Robot Safety Standards: A Brief Overview

robot safety standardsAs industrial robots continue to become more advanced, more capable and more popular on the international stage, the need for comprehensive robot safety standards increases exponentially.

Robots can be dangerous to operate – especially when safety protocols aren’t followed. While standards for operation are important, safety standards have a far larger impact than safe operation of industrial robots.

Robots are a relatively new technology and still gaining widespread adoption, so you may be wondering, what is a robot safety standard? Why do they matter?

What is a Robot Safety Standard?

A robot safety standard is a collection of guidelines for robot specifications and safe operations in which all involved in the manufacture, sales and use of robots must follow. Often, standards are created by a diverse group of industry interests to ensure the standards benefit everyone.

Some common standards organizations include:

  • American National Standards Institute (ANSI)
    • U.S. Standards Body including CSA, BSI, DIN, AFNOR, JISC and more
  • International Organization for Standardization (ISO)
    • International Standards Body
  • International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC)
    • International Standards Body

Much of the work of robot safety standards organizations is involved in making international robot standards. This is where robot safety standards begin to have a much larger impact on the global market.

Why Are Robot Safety Standards Important?

Robot safety standards are beneficial to the global robotics industry in many ways, which is why so many experts from various fields divert time and energy into developing effective standards.

Every country has different robot safety standards. International standards organizations work to unify and assimilate these separate sets of robot standards into a more cohesive whole. This allows for easier use and sales of industrial robots – stabilizing markets and incentivizing the further growth of robotics as a whole.

Robot safety standards are still evolving and will continue to evolve as the global market for industrial robots grows and inevitably changes. They play an important role in the international adoption of industrial robots, even if you may not have heard of them before.