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Uncover the development history of robots in China: from robots to service robots editor's note: perhaps in the near future, when you go out, you don't have to worry about forgetting to lock the door or the patronage of liangshangjunzi, because the home security robot will help you look after your home in order to extract useful signals from disturbing signals; When you are about to leave work, just one robot can help you prepare a delicious dinner... Robots are gradually becoming an indispensable helper for the future society and family

although 71 year old Cao Xiangkang has retired for many years, he still wants to give play to some "waste heat" for the development of robots in China. Participating in the preparation of the Research Report on robot development strategy is one of his main jobs at present, and occasionally tutors his grandson's homework. "Today's children are amazing. They participate in the robot design competition in middle school. I didn't know about robots until I was in my 30s."

in the view of one of the pioneers of China's robot industry and the former director of the robot research office of Beijing Institute of mechanical industry automation, what is even more "remarkable" is the rapid development of China's robot technology in the past 30 years

from the initial manipulator to the current service robot, robots are playing an increasingly important role in improving product quality, developing green manufacturing, and serving people's lives. "In the near future, robots will be able to do everything that people can't do, can't do well, and don't want to do." He said with a smile

manipulator: the first batch of industrial robots in China

when talking about robots, you may first think of the American blockbuster transformers. However, Cao Xiangkang told that robots in real life do not necessarily have human shape characteristics. The United States developed the first industrial robot in 1958, which looks a bit like a tank. Early robots in China are also far from human shape

in the early 1970s, Chinese scientific and technological personnel keenly captured the information of foreign robot research from foreign magazines and began to spontaneously study robots. "At that time, imported magazines were very expensive, and research units were not willing to buy them. Every time, they had to ride their bikes to the machinery industry information institute to check information. Russian was ok, but English was not very good, so they had to find information while learning English." The hardships of starting are far more than these. "Chinese people can't use it and still build robots?" A publication published in Shanghai even regards robots as the object of criticism and puts on the hat of "idealistic pseudoscience"

in this regard, Cao Xiangkang said that China has a large population, but not any harsh environment is suitable for people to work, such as dust, toxic gas, noise, vibration, high and low temperature, radioactivity, high voltage electrification, underwater work and other harsh working environments, using robots to work can release people. However, "to be on the safe side, we decided to translate robot into 'Manipulator'."

while scientific research institutes and universities "mend" robot theory, factory technicians also began to seek breakthroughs in practice. At that time, during the loading and unloading of stamping operations in Chinese factories, due to the rapid production pace and the lack of corresponding safety protection settings, the fingers of workers may be cut off if they are slightly careless. "Out of the feelings for the working class", coupled with the need for technological innovation, technicians in factories in Shanghai, Northeast China and other places spontaneously developed manipulators, such as the automobile lamp shell stamping manipulator developed by Shanghai No. 2 auto parts factory and the forging loading and unloading manipulator developed by Tianjin forging machinery factory. These are the first batch of industrial robots in China

"the control principle of the early manipulator is very simple. Basically, it is to locate the 'block'. If you change to punching other parts, you can screw down the screws to adjust the position of the 'block'. Cao laofeng said," these simple technologies have solved many practical problems, and the accidents of broken fingers in the factory have been significantly reduced, and the work efficiency has also been greatly improved. "

industrial robots: driving into the fast lane of national planning and development

in the mid-1980s, there were more than 200 research and development units of robots in China, large and small. However, because most of them were engaged in low-level and repetitive research, there was no robot product in the country. Until 1985, the talent of machine insulation in China ushered in the "spring"

in December 1983, the internal staff of Xinhua News Agency reached the Central Committee directly with an article suggesting the development of robot technology in China. Song Ping, then director of the State Planning Commission, gave instructions of "giving attention and appropriate support". "The director of the science and Technology Department of the State Planning Commission conveyed to me that we should organize expert argumentation as soon as possible and submit the preliminary framework of the 'Seventh Five Year' development plan for industrial robots that further strengthen cooperation with financial institutions such as CDB." Cao Xiangkang was so excited that he couldn't sleep that night that he was usually reluctant to take a taxi. He made an exception and hung up a long-distance call to some foreign counterparts

in 1985, industrial robots were included in the research focus of the national "Seventh Five Year Plan" for scientific and technological research, with the goal focused on five aspects: the basic technology of industrial robots, the development of basic devices, the development and research of handling, spraying and welding robots

