The global clean room robot market (including prices of peripherals, software, and system engineering) size is projected to grow from USD 4.8 billion in 2020 to USD 8.5 billion by 2025; it is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12.0% during the forecast period. One of the major drivers contributing to the market size is companies endeavoring to replace humans in clean room environments by clean room robots as contamination caused by humans is unpredictable. A worker is capable of shedding 600,000 particles of skin per hour, which can also contain several micro-organisms, which is strictly unacceptable in industries such as pharmaceuticals and food & beverages. Companies also aim to reduce personnel on the floor so as not to be blindsided by situations like COVID-19 in the future which cause a shortage of labor.
Although the clean room robot market is growing at a swift pace, it is increasingly competitive owing to the emergence of new, regional players such as Techman Robot (Taiwan) and Rethink Robotics (US) entering the market, as well as major players launching new products and expanding to new regions. Key strategies adopted by these players to enhance their product portfolios, increase their market share, and expand their presence in the market mainly include product launches, partnerships and collaborations. In January 2020, FANUC (Japan) partnered with Soft Robotics (France) to expand into the food industry. Soft Robotics manufactures gripping machines for the food industry, taking into consideration shape variability and fragility in the industry. In July 2018, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation’s (Japan) subsidiary in China collaborated with the Instrumentation Technology and Economy Institute (China) to support the Made in China 2025 program. In January 2019, NACHI-FUJUKOSHI (Japan) launched the ultracompact robot model MZ01 designed to meet space-saving demands in the electric machinery, electronics, and EMS fields for applications that involve the handling of small component workpieces weighing around 100 g. MZ01 is ISO Class 5 certified and is suitable for clean room applications.
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The automotive industry accounts for half of the revenue source of KUKA. For instance, around half of the robots currently deployed in Volkswagen (Germany) manufacturing plants within Germany are from KUKA. The company can use this expertise and expand into the aerospace industry with its clean room robots. The company expects significant growth for clean room robots in the electronics industry in the future. KUKA offers ISO Class 2 rated clean room robots, which are offered by a very few companies. The company has a strong position in the European market. However, it is expected to expand in the North American and APAC regions, especially China. Midea Group (China), as a majority shareholder of KUKA, is expected to further facilitate the company’s entry into the Chinese market.
Even with the uncertainty of various external environmental factors, such as trade wars and foreign exchange rate fluctuations, FANUC has set its goals on long-term growth. In 2017, the company started operation of its FIELD (FANUC Intelligent Edge Link and Drive System) system in response to the requirement for connected systems for coordinated automation tasks and predictive maintenance. It is an open IoT platform which also integrates and connects both CNC machines and industrial robots. For long-term growth, the company also aims to increase its R&D capabilities as well as boost production capacity worldwide. The company remains committed to its key strengths—to minimize downtime for customers and continue to design products which are reliable and easy to repair. The company can make its clean room robots more lucrative by getting them certified for ISO Class 1 and 2 ratings and making them cost effective by making only certain parts of the robot which are clean room compliant.
Clean Room Robot Market with COVID-19 Impact Analysis by Type (Articulated, SCARA, Collaborative Robots), End User (Aerospace, Electrical & Electronics, Food & Beverage), Component (Robotic Arm, End Effector), and Region - Global Forecast to 2025
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