The Massachusetts Robotics Revolution                   Inspiring innovation, driving growth              and competitiven...
Acknowledgements  The Mass Technology Leadership Council is grateful for the leadership and support that Governor Deval Pa...
ContentsAbout the Mass Robotics Cluster......................................................................................
About the Massachusetts    Robotics Cluster       The Massachusetts Robotics Cluster is a community of    interest within ...
engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), keepsthe talent pipeline flowing.  Innovations in electronics, hardw...
■■New Companies: Eighteen new start-up robotics                                  smart robotics investments. (Combined tot...
The Robotics IndustryDefining the Robotics IndustryA Transformative Technology Driving                                    ...
Robotics Value Proposition       Demographic trends globally reflect aging populations    that will require more services ...
State of Robotics in Massachusetts  A Tradition of Innovation                                                            M...
The Massachusetts Robotics cluster is a vibrant eco-system      of well-established robotics companies and young start-   ...
the Massachusetts economy, which is growing at 3%.          MassTLC Robotics Company               Survey Highlights      ...
Revolutionary Robotics Innovation    Research and Development: Powering the Massachusetts    Robotics Revolution      Mass...
High-Risk Research for Transformative                                                                           Breakthrou...
Artist rendering of the new UMass Lowell NERVE Center. The center will provide robotics companies and research institution...
Educating the Innovators and                                      ■■Tree-Climbing Robots to Detect Invasive InsectsLeaders...
New England Robotics RD Eco-System13
Massachusetts RD Programs                                     Harvard University                                          ...
MIT Sea Grant AUV Lab	                                            Advanced Technologies Lab     ■■MIT Sea Grant AUV Lab is...                           Dartmouth College        ...
Disruptive Robotics Innovation:     Driving Change in Many Industries     Tools for Tomorrow: Robots                      ...
Robotics is creating smarter tools for factory workers                                                                    ...
products sold to defense agencies are related to technology         Marine     and research. Massachusetts excels in the k...
Consumer                                                      Related and Supporting Industries  Massachusetts is well pos...
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
Masstlc robotics final_web (1)
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The MassTLC Robotics Cluster has grown dramatically in recent years, covering a broad spectrum of robotics companies, from large leaders that are selling successfully to consumer, industrial, and government markets to start-ups and early-stage companies that are launching exciting next-generation robotics products and systems.
Advanced robotics research and development (R&D) at ten leading Massachusetts research institutions is fueling the industry’s rapid growth. A phenomenal talent pool of highly skilled engineers graduating from the Commonwealth’s many world-class electrical, mechanical, and software engineering degree programs, including the country’s first-of-its-kind fully integrated undergraduate degree program in robotics engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), keeps the talent pipeline flowing.
Innovations in electronics, hardware, and components (such as sensors, motion controls, and vision systems) have enabled the development of entirely new kinds of specialized, smart automated products with military, commercial, medical, marine and consumer applications. Today, robots perform hazardous military missions and automate manufacturing and warehouse logistics; robotic-assisted devices perform noninvasive surgery and assist in physical rehabilitation; unmanned underwater vehicles are used for oceanographic survey and defense applications; and personal service robots make everyday life easier by mowing lawns and vacuum cleaning. Robots are intelligent tools for increasing productivity, creating high-value jobs for new applications, and enabling
workers to make industries more globally competitive. Nextgeneration robotics will be cheaper and easier to implement and operate, and they will work with people rather than substituting for people.
As new robotics applications emerge, new market opportunities will have an impact in industries that are strategic to the long-term competitiveness of the Massachusetts and U.S. economy, such as healthcare and life sciences, advanced manufacturing, defense and public safety, distribution and logistics, and marine surveillance. Massachusetts has the unique intellectual infrastructure, talent pool, entrepreneurial environment, and track record of success to claim its rightful place as the “Robotics Capital of the World.”

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Masstlc robotics final_web (1)

  1. 1. The Massachusetts Robotics Revolution Inspiring innovation, driving growth and competitiveness in leading industries
  2. 2. Acknowledgements The Mass Technology Leadership Council is grateful for the leadership and support that Governor Deval Patrick hasprovided to MassTLC’s Robotics Cluster and looks forward to working with him and our colleagues at The Innovation Instituteat the MassTech Collaborative to implement the key recommendations made in this report. This report and cluster initiatives would not be possible without the commitment and engagement of many talented leadersand volunteers in the Mass Technology Leadership Council’s Robotics Cluster. Cluster leaders include Co-chairs; Tom Ryden,COO and Founder, vGo Communications and Steve Kelly, President of Myomo. A special thanks to Mark Smithers, VPBusiness Development, Boston Engineering for his help with the robotics survey follow up. The council would also like to acknowledge the support of Pat Larkin and Bob Kispert of the MassTech Collaborative;Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP for their sponsorship of the Robotics Cluster; Kathleen Hagan ofHagan and Co. for managing the research for the report; Robotics Trends for their support; and MIT Sloan Fellows, AbdallahHussein Khamis, Ricardo Victorero, Adil Utembayev, Mohd Ridzwan Nordin and Harvard Business School student, SamerAbughannam, for sharing their Robotics Cluster Report completed for Dr. Michael Porter at the HarvardBusiness School. This report was funded by a grant from The Innovation Institute at the MassTech Collaborative. Front Cover Sources (clockwise starting at upper left) Waltham-based Boston Dynamics’ Big Dog robotic pack mule will accompany soldiers in terrain too rough for conventional vehicles. Baxter the robot developed by Boston-based Rethink Robotics will work alongside humans in industrial settings. Waltham-based Boston Engineering’s GhostSwimmer AUV, initially developed as a joint effort with Olin College in Needham, MA, mimics the motions of a tuna and is now being used for homeland security missions. BiOM® Ankle System by Bedford-based iWalk helps people move with a natural gait at their chosen speed.
