an eye-opening lesson from Marlin’s President, Drew Greenblatt,” Burnstein asserted.

Greenblatt speaks during a session on Cost Justifying Automation at 10:00 am on Tuesday, March 22.  “For companies who haven’t yet purchased a robot or a vision system, this session will provide valuable insights on just how affordable the technology is.  You don’t have to be a big company to benefit from automation and the technologies are far easier to use today than ever before,” Burnstein noted.

While the show focuses primarily on current technology, it also takes a look back and a look forward.

“This year is the 50th anniversary of the installation of the first industrial robot, so we’ll have a special tribute pavilion honoring the occasion,” said Burnstein.

“We’ll also feature a pavilion on Emerging Robotics where visitors can see how robots have moved beyond the factory into homes, hospitals, offices and other non-industrial settings,” Burnstein said.

The Automate 2011 Show is free to people 16 years of age or older.  Exhibits are open from 10-5 pm on March 21-23, 10 am to 3 pm on March 24.  

Two free keynotes are also featured:  Tom Ridge, former Secretary of Homeland Security, speaks at 8:45 am on Monday, March 21, while NASA and General Motors discuss the Robonaut 2 humanoid robot recently launched into space during a Tuesday, March 22 keynote at 8:45 am.

Other free sessions on Robots in Education take place on Thursday, March 24 beginning at 8:30 am. “We hope that educators and high-school and above students will take advantage of this opportunity to learn about innovative programs and meet key people from the research, user and supplier community,” Burnstein said.

More than 40 conference sessions and tutorials are offered at Automate 2011, with fees ranging from $255 for one day to $895 for all four days.

Complete registration details are available at www.automate2011.com or by calling ATC Headquarters at 734/994-6088.  Click here for the Automate 2011 Fact Sheet.

ATC is the umbrella group for the Robotic Industries Association (RIA), the Automated Imaging Association (AIA), and the Motion Control Association (MCA).  Combined, these trade groups represent some 575 manufacturers, component suppliers, system integrators, distributors, consulting firms and research groups.

For information about the RIA, visit www.robotics.org; for AIA, visit www.MachineVisionOnline.org; for MCA, visit www. MotionControlOnline.org.

Jeff Burnstein