Robotic Safety

Compliance for robotic solutions

Robotic safety - are you compliant?

Industries worldwide are evolving towards the extensive use of automation and industrial robots to deliver process and system efficiencies. However, given that a system failure can carry severe consequences for both people and equipment, compliance with regional and international robot safety standards is becoming a key concern for suppliers and system integrators – many of whom are turning to specialists like TÜV SÜD to ensure compliance.

What is robotic safety?

The many commercial benefits of robotic automation are well documented, but they are not without risk. System failures involving industrial robots can have a drastic impact on the safety of employees, the protection of plant assets and, of course, continued operational performance. From integrating traditional manufacturing robots which work autonomously, to ensuring that collaborative robots (or cobots) work efficiently in a shared human-robot workspace, investing in third-party robot safety certification is rapidly becoming a prerequisite to market adoption.

Which robotic safety standards are relevant to your business?

As is the case for any industrial machinery, robots are subject to many different requirements relating to machinery, electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and radio equipment. To protect both the equipment and those using it, there have also been specific standards developed for stationary, collaborative and mobile robots, as well as for robot systems.

For example, ISO 10218 describes four separate robot-human collaborative operating modes to ensure that humans are not exposed to unacceptable risks. To satisfy these regulations, at least one of the following requirements must be fulfilled, in addition to a visual indication that the robot is in collaborative operation:

  • Safety-rated monitored stop: Robot stops when human enters collaborative space.
  • Hand-guiding: Robot motion is controlled by human hand.
  • Speed and separation monitoring: Robot maintains specified distance and speed.
  • Power and force limiting: Inherent design and controls limit impact at contact events.

Why invest in robotic safety certification?

Safety is a prerequisite for the use of any robotics, but did you know that many markets, such as Europe and North America, have individual sets of standards for robot safety? As such, it is widely accepted that demonstrating  third-party testing and certification of industrial robots is essential to achieving global market access.

Robot technology draws on a range of technical disciplines, which means ensuring the safety of industrial robots is an extensive exercise which requires multiple assessments, including mechanical safety, electrical safety and functional safety.

In addition to the geographical location of the robot at point of use, different compliance rules will also apply depending on the application, the interface used and the capabilities of the robot. These are all important considerations when selecting a certification partner that can support the future success of your equipment.

Demonstrate uncompromising standards

Offering fully certified, enhanced levels of product safety demonstrates compliance with industry standards and best practice processes for the protection of people, operations and equipment assets. Minimising risk with third-party testing and certification not only ensures global market access, but builds trust with existing and potential customers, through the reassurance of uncompromising standards.

How can TÜV SÜD help you meet robotic safety requirements?

Robot technology draws on a range of technical disciplines, which means ensuring the safety of a robotic solution. A leading certification body, TÜV SÜD offers a comprehensive portfolio of robotic safety testing throughout the product lifecycle,

Global recognition: TÜV SÜD offers a comprehensive portfolio of robotic safety testing, product certification and auditing services. Our highly-skilled team of machinery safety experts hold unrivalled knowledge of cutting-edge technologies including robotics, industrial connectivity and additive manufacturing, which means we are best placed to support your business in meeting the very latest robot safety standards.

Extensive experience: Supporting suppliers and system integrators throughout the product lifecycle, we are the robotic safety partner of choice for many market-leading organisations working from blueprint and installation through to operation and decommissioning.

Compliance for your business: The robotic safety standards landscape is both extensive and fragmented, with a range of ISO/IEC, EN, ANSI and UL standards applying either regionally or globally. Our knowledgeable team will work alongside your key decision makers to identify the right compliance levels for your business, your supply chain and your chosen markets.

Future-proofed: Industry 4.0 and the rise of the smart factory is driving change in robotic safety. This means navigating the most relevant robotic safety requirements is a complex and resource-intensive task. Appoint TÜV SÜD as your certification partner of choice and ensure compliance, not just for the markets you operate in now, but the ones you plan to penetrate in the future.

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