The Automotive Industry is The Driver of Robotics in Mexico
Robotics in Mexico is increasingly becoming commonplace technology
A substantial part of modern manufacturing requires the utilization of automation solutions that include robots. Since 2010, the demand for this emerging technology has accelerated due to a continuous trend of automating complex industrial processes. As is the case with the rest of the industrialized world, robotics in Mexico is becoming increasingly commonplace. This is especially true as it relates to the country’s technologically advanced and vibrant automotive industry.
An increasingly educated and high-tech workforce will be needed to further implement robotics in Mexico
According to a study published by the International Federation of Robotics in 2018, global robot sales to the automotive industry have grown by a healthy 22% since the beginning of the decade. Worldwide, the automotive industry is in the lead when it comes to the adoption of such technology. As of 2017, automotive manufacturers represented 33% of the total robots utilized across the globe. The report also points out that robotics in Mexico represents an emerging market. Sergio Bautista, manager of the Robotics Business Unit of ABB Mexico, believes that the new automotive production models being brought to Mexico will increasingly require robotic solutions by the Mexican automotive industry. He is also of the opinion that his company, ABB, will be at the forefront of robotics in Mexico for the foreseeable future.
As robotics in Mexico are increasingly employed by the country’s automotive sector, Mexico will continue to have the need to educate an expanding cadre of trained engineers and high-tech workers that will be able to master advanced manufacturing operations. Major automotive brands with production facilities in Mexico such as VW, Toyota, Nissan, Ford, Honda, Volvo Trucks, Scania, Isuzu, and Kenworth are progressively pursuing the implementation of robotics in Mexico. This is also the trend among Tier 1 manufacturers that are supplying the automotive OEMs. Included among these producers are companies such as Delphi, Johnson Controls, Clarions, Rassini, Nemak and Lear to name a few. For example, Lear, a manufacturer of automotive wire harnesses, is using robotics in Mexico to drill the bases of the seats where they are installed. It also uses this technology to monitor defective products and to remove them from conveyor belts. The company’s implementation of robotics in Mexico has resulted in an increase in both production speed and product reliability.
Industry 4.0 will make Mexican manufacturing facilities “smart”
According to ABB’s Bautista, when it comes to robotics in Mexico, the country is ranked at 23rd out of the top 25 nations that are steadily adopting and implementing this technology. The ABB executive points out that the use of robotics and automation in Mexico will be based upon three pillars. These are simplification, collaboration, and digitalization. They are necessary for developing the Mexican “smart” factories of the future and will bring about the country’s full participation in the fourth industrial revolution, or “Industry 4.0.” “Industry 4.0” is the name given to the current trend of automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies.
In addition to affecting the areas of production speed and reliability, robotics in Mexico, which is the central component to the implementation of Industry 4.0, will also influence continuous productivity, machine safety, and industry value chains. In the near future in the Mexican automotive industry, companies will also increasingly invest in collaborative applications that employ robotics in the areas of final assembly and finishing tasks. Although small and mid-sized suppliers to the automotive industry in Mexico will be slower to employ robotics in Mexico, we can expect this to change as the technology becomes smaller, more adaptable, easier to program, and less intensive in its use of capital.