  3. 3. ContentsAbout the Mass Robotics Cluster......................................................................................................................... 1Executive Summary....................................................................................................................................................... 1The Robotics Industry................................................................................................................................................. 4 Defining the Robotics Industry.............................................................................................................................................. 4 Types of Robots and Applications........................................................................................................................................ 5State of Robotics in Massachusetts. ................................................................................................................... 6 . Tradition of Innovation.......................................................................................................................................................... 6 Cluster Profile....................................................................................................................................................................... 6 Cluster Companies and Environment................................................................................................................................... 8 .Revolutionary Robotics Innovation..................................................................................................................... 9 . Research and Development Powering the Robotics Revolution............................................................................................ 9 Educating the Innovators and Leaders of the Future........................................................................................................... 12Disruptive Robotics Innovation Driving Change Across Many Industries......................................... 17Competitive Advantages of Massachusetts Robotics Industry............................................................. 21The Opportunity Tremendous Growth in the Global Marketplace...................................................... 23 Industrial Robot Market...................................................................................................................................................... 23 Professional and Personal Service Robot Market. .............................................................................................................. 24 .Leading the Robotics Revolution. ....................................................................................................................... 26 . “Investing in robotics is more than just money for research and development; it is a vehicle to transform American lives and revitalize the American economy. Indeed, we are at a critical juncture where we are seeing robotics transition from the laboratory to generate new businesses, create jobs and confront the important challenges facing our nation.” Helen Greiner, President, National Robotics Technology Consortium
  4. 4. About the Massachusetts Robotics Cluster The Massachusetts Robotics Cluster is a community of interest within the Mass Technology Leadership Council, Inc., (MassTLC), a nonprofit organization that accelerates innovation in companies that develop and deploy technology across industry sectors. MassTLC is the Commonwealth’s leading high technology organization, which represents 500 companies in Massachusetts. In 2005, MassTLC established the Robotics Cluster to bring together companies, institutions, and individuals engaged in robotics research, education, product design, and commercialization. The mission of the Massachusetts Waltham based Boston Engineering’s GhostSwimmer AUV, initially Robotics Cluster is threefold: developed as a joint effort with Olin College in Needham, MA, mimics the motions of a tuna and is now being used for homeland security missions. ■■to raise awareness nationally and globally about New England’s exciting robotics industry; Massachusetts robotics industry; established that it is indeed ■■to attract thought leaders and resources to support the a very dynamic and high potential sector; and confirmed that robotics industry; and Massachusetts is a global leader in robotics innovation. ■■to accelerate the growth of robotics by creating opportunities for new and existing companies. Executive Summary: The robotics industry is growing rapidly in Massachusetts The Robotics Revolution and the New England region and accelerating the adoption The MassTLC Robotics Cluster has grown dramatically in of “intelligent automation” across a broad range of recent years, covering a broad spectrum of robotics industries, including health care, life sciences, factory and companies, from large leaders that are selling successfully to lab automation, distribution and logistics, materials handling, consumer, industrial, and government markets to start-ups marine underwater mapping and surveillance, defense, and early-stage companies that are launching exciting transportation, consumer, education, and entertainment. next-generation robotics products and systems. In February 2009, MassTLC, with the support of the Advanced robotics research and development (R&D) at Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, published ten leading Massachusetts research institutions is fueling the a comprehensive report on the robotics industry in industry’s rapid growth. A phenomenal talent pool of highly Massachusetts, Achieving Global Leadership: A Roadmap for skilled engineers graduating from the Commonwealth’s many Robotics in Massachusetts. This was the first-ever analysis world-class electrical, mechanical, and software engineering of robotics in Massachusetts as a distinct and vibrant degree programs, including the country’s first-of-its-kind fully industry cluster. This report defined the make-up of the integrated undergraduate degree program in robotics Robotics Evolution 1400 B.C. Clepsydra 1495 da Vinci Knight 1801 Jacquard Loom