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Inspiring North West manufacturers with remote robotics

Updated: Feb 4, 2023

The Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) North West has embraced the immense potential of robotic technology to boost manufacturing processes in the region with the introduction of a new virtual reality (VR) robotics showcase provided by Extend Robotics.

AMRC North West – a body led by the University of Sheffield – is a gateway development, built on the Samlesbury Aerospace Enterprise Zone using a £20m grant from the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Deal.

Their goal is to help the North West region’s manufacturing community access advanced technologies that will drive improvements in productivity, performance and quality.

The inclusion of our UR5e RoboKit and SenseKit module is designed to showcase the potential of cutting-edge, accessible robotics technology to inspire new approaches to manufacturing.

The purchase by AMRC was fulfilled as part of our inclusion in Universal Robot’s UR+ ecosystem, which provides access to more than 340 certified kits, components, grippers, software and safety accessories that seamlessly integrate with Universal Robot’s cobots.

The setup of the VR robotics technology took just one hour, with our unique software seamlessly integrating with AMRC’s existing robotics hardware.

Dr Chang Liu, founder and CEO of Extend Robotics, said:

“Our installation with AMRC demonstrates just how simple it can be to dramatically upgrade your robotics capabilities. In less than an hour we made it possible for their robotic arm to be remote operated from anywhere in the world.

“We hope this will inspire other manufacturers to explore how we can extend their capability using our technology.”

Aparajithan Sivanathan, Head of Digital Technology at AMRC North West, said:

“When introducing new technologies, accessibility is crucial.

“The speed and simplicity of this installation, coupled with the easy to use, intuitive VR controls means Extend Robotics’ solution has immense potential to upgrade manufacturers’ existing robotics.”

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