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Review: KUKA at automatica 2023

Keep on Moving for a changing world: This motto accompanied KUKA at automatica 2023. After four days of the trade fair in Munich, the organizers have presented their final report: Around 40,000 visitors from some 88 nations were on the fairgrounds to find out about new products from the 650 exhibitors from 34 countries. A brief review of the KUKA highlights at automatica 2023.

Guest author
5 July 2023
Reading Time: 3 min.

By Charlotte Engels

The automatica trade fair has been held in Munich since 2004. Since then, KUKA has been a regular guest on the trade fair floor - this year present on site for the 10th time, once virtually during the COVID pandemic. This year, it made sense to take the KUKA anniversary motto "Keep on Moving" for the company's 125th anniversary to the trade fair as well. Whether in the KUKA Dome, in the Mobility Area or with the KUKA Cobots - "Keep on Moving" was present at the KUKA booth. 

All KUKA highlights from automatica 2023 in a video: How KUKA pays attention to the three trend topics of automatica "Sustainable Production", "Future of Work" and "Digitization".

KUKA Innovation Award 2023 goes to Italy

automatica was not only a highlight for all exhibiting companies, but also for the three teams from Italy, Austria and Germany that competed for the KUKA Innovation Award 2023. The competition offered participants the opportunity to use the newly launched iiQKA robot operating system in conjunction with the Cobot LBR iisy and to implement their own hardware and software enhancements in their ideas as part of the "Open Platform Challenge".

At the fair, the teams had the opportunity to showcase themselves and their solutions before the winning team was announced on Thursday. Team JARVIS from Italy was named the winner by the jury and was delighted to receive €20,000 in prize money, which they can now use to further develop their solution. Together with the integration of Artificial Intelligence into the new KUKA Ecosystem "Robotic Republic", Team JARVIS' concept allows unskilled operators to instruct the robot for a new task and generalize to unknown situations, including new tasks and product variants.

Winner of the KUKA Innovation Award 2023: Team JARVIS, Politecnico di Milano, Italy

System engineering know-how in the exhibition hall for the first time: The KUKA Dome 

Immersion in large production lines from KUKA was one of the main attractions at automatica 2023. 

At the trade fair in the production hall: in the KUKA Dome, KUKA shows what is possible in large-scale plant engineering.

Visitors were immersed in a 360-degree experience as if in virtual reality. With the KUKA Dome, KUKA demonstrated in a very small space what is currently possible in global large-scale system engineering. Visitors traveled virtually to Toledo, Ohio, to the KUKA Toledo Production Operations (KTPO), experienced state-of-the-art battery production or a brand-new system for automated modular home construction. This application will continue to be used after the trade fair: in the future, KUKA customers will be able to experience their plant in advance as a digital twin. 

This is how KUKA paid attention to the trend topics

This year, the focus during automatica was on three topics: sustainable production, the future of work and digitization. 

Sustainable management is one of the most pressing tasks of our time: Robots and automated systems have a huge leverage.

The flagship robot when it comes to energy efficiency: the KR QUANTEC, which consumes up to 60% less energy than the previous generation. 

Automation for everyone: With cobots and the digital KUKA Services, robotics becomes easily and quickly available to everyone.

Future of work: Cobots are generally regarded as a work tool that will help future generations of employees and support them in their everyday work - whether in medium-sized companies or even in craft businesses. For the first time, KUKA also presented the mobile cobot KMR iisy to the public.

KUKA enabled booth visitors at automatica 2023 to take a journey through the diverse and multifaceted world of automation. The Customer Journey consisted of six stations, each representing a specific phase of the customer journey and presenting suitable digital KUKA products and services. The focus was particularly on the topics of digital transformation and the resulting customer benefits. The interaction of software and hardware was demonstrated live using the bin-picking cell as an example. 

From the robot configurator to online shopping: KUKA showed the customer journey at automatica 2023.

The photo shows the first station of the Customer Journey. Here, trade fair visitors were able to experience and try out the topics of Digital Twin, virtual commissioning and offline programming live with the aid of robots made of clamping modules and the KR C5. They were also able to use KUKA.MixedReality to check the safety configuration of their cell directly via a mobile device in augmented reality.

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