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This was 2023: A look back at the KUKA year

On stage with world stars, new technologies in unusual areas - and a very special birthday: we look back on an eventful 2023.

Teresa Scheunert
27 December 2023
Reading Time: 5 min.


KUKA presents the new KR FORTEC ultra family, setting new standards in the heavy payload range from 480 to 800 kg. The new robot family meets the new requirements of electromobility in particular. KUKA is also expanding its range of mobile platforms with the new generation of the KMP 600-S diffDrive


Congratulations: KUKA friction welding machine wins the German Design Award 2023: The newly developed KUKA Invictus 150 rotary friction welding machine impresses the jury with its shape and color design as well as sustainability


On tour with a world star: ten KUKA robots, which move oversized LED screens, accompany the Belgian singer and artist Stromae on his European tour. Here you can see the spectacular stage design and the whole story behind it:

Germany's best computer science trainee comes from KUKA: Tamara Muras wins her final exam against around 7,000 computer science trainees and is named the best in her profession in Germany.

Sustainable production with KUKA: KUKA is designing a CO2-neutral assembly system for battery systems for automotive supplier Valmet Automotive in Uusikaupunki, Western Finland. With this system, Valmet Automotive will set new standards in terms of energy efficiency and is relying on the expertise of KUKA Systems. 


Keep on Moving! KUKA celebrates its 125th birthday and kicks off its anniversary year. In 1898, Johann Joseph Keller and Jakob Knappich founded an acetylene gas plant for street lighting, laying the foundation for an international technology group – 125 years later, KUKA is helping to shape the working world of the future worldwide. In the coming months, KUKA will be celebrating this special birthday and numerous anniversaries of KUKA locations worldwide with events and activities for employees, customers, partners and the public.


Shortage of skilled workers, difficult delivery conditions and high energy costs: SMEs are struggling with major challenges. According to a global survey by the Manpower Group, 75% of all German entrepreneurs said they had difficulty filling positions. The use of industrial robots is intended to provide a remedy.


KUKA is making automation easily available to more and more industries, whether in the skilled trades, SMEs or battery pack production. At the automatica trade fair  at the end of June, KUKA demonstrates how robots and system concepts are evolving to make a lasting impact on a changing world. At automatica, the finalists of the Innovation Award also present their concepts for simple automation for small and medium-sized companies. In the end, the Italian research team JARVIS convinced the jury with their concept for robotics and AI and won the €20,000 Innovation Award.


KUKA sells Automation Integration division in Obernburg: At the end of June, KUKA signs an agreement to sell the KUKA Industries Obernburg division, which integrates robot-based solutions.

Opening of KUKA Australia: The grand opening and partner day of KUKA Australia successfully took place on June 14 and 15, 2023 at the new office in Rowville, Victoria, Melbourne:


Innovative technologies for minimally invasive surgery and gentler patient treatment: KUKA and Siemens Healthineers are further expanding their long-standing partnership. In 2023 and next year, KUKA will supply 300 robots for the medical technology manufacturer's ARTIS pheno angiography system.

Artificial intelligence and sustainability: KUKA and Swisslog support the United Nations' "AI for Good" initiative: In July, around 3,500 guests, AI innovators, startups and renowned speakers will meet here for the Global Summit in Geneva. The aim of the initiative, which was founded in 2017, is to create AI-based solutions that contribute to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals.


Making a virtue out of necessity: That is the philosophy of Italian dentist and entrepreneur Giorgio Castagno. In his practice, a KUKA robot cleans dental instruments – saving time and money and taking the pressure off the entire practice team. A summer visit.


New production standard for the construction industry: robotics and automation are helping to build homes more sustainably, cost-effectively and quickly. KUKA and GROPYUS are jointly building a fully automated production facility for the construction of apartments in Southern Germany. Around 3,500 residential units can be built each year with the help of 45 robots, 12 AGVs and a flexible system from KUKA.


Swisslog appoints Jens Schmale as new Chief Executive Officer: Jens Schmale will become the new CEO of Swisslog in January, succeeding Antonio Trioschi, who has announced his imminent retirement. Giulia Colombi will take over the management of the EMEA region.

Exciting content about robotics and the like is well received: More and more followers are interested in KUKA on social media. A total of 1.5 million people follow KUKA on platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, X and Facebook - and in October, KUKA cracked the 500,000 followers mark on LinkedIn. Got curious? Simply click on "follow" and immerse yourself in the world of automation!


An automated storage system and SynQ software from Swisslog ensure greater transparency and quality in the new milk processing plant of the Walmart retail group in Georgia, USA. The automation solution is intended to enable a seamless material flow and increase the plant's uptime.

A special project for the 125th anniversary: together with the world-famous Augsburger Puppenkiste puppet theater, KUKA has built a mobile show cell in which two robots take over the work of the puppeteers. The creative collaboration also shows why KUKA has become the #HomeofRobotics since the first electrically powered industrial robot.


The global robotics industry meets at Japan's robot trade fair iRex to showcase the latest trends and tricks. This year's stars are collaborative robots that can work together with humans – including, of course, KUKA.

The anniversary year is coming to an end – but our "Keep on moving" spirit lives on, of course. Anyone who wants to keep the KUKA anniversary song in their ears can download the song from over 20 global music platforms since the beginning of December. In "Keep on Moving", soul-pop artist Pat Lawson and reggae sensation Sara Lugo combine a mixture of soulful beats and reggae rhythms


And with this song in our ears, we say goodbye for this year and wish you, dear readers, a happy new year! 

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