Babylonians develop the clepsydra, a clock Leonardo da Vinci designs a clockwork knight that French silk weaver and inventor Joseph Marie Jacquard that measures time using the flow of water. will sit up, wave its arms, and move its head and jaw. invents an automated loom that is controlled by punch It is considered one of the first “robotic” It’s not certain whether the robot was ever built, but cards. Within a decade it is being mass-produced, and devices in history. the design may constitute the first humanoid robot. thousands are in use across Europe.1500 B.C. 0 1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500 1600 1700 1800 1900 322 B.C. Greek philosopher Aristotle writes: 1880s Vending Machines 1888 Vending Machines introduced in U.S. “If every tool, when ordered, or even of its own accord, The first commercial coin operated The Thomas Adams Gum Company Introduced the could do the work that befits it... then there would be no vending machine was introduced first vending machines to the United States. The need either of apprentices for the master workers or of in London in the early 1880s and it machines were installed on the elevated subway slaves for the lords.” dispensed post cards. platforms in New York City.1
  5. 5. engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), keepsthe talent pipeline flowing. Innovations in electronics, hardware, and components(such as sensors, motion controls, and vision systems) haveenabled the development of entirely new kinds of specialized,smart automated products with military, commercial, medical,marine and consumer applications. Today, robots performhazardous military missions and automate manufacturingand warehouse logistics; robotic-assisted devices performnoninvasive surgery and assist in physical rehabilitation;unmanned underwater vehicles are used for oceanographicsurvey and defense applications; and personal service robotsmake everyday life easier by mowing lawns andvacuum cleaning. Billerica, MA based Harvest Automation’s robots are designed to perform Robotics technology is revolutionary and disruptive. material handling tasks in unstructured, outdoor environments such as those typically found in commercial growing operations. The robots workRobots are intelligent tools for increasing productivity, safely alongside humans and require minimal training to operate, whilecreating high-value jobs for new applications, and enabling reducing production costs and improving productivity.workers to make industries more globally competitive. Next- robotics applications; andgeneration robotics will be cheaper and easier to implement ■■skilled supporting and related industries.and operate, and they will work with people rather thansubstituting for people. In the three years since the first Massachusetts Robotics As new robotics applications emerge, new market Report was released, there has been dramatic growth inopportunities will have an impact in industries that are both robotics R&D and business development instrategic to the long-term competitiveness of the Massachusetts Massachusetts. Recent industry research and the findingsand U.S. economy, such as healthcare and life sciences, of a 2012 MassTLC Robotics Cluster company surveyadvanced manufacturing, defense and public safety, identify a number of factors for, and indicators of, this recentdistribution and logistics, and marine surveillance. surge in growth: ■■New Research: There are now more than 35 distinct Massachusetts has the unique intellectual infrastructure,talent pool, entrepreneurial environment, and track record of robotics R&D programs and research projects at tensuccess to claim its rightful place as the “Robotics Capital of Massachusetts research institutions. (Eleven institutionsthe World.” The Commonwealth’s competitive advantage in including Brown University’s collaborative work withrobotics is firmly grounded in its: Massachusetts research institutions.) ■■More Investment: Venture capital investment in robotics ■■critical mass of world-class universities; start-ups in Massachusetts has increased from $17.6 million ■■cutting-edge robotics research and development; in 2008 to $52.4 million in 2011 and over $60 million in the ■■highly skilled workforce; first three quarters of 2012. ■■innovative companies producing and utilizing1913 Automated Assembly Lines 1941 Robotics Named and PredictedHenry Ford installs the world’s first moving conveyor Science fiction writer, Isaac Asimov, first uses the word “robotics”belt-based assembly line in his car factory. A Model to describe the technology of robots and predicts the rise of aT can be assembled in 93 minutes. powerful robot industry.1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 19501921 Capek’s Robota 1948 Modern Robotics Conceived 1948—49 Autonomous Machinery LaunchedCzech playwright Karl Capek popularizes the term Norbert Wiener, a professor at M.I.T., publishes British robotics pioneer William Grey Walter“robot” in a play called “R.U.R. (Rossums Universal his book, Cybernetics, which describes the creates autonomous machines called ElmerRobot).” The word comes from the Czech robota, concept of communications and control in and Elsie that mimic lifelike behavior with verywhich means drudgery or forced work. electronic, mechanical, and biological systems. simple circuitry