"according to the planning requirements, not only the prototype should be made, but also the prototype should be used for production." Caoxiangkang research laboratory is responsible for the development of painting robots. The time left for them was less than 4 years. It was conceivable that they were facing difficulties at that time, but no one thought of retreating. "The state gives us money to do it, and we have to do it even if we work hard." Cao Xiangkang's words were resounding

with this effort, the industrial spray painting robot PJ-1 was completed as scheduled in 1990. This is the first spray painting robot in China. The expert appraisal results show that "its main technical performance has reached the level of similar foreign products in the mid-1980s." This robot has also become a star, "wearing big red flowers to exhibitions everywhere, it is very beautiful."

at the same time, the commercial prototypes of other robots have also been completed, and application demonstration sites such as automatic painting production lines, cab welding lines, arc welding workstations have been established in the first automobile factory, the second automobile factory and Nanjing Automobile Factory respectively. "The cost of importing foreign technology has been saved by nearly millions of dollars." More importantly, China has formed a technical team engaged in robot research and development. Speaking of this, Cao Xiangkang smiled happily

since the early 1990s, with the support of the national "863" program, China's industrial robots have taken another big step forward in practice. Seven kinds of industrial robot products with independent intellectual property rights, including spot welding, arc welding, assembly, painting, cutting, handling, packaging and stacking, have come out one after another. More than 100 robot application projects have been implemented and more than 20 robot industrialization bases have been established

in international competition, the advantages of China's industrial robots are also increasingly prominent. Jiapeifa, a professor in the Department of computer science and technology of Tsinghua University and the leader of the fourth and fifth national "863" intelligent robot theme expert groups, for example, said that in 1995, the Beijing motorcycle factory planned to establish nine robot workstations. Although the world-famous robot manufacturer ABB repeatedly promised that its quotation was much lower than that of China's Xinsong company, Beijing finally chose Xinsong

underwater robot: robot technology ranks in the forefront of the world

June 18, 1997, is a proud day in China's robot field. The vast sea testifies: the successful test and application of China's 6000 meter cordless underwater robot marks that China's underwater robot technology has reached the world's advanced level, and China has become one of the few countries in the world with deep-sea exploration capabilities, winning the initiative for China to develop marine resources in the new century

"people regard it as successfully launching a recoverable 'ocean satellite'." Jia peifa said

such an evaluation is not excessive. In the deep sea of about 6000 meters, the large area of the thumb nail cap has to bear nearly 1 ton of pressure; Under the influence of sea water and currents, underwater robots are more difficult to command and locate than in the air; Due to the serious attenuation of electromagnetic waves in water, sonar can only be used to contact; In order to resist the corrosion of seawater to materials, special corrosion-resistant materials must be used; In the 1970s and 1980s, jiangxinsong of the Shenyang Institute of automation of the Chinese Academy of Sciences proposed the idea of "taking robots working in special environments as a breakthrough in the development of Chinese robot technology" in combination with China's national conditions. On one occasion, when investigating the South China Sea fleet, he learned that due to the needs of maritime rescue or oil exploitation, it is difficult for divers to see the target below 20 meters when working underwater. When working in deep water below 50 meters, they can only touch it by hand, which is very harmful to human body. Sometimes, the cost of underwater breathing for divers is equivalent to one gram of gold per minute

this strengthened Jiang Xinsong's determination to study underwater robots. With the full support of several highly respected scientists, Jiang Xinsong received more than 1 million yuan of scientific research funding from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and began the development of the "Hai Ren 1" 100 meter underwater robot, which was successfully launched in 1985 and 1986. During the Seventh Five Year Plan period, the state listed the "development of marine and underwater robot technology" as one of the key scientific and technological projects

however, "before the implementation of the National 863 program, all the underwater robots developed in China were wired remote-control underwater robots with a working depth of only 300 meters." Jia peifa said

At the end of 1986, the No. 24 document of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China listed intelligent robots as one of the two major themes in the automation field of the National 863 plan, code named 512. Its main goal is to "track the world's advanced level and develop special robots operating in extreme environments such as underwater robots"

under the careful organization of the National 863 program, the explorer was successfully developed in 1994. Its working depth reached 1000 meters, and it lost the cable connecting with the mother ship, realizing a leap from cable to cable. Since June, 1992, it has cooperated with the Institute of marine technology of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and has successively developed "CR-01, cr-02" 6000 meter cordless autonomous underwater robots, which provide advanced equipment for the investigation and development of deep-sea resources in China

in 2008, underwater robots were used for the first time in China's third Arctic scientific expedition under ice test, and a large number of first-hand scientific research data such as sea ice thickness and ice bottom morphology were obtained

"in the past, when we investigated abroad, deep-water robots didn't even allow us to visit. In the 1990s, they invited us at their expense. They wanted to stop the central cleaning and protection cooperation with us." Jia peifa is extremely proud of the changes that are not what they used to be

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