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Robotic capabilities to get big boost

Fan Feifei
Updated: Sep 28,2015 7:31 AM     China Daily

A robot on display at an expo in Beijing in July.[Photo by Zouhong/China Daily]

The Beijing municipal people’s government is looking to harness its strengths in intelligent robotic technologies to make the region a powerhouse in technology innovation.

According to a plan issued by the Beijing Municipal Science & Technology Commission in June, Beijing will utilize its technology and innovation strengths in robotics to promote industrial transformation and upgrading.

The main goal is to master a batch of international cutting-edge and core technologies and manufacturing techniques, develop key components and form a perfect technology innovation system of intelligent robots by 2020, to support the synergetic and innovative development of Beijing’s intelligent robotics industry.

The State Council has unveiled the “Made in China 2025” plan, which seeks to transform China from a manufacturing giant into a global manufacturing power.

The plan focuses on setting up a manufacturing innovation center and boosting intelligent manufacturing. It states that the robotics industry is a key area in the development of China’s manufacturing industry.

Robotics is the core of intelligent manufacturing, and China has already embraced the technology in a big way. At present, China has more than 500 robotics companies.

Beijing has already achieved the world’s most advanced level in humanoid robots, formal verification of operating system and other key robotic technologies.

It is already a leader in specialized robots and medical health service robots in China and has a complete and intelligent robot innovation chain in place, ranging from research to production.

Based on the Beijing plan, structural design, operating system, artificial intelligence, key components, safety and reliability and other key technologies in robotics are expected to see renewed impetus.

Packaging techniques for intelligent robots and equipment and integration levels in automatic production line system will also be improved.

Wang Tianmiao, director of the robotics institute at Beihang University, said: “Beijing has an advantage in developing service robots and we should focus on basic research including human-machine co-fusion, intelligence and safety ... strengthen international cooperation of intelligent robots and the establishment of an industrial design and manufacturing center.”

At the same time, the capital will also promote the application of service robots, including dedicated service robots and home-service robots.

Robots will also “take up positions” in logistics, rescue, custody, medical treatment, elderly care and rehabilitation industries by forming three to five robot industry demonstration bases gradually.

Furthermore, universities, research institutes and enterprises will be encouraged to use their own resources to build three to five technology innovation service platforms for intelligent robots and promote international technological breakthroughs in medical and health services.

What is more, up to five industrial clusters for robots with distinctive features will be set up in the Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei region.

Officials from the Beijing Municipal Science & Technology Commission said technology innovation and transformation of intelligent robots will boost the automation, networking and intelligence capabilities of manufacturing equipment and enhance overall manufacturing strength.