  6. 6. ■■New Companies: Eighteen new start-up robotics smart robotics investments. (Combined total: $855 million). companies have been launched since 2008 in MassTLC is proud to be a catalyst for the “robotics revolution” Massachusetts with applications in education, defense, in Massachusetts. This updated report provides a current medical/healthcare, life sciences, manufacturing, materials profile of the robotics economy in Massachusetts and the handling, logistics, and transportation. increasing role that “intelligent automation”1 is playing in the ■■New High Value Jobs: Employment has surged. Despite workplace, the factory, the lab, and the home. a severe economic recession, there has been an increase We stand in awe of the cutting-edge work of the of 1,050 new robotics jobs in New England in the past four Commonwealth’s many robotics researchers, engineers, years—900 in Massachusetts alone. entrepreneurial and corporate leaders, investors, and ■■High Growth Rates: Average annual revenue growth supporting companies, and their critical contribution to the rate in the robotics industry is currently an impressive 11% Massachusetts economy. MassTLC appreciates the time and (based on data gathered from 2008 to 2011). valuable volunteer efforts that the leadership and members of ■■More Fresh Talent: New highly educated and trained the Robotics Cluster contribute to our work. Their collective robotics engineers have joined the workforce of the robotics intelligence, skill, imagination, and energy have helped to economy, thanks to innovative undergraduate and graduate make the Cluster a key leader of the “robotics revolution” in robotics degree programs at Massachusetts institutions like Massachusetts. We also thank the MassTech Collaborative Worcester Polytechnic Institute and Olin College. for its ongoing support of the MassTLC Robotics Cluster, in particular for its support for this updated report on the state ■■Significant Corporate Acquisitions: The high-valuation of the industry. sales of two leading robotics firms, Hydroid and Kiva Systems, have confirmed the high return on investment for —Tom Hopcroft, CEO, Mass Technology Leadership Council, December, 2012 Developed by QinetiQ North America in Waltham, MA, TALON robots can be configured for specific tasks including the disposal of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), reconnaissance, the identification of hazardous material, combat engineering support, and assistance to police units engaged in SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) operations. Currently, 2,800 TALON robots are deployed around the world. 1959 Computer-Assisted Manufacturing – 1962 First Industrial Robotic Arm the MIT Robot Ashtray The first digitally operated programmable robotic arm — 1954 Universal Automation The Servomechanisms Laboratory at MIT the Unimate mechanical arm — is developed by George Connecticut industrial robotics pioneer demonstrates computer-assisted manufacturing. A Devol and commercialized by his colleague, Joseph George Devol files a patent for the first robotic milling machine creates a commemorative F. Engelberger. It is designed to complete repetitive or programmable robot and coins the ashtray for each attendee. dangerous tasks on a General Motors assembly line. term “universal automaton.” 1955 1957 1959 1961 1963 1965 1959 Birth of Artificial Intelligence 1961 First Mechanical Hand 1963 Artificial Robotic Arm Prosthesis John McCarthy and Marvin Minsky start the Heinrich Ernst develops the MH-1, The first artificial robotic arm to be controlled by a Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT. a computer - operated mechanical computer, The Rancho Arm, was designed as a hand at MIT. tool for the handicapped and its six joints gave it the flexibility of a human arm.3 1 For the purposes of this report the terms “robotics” and “intelligent automation” are used interchangeably
  7. 7. The Robotics IndustryDefining the Robotics IndustryA Transformative Technology Driving the capability to sense its environment and sometimes make decisions based on sensing.Change in Many Industries “Robotics is the science and technology of designing, Rapid advances in technology have facilitated the development of more useful, economical, and agile robotsmaking, and applying robots, including technology from and robotic-assisted devices in a wide range of industries.many contributing fields. A robot is a mechanical or virtual For example, advances in laser sensing, computer vision,artificial agent. It is usually an electrical mechanical system and autonomous navigation enable robots to quickly sensewhich, by its appearance or movements conveys, a sensethat it has intent or agency of its own. ” and react to environments. New software tools make it easier to integrate systems using different kinds of hardware. Also, —Encyclopedia of Science, McGraw-Hill decreases in the cost of processing power enable roboticists There are as many different working definitions of “robotics” to build networks of wireless robots that can work togetheras there are applications…from “automation with motion” as a “computers that move” (Michael Kuperstein, founder of “Robotics” is both a distinct industrial sector and anSymbus). There are “stationary robots” enabling technology for many industries.for factory and laboratory automation, “Robotics” is both Twenty-first century robotics providesand a new class of “mobile robots” for a technology toolkit for the integrationtransportation, distribution, and military a distinct industrial of advanced software, hardware,uses. There are also “sub-sea robots”for underwater surveillance and “medical sector and an electronics, and mechanical systems in exciting new ways, creating newrobots” for robotic-assisted surgery,rehabilitation, and home healthcare. enabling technology products, processes, and systems that bring intelligent automation into Robotic systems essentially involve the for many industries. the clinical setting, the factory, theintegration of electrical and mechanical laboratory, the warehouse, the battlefield,systems and hardware and software the underwater environment, the retailengineering to create a machine that can take independent setting, the classroom, the office, and the home.action with multiple degrees of motion and control, as well as1966 First Mobile RobotThe Artificial Intelligence Center at the Stanford Research Center 1978 Brooks Automation founded in Massachusettsbegins development of Shakey, the first mobile robot. It is endowed Brooks Automation develops first industrial robot forwith a limited ability to see and model its environment. semiconductor manufacturing.1965 1970 1972 1974 1976 19781969 Robots in Space 1973 Computer-Controlled Industrial Robot 1976 Robotic Space ProbesNASA successfully uses the latest in The first commercially available minicomputer- Robot arms are used on the Viking 1 andcomputing, robotic and space technology controlled industrial robot is developed by Richard 2 space probes with microcomputersto land Neil Armstrong on the moon. Hohn for Cincinnati Milacron Corporation. incorporated into their design.
  8. 8. Robotics Value Proposition Demographic trends globally reflect aging populations that will require more services with fewer people to provide them. Service robots have the potential to meet this social need. Also, global competition is driving demand for cost- effective, less labor-intensive technologies and business processes. Robotics is keeping the U.S. industry competitive through the development of “intelligent automation” of many manufacturing processes. Moreover, advanced robotics technology has created new products that provide precision and safety for specialized applications such as robotic- A precision five-axis edge grip robot from Brooks Automation, assisted surgery or field operations in difficult-to-access or Chelmsford, MA, transfers 300-mm semiconductor wafers from one dangerous locations such as underwater, on battlefields, or in processing cell to the next. hazardous terrain. Types of Robots and Applications Industrial Robots Stationary robots automate for a range of industries, including: automotive, chemical, food, machinery, pharmaceutical, manufacturing, heavy industry, semiconductor fabrication, and materials handling. Service Robots Mobile robots function autonomously or semi- autonomously, performing tasks in a variety of settings: ■■Professional Use (Business/Government) Defense, public safety/security, inspection systems, underwater systems, medical, distribution/logistics, materials handling, and facilities maintenance ■■Personal Use (Consumer/Home) Toys, home use (vacuums, lawnmowers, security), home The CorPath® 200 System provides procedure control from an health assistance, and assistive or rehabilitative devices. interventional cockpit, allowing for robotic-assisted placement of coronary guidewires and stent/balloon catheters. Components Elements of robotics systems include: sensors, actuators, controllers, vision systems, human-machine interface, software/hardware design/development, and systems integration. 1983 Reconnaissance Robots Deployed The Remote Reconnaissance Vehicle became the first vehicle to enter the basement of Three Mile Island after a nuclear meltdown in March 1979. This vehicle worked for four years to survey and clean the resulting waste. 1980 1982 1984 1986 1988 1990 1981 Zymark Founded in 1986 First Educational Robots 1989 Robot Takes First Steps Massachusetts LEGO and the MIT Media Lab collaborate to A walking robot named Genghis is unveiled by The first lab automation company in bring the first LEGO-based educational robotics the Mobile Robots Group at MIT. It becomes the world developed by products to market. known for the way it walks, popularly referred Massachusetts entrepreneurs. to as the “Genghis gait”.5
  9. 9. State of Robotics in Massachusetts A Tradition of Innovation Massachusetts Robotics Cluster Massachusetts companies have been leaders in robotics Profile: Building on a Tradition of for decades, pioneering numerous commercially Innovation and Growth successful products: “The Robotics Cluster’s exciting growth is a contemporary ■■First laboratory automation company in the world manifestation of Massachusetts’ and New England’s ■■First to develop and continued leader in ground robots to legendary Yankee Ingenuity. The investment community is support U.S. troops starting to recognize and understand this innovation and the ■■First behavior-based robots huge business potential of emerging robotics companies. ­ ” —Tom Hopcroft, CEO, MassTLC ■■First patient self-service robots in hospitals ■■Leader in healthcare for intelligent prosthetics MassTLC Robotics Growth Index ■■Leader in industrial robots for semiconductor 2008 2011 % Increase manufacturing Sales $1.3 B $1.9 B 45 ■■Leader in home-use robots such as vacuum cleaners, floor washers, and physical therapy Employment 2,300 3,200 39 Private Investment $17.7 M $52.4 M 200 ■■Leader in professional service robots for use in Dollars distribution/logistics, inventory management, and Private Investment 3 8 167 materials handling Deals ■■Leader in underwater robotics for oceanographic Exits $80 M $775 M (2012) 869 survey, defense, and security Note: Data based on 2012 survey. The 2008 revenue reported in 2012 survey surpasses data reported in 2008 and published in our 2009 report.1997 Mars Rover RobotThe Pathfinder Mission lands on Mars. Its robotic 1999 Robot Dog with Talent 2004 NASA’s Mars Exploration Programrover, Sojourner, rolls down a ramp and onto Martian Sony releases the first version of AIBO, a Twin Robot Geologists, Mars Explorationsoil in early July. It continues to broadcast data from robotic dog with the ability to learn, entertain, Rovers, land on Mars as part of a long-termthe Martian surface until September. and communicate with its owner. effort of robotic exploration of the red planet.1995 1997 1999 2001 2003 2005 1998 Robots Become the “It” Toy 2002 First Vacuum Cleaner Robot 2003 Robot Helicopter A fuzzy, batlike robot called Furby becomes the must- The Roomba robotic vacuum from the Seiko Epsom releases the smallest known have toy of the holiday season. The $30 toys seemingly iRobot is released. The frisbee-shaped robot, standing 7cm high and weighing just 10 “evolve” over time, first speaking in gibberish but soon device has sold over 3 million units to grams. The robot helicopter is intended to developing the use of preprogrammed English phrases. date, making it the most commercially be used as a “flying camera” during More than 27 million of the toys sell in a 12-month period. successful domestic robot in history. natural disasters.
  10. 10. The Massachusetts Robotics cluster is a vibrant eco-system of well-established robotics companies and young start- ups. There have been 18 new robotics start-ups created in Massachusetts since 2008. These new robotics ventures include spin-offs of successful Massachusetts robotics companies, such as iRobot, spin-outs from Massachusetts and New England research institutions, as well as some “robotics gurus in the garage” bringing technology innovations to market from other parts of the U.S. The Pioneer 3-AT, developed by Adept MobileRobots located in southern or the world. New Hampshire, is an all-purpose outdoor base, used for research and prototyping applications. Made up of close to 100 robotics companies and 10 research institutions (with over 35 different research educational robotics. The industry is experiencing another programs), the Massachusetts robotics cluster represents period of rapid growth. The MassTLC survey of the leading all segments of the robotics sector including: component robotics companies in Massachusetts confirmed company suppliers; manufacturers; developers of cutting-edge growth rates that ranged from 4% to 2900% over the past robotics systems for defense, marine, health care/assistive three years, with an overall industry growth rate of 45% (rates technology; industrial and lab automation; consumer; and based on sales revenue). Massachusetts Robotics Cluster Diversity n Agriculture n Consumer n Education n Entertainment n Enterprise n Industrial (Factory/Facility Automation, Lab Automation, Distribution/Logistics) n edical Healthcare (Medical/Surgical, Rehabilitation, Assistive Devices, M Healthcare Services) n Marine n Military/Defense n Public Safety n Transportation Data from 2012 MassTLC Robotics survey of companies. Companies were able to select more than one sector in which their technology is applied. 2006 Humanoid Robot for 2009 Acquisition of Hydroid Battlefield Extraction 2009–2012 Private and Hydroid, developer of autonomous 2012 Acquisition of Kiva Systems Vecna launches “The Bear” the most Corporate Investment in underwater vehicles and located in Kiva Systems, developer powerful humanoid robot in the Robotics Increases Rapidly Massachusetts is acquired by Norwegian of automated warehouse world. It is used in military conflicts $57 million in private investment marine electronics maker Kongsberg distribution systems and based in the Middle East to locate, lift and in early stage Massachusetts Maritime AS, a division of Kongsberg in Massachusetts, is acquired by extract people from harm’s way. robotics companies Gruppen AS, for $80 million. Amazon for $700 million. 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2012 2007 WPI Launches Degree 2008­ 2012 Rapid Robotics – 2012 Braingate2 establishes human brain robot interaction Worcester Polytechnic Institute Venture Formation. Dr. Leigh Hochberg (MGH/Harvard Medical School), Dr. John Donoghue starts the first integrated robotics Eighteen new robotics companies (Brown University), and the Veterans Administration develop a programs in the U.S. launched in or moved to Massachusetts transformative device connecting a patient’s brain motor-cortex directly to a robotic-assisted artificial limb. A paralyzed woman works a robotic arm with her thoughts to help herself to a cup of coffee.7
  11. 11. the Massachusetts economy, which is growing at 3%. MassTLC Robotics Company Survey Highlights MassTLC surveyed robotics companies across New England and found that the cluster is still populated with ■■ Sales exceed $1.9 Billion young companies; close to 40 companies have been in ■■ Over 3,200 people employed in Massachusetts existence for 10 years or less. The impact of these young companies on the Massachusetts robotics cluster is ■■ 60% of companies are less than 10 years old staggering with their annual revenue growth rate of 93% ■■ Over $200 million invested in robotics over the past 5 years between 2008 and 2011 and a projected growth of 96% ■■ 80% of respondents expect continued growth into 2013 between 2011 and 2012, these young Massachusetts companies now make up 8% of the total robotics revenue, ■■ 18 government grants awarded since 2008 up from 3% in 2008. ■■ Annual revenue growth between 2008 and 2011 is 11% The investment community has also taken greater interest in robotics, investing $209 million in MassachusettsCluster Companies and Environment robotics over the last 5 years. Private investment in the first three quarters of 2012 has already surpassed 2011 The Massachusetts robotics cluster continues to thrive and by $8 million. The success of publicly traded iRobot hasgrow with 11 new companies started since 2009 (18 new led to a new generation of start-ups by iRobot alumnicompanies since the 2008 MassTLC robotics survey). The (Harvest Automation, Rethink Robotics, CyPhy, and vGoNew England hub of innovation for the robotics industry has Communications), fueling the demand and developmentcommercialized robotic technologies for applications ranging for robotics talent, as well as, the dynamism of thefrom agriculture and transportation to prosthetics and robotics ecosystem.manufacturing. While the core group of robotics companiesin Massachusetts consists of close to 100 companies, the With the acquisition of Kiva Systems by Amazon for $775M,broader robotics ecosystem consists of over 200 companies, another wave of young robotics companies could be onmanufacturers, suppliers, design and engineering service the way. Kiva Systems alumni starting successful roboticsfirms, educational institutions, and research labs with companies here, along with the growing iRobot alumniinvolvement directly or indirectly in robotics. start-ups in Massachussetts could possibly create a cycle of innovation for robotics in New England, not yet seen anywhere All data in this report, unless noted, is from the 2012 else in the world.MassTLC survey of leading robotics companies in NewEngland. With a 50% response rate, the data provides a When local robotics CEOs were asked why their companiesreliable insight into the growth of the industry since 2008. were located in Massachusetts, they overwhelminglyThe respondents represented different robotics applications answered that access to local research, the deep talent rootsand varying company sizes. in mechanical and software engineering, and hardware and manufacturing resources were not replicable anywhere else. Today there are more than 3,200 people employed in the When faced with the decision to move their companies,Massachusetts robotics industry and annual sales exceed several indicated that they could not leave the infrastructure$1.9 billion. These figures do not include $1.5 billion in sales and talent pool here in Massachusetts.of New England–based companies, such as ABB systemsin Connecticut, and companies in New Hampshire and Massachusetts Private Investment in RoboticsRhode Island, such as Segway, Adept Mobile Robots, vGoCommunications, and Valde Systems, that are part of theextended Massachusetts robotics economy. From 2008 to 2011 the overall growth rate in revenueof robotics companies in Massachusetts is 45%, whichincludes maturing companies. This growth is particularlyremarkable as it occurred during a national and globalrecession of historic severity. Rapid rise of roboticsrepresents spectacular growth when compared with thenational economy, which is now growing at a 2% rate and Data from 2012 MassTLC Robotics survey. Massachusetts companies only are included in this chart.
  12. 12. Revolutionary Robotics Innovation Research and Development: Powering the Massachusetts Robotics Revolution Massachusetts is an internationally recognized robotics These diverse RD programs provide the intellectual center because it “has it all” for research and talent—from engine for robotics innovation and supply a highly skilled advanced research on next-generation robotics, to applied talent pool for the rapidly growing Massachusetts and programs and specialized undergraduate and graduate regional robotics economy. degree programs educating the best and the brightest Massachusetts has become a robotics hub for the world robotics engineers to be industry innovators and leaders in not only because of its world class robotics RD, but the 21st century. also because it is home to cutting-edge robotics product Massachusetts is home to a unique concentration of development expertise and has an entrepreneurial track academic centers of excellence in robotics education, record of bringing state-of-the-art robotics products research, and technology commercialization. Ten of the successfully to market. Commonwealth’s leading educational research institutions offer thirty-five distinct and exciting world-class research Game-Changing Printable Robots programs covering all aspects of robotics and “intelligent for Rapid Design and Manufacture of automation.” Brown University, just over the Massachusetts Customized Goods border in Providence, RI, has a collaborative relationship with Printable Programmable Machines Enable Anyone to Massachusetts institutions, contributing to the overall Manufacture a Customized Robot RD ecosystem. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is leading In addition, there are innovative robotics research programs an ambitious $10 million National Science Foundation at leading institutions throughout the six New England states, initiative to reinvent how robots are designed and produced. including: Brown University, Yale University, Dartmouth The “printable robots” project will democratize access to College, and the Universities of Vermont, New Hampshire, robotics by developing technology enabling the average Maine, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. Recent work in the Distributed Robotics Laboratory at MIT, Cambridge, MA, in collaboration with Harvard Microrobotics Laboratory, proposes a new method to systematize the development of 3-D robots using inexpensive, fast, and convenient planar fabrication processes. This new paradigm is called “printable robots.” This 6-legged tick-like printable robot could be used to check a basement for gas leaks or to play with a cat.9
  13. 13. High-Risk Research for Transformative Breakthroughs in Healthcare, Energy, and Manufacturing Harvard University’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, established in 2009, bases its robotics research on nature’s design principles to develop bio-inspired materials and devices that will transform medicine and create a more sustainable world. By emulating nature’s principles for self-organizing and self-regulating, Wyss Institute researchers are developing Researchers at the Harvard Wyss Institute, Cambridge, MA, have built a innovative robotics solutions for healthcare, energy, flexible robot that can crawl, adjust its gait, and squeeze under obstacles. architecture, and manufacturing. These technologies are translated into commercial products and therapies throughuser to design, customize, and print a specialized robot in a collaborations with clinical investigators, corporate alliances,matter of hours. and start-up companies. It currently takes years to design, program, and produce a Initial target applications include:functioning robot, and it is an extremely expensive process, ■■ io-inspired robots for construction Binvolving hardware and software design, machine learning and sustainabilityand vision, and advanced programming techniques. MIT’sresearch aims to automate the process of producing ■■ Robots that build bridges and structures autonomouslyfunctional 3-D robotic-enabled devices, allowing individual ■■ warms of flying insect robots to assist dwindling Susers to design and build functional robots from materials bee populationsas easily accessible as a sheet of paper. A printable robot ■■Bio-inspired robots for inspection and searchmight be made to play with a pet or to fetch small things for ■■ onformable robots for inspection of narrow tubes and Csomeone whose knee is in a cast and has limited mobility. pipes for medical and industrial applicationsPrintable robot technology could also be used to rapidly ■■ utonomous micro-robots for clinical diagnosis Adesign and prototype custom tooling for small and repairvolume manufacturing. ■■ istributed robots for search and rescue D How will this work? First, an individual will identify a ■■ ighly agile autonomous robots for Hhousehold problem that needs assistance, then he or she will environmental monitoringgo to a local printing store to select a blueprint from a libraryof robotic designs and customize an easy-to-use roboticdevice that can solve the problem. Within 24 hours, the robotwill be printed, assembled, fully programmed, and readyfor action. “ This research envisions a whole new way of thinkingabout the design and manufacturing of robots, and couldhave a profound impact on society,” says Dr. DanielaRus, Director of the MIT Computer Science and ArtificialIntelligence Lab (CSAIL). “We believe that it has the potentialto transform manufacturing and to democratize accessto robots. ” This robot fly, developed at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Cambridge, MA, is capable of lift off and made using layered micro-machined composite structures. With a tiny carbon-fiber body and wings made of thin plastic sheets, this robot was inspired by the way real insects move.
  14. 14. Artist rendering of the new UMass Lowell NERVE Center. The center will provide robotics companies and research institutions with a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) designed test course for year-round validation of robots and robotic systems. Collaborators include UMass Amherst and Tufts University. Worcester Polytechnic Institute and local robotics companies such as iRobot, QinetiQ, Black-I Robotics are likely to use the NERVE Center. ■■ obots that adapt and respond to changes R conduct robotics research, which will allow robot systems in environment under development to be tested more easily, quickly, and ■■ elf-balancing walkways and building structures S economically than they can be today. ■■Adaptive and responsive furniture The NERVE Center will increase knowledge about robotics ■■ eformable robots that conform, sense and locomote in D by developing metrics and standards for validating and complex terrains measuring progress in the field while allowing for convenient testing of robotic systems. The ability to rapidly cycle Scientists at the Wyss Institute are developing entirely new through prototyping, testing, and iterative improvements will types of robotic devices, such as tiny autonomous flying significantly speed up the process of translating robotics machines, literally shaped like houseflies, that could pollinate technology from the laboratory into real-world applications. crops while the causes of bee colony collapse are identified The facility will be used for the study and evaluation of and solved. The Bio inspired Robotics team is also studying robot systems in a number of areas, including: social insects for what they can teach about programming ■■autonomous systems cooperation and adaptation among individual robots and how global self-repair and adaptation can be achieved ■■small unmanned ground vehicles for military use, urban through simple local behaviors. search and rescue, and HAZMAT ■■assistive technologies UMass Lowell Launches New England’s ■■mobile manipulation First Robotics Testing Facility ■■human-robot interaction In 2012, the highly successful Robotics Lab at the University of Massachusetts Lowell established a state- of-the-art testing facility, the New England Robotics Validation and Experimentation (NERVE) Center, NERVE will facilitate development of robotic systems by both corporations and universities in Massachusetts and the New England region. UMass Lowell is collaborating with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the U.S. Army on the development of New England’s first comprehensive Developed by WPI undergraduate students, Prometheus is an robot testing site. The NERVE Center is within an hour’s unmanned ground vehicle in Worcester, MA. The project goal is to drive of over 50 robotics companies and 10 universities that secure an entry in the annual Intelligent Ground Vehicle Challenge (IGVC).11
  15. 15. Educating the Innovators and ■■Tree-Climbing Robots to Detect Invasive InsectsLeaders of the Future ■■A Rehabilitative Robotic Glove and a Human Hand Prosthesis Massachusetts higher education institutions offer dozens ■■Robots to Improve Communications Skills ofof advanced degree and certificate programs in electrical, Autistic Childrenmechanical, and software engineering that supply therobotics talent pool. Two recent examples of highly innovativeand focused robotics higher education programs are: Olin CollegeWorcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Olin College educates highly skilled robotics engineers In 2007, the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) launched through an innovative field-based undergraduate curriculum.the nation’s first fully integrated Bachelor of Science degree Seniors work in multi-disciplinary teams of five to sevenprogram in Robotics Engineering, which has already students on challenging, full-year robotics engineeringgraduated over 50 students. In 2009, WPI established an projects for partnering corporate sponsors.MS in Robotics Engineering and a PhD program in Robotics Since its launch in 2005, Olin’s Scope Program hasin 2010. Currently, 242 WPI undergraduates are majoring or deployed teams of engineering talent to more than 50minoring in robotics and 32 graduate students are enrolled in companies, developing and expanding on a range ofWPI’s Master’s and PhD programs in robotics. disciplines from creating robotics vehicles for the Army to improving medical devices for Boston Scientific Corporation. WPI students create robotic solutions to real world Olin’s robotics group is currently working in the areas ofproblems such as developing: unmanned ground, surface, and autonomous vehicles. ■■Search and Rescue Robots