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Industrial automation goes back thousands of years, offering humankind the opportunity to learn and become independent.

When you think about it, industrial automation is remarkable.

Since the birth of agriculture, it’s taken countless failed inventions to achieve the successes that have helped humanity rise above day-to-day survival.

Now, in the 21st century, we enjoy hours of leisure time, diverse jobs, and security in knowing where our food, clothes, and other products are coming from.

Read on to learn about three massive evolutions in industrial automation that have brought us to where we are today.

3 greatest moments in industrial automation history

The beginning

Several thousand years ago, the advent of farming and agriculture changed humanity forever. With advancements in agricultural technology, humans could afford leisure time, as well as focus on other jobs to improve society and stabilize the population.

For example, the development of steel plows and the cotton gin made it faster and easier to break up soil and plant seeds, and the cotton gin made cotton production more efficient.

The Industrial Revolution in the 18th and 19th centuries was another technological boom that shaped the way we manufacture today.

With factories, the production line, and the invention of the modern-day clock, creating products that would have taken days to produce could suddenly be completed within an hour. Henry Ford’s Model T car is one example.

The “beginning” of industrial automation took many centuries, but constant innovation and dedication to progress lifted manufacturing to unforeseeable heights.

Industrial robots

The next major shift in industrial automation birthed the first industrial robot: the Unimate.

Its inventor, Geroge Devol, built the Unimate in a small Connecticut town in 1961. Similar to the industrial robots of today, it had a single arm designed for repetitive tasks. The arm weighed an impressive 4,000 pounds. The automation industry was the first to adopt the Unimate for metalworking and welding.

Since the Unimate, industrial robots have expanded into a wide range of applications to choose from, such as:

  • Material handling
  • Painting
  • Machine tending
  • Picking and palletizing
  • Gluing, sealing, and spraying
  • Waterjet cutting
  • Assembly
  • Welding

Now, you can purchase industrial robots from top manufacturers such as KUKA, ABB, and FANUC from the iGAM Marketplace. With affordable prices, two ways to finance, and up to 1 year warranty coverage, you can automate your production line with ease.

Additionally, robots have made their way out of manufacturing and into other industries such as medicine. Surgeons use robots to assist with very delicate surgeries, such as head and neck or heart surgeries.

Because of the Unimate, companies around the world have benefited from increased precision, productivity, and uptime with industrial robots.

Digital manufacturing

Today, we are experiencing the Fourth Industrial Revolution, or Industry 4.0.

Industrial automation is becoming smarter. With the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), and more, manufacturing is going digital.

“Smart factories” are facilities that use digital manufacturing to improve production and get further insights into data for better decision making.

Data is at the center of Industry 4.0. With data from industrial robots and smart devices, manufacturers have a greater ability to reduce energy costs and minimize downtime so they can remain competitive in their industry. As globalization increases, using lean manufacturing practices and keeping up with current trends is necessary for long-term company survival.

Access to data across the supply chain will also help manufacturers become more sustainable through intelligent energy and resource usage. As consumers become greener and demand more from companies, digital manufacturing will keep companies relevant.

Automate your facility with iGAM

Industrial automation is key to success in today’s economy. If you’re looking to add industrial robots to your production line, you’ve come to the right place.

iGAM offers refurbished industrial robots from KUKA, ABB, FANUC, and more so you can increase throughput and capacity. You can also find robot controllers, parts, and other equipment to complete your automated production line.

Plus, we can design, build, and engineer a custom work cell for you. Let us take on the hard part: tell us what you need and we’ll deliver and install a turnkey automation solution that suits your production needs.

Small- to mid-sized manufacturers are encouraged to shop our inventory. We provide two ways to finance so you can automate on a budget:

  • Fill out the quick application on the product page and choose the best financing plan from the nation’s top lenders.
  • Apply for credit with our partner Behalf and purchase any equipment you need while making low monthly payments.

Alongside our sister company, NRTC Automation, we are your one-stop-shop for industrial automation products and services. We make automation accessible for every manufacturer so you can grow your company without breaking the bottom line.

Learn more by visiting iGAM and NRTC Automation today.

Get up to 80 percent off industrial robots

iGAM is the leading online marketplace for used industrial robots, robot parts, and manufacturing equipment.

We specialize in providing affordable products that meet the demands of your business and enjoy working with our customers to deliver the results they expect. With unbeatable prices, selection, and customer service, iGAM aims to be the ultimate destination for automation products across the industry and an essential part of every manufacturer’s asset management strategy.

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iGAM is the leading online marketplace for used industrial robots, robot parts, and manufacturing equipment. Providing quality industrial equipment at an affordable price, iGAM has helped manufacturers of all sizes with their automation goals. Keep your production line up and running with products and services from iGAM. From supplying Industrial Automation equipment to asset appraisals, iGAM aims to be the ultimate destination for every manufacturer’s industrial automation needs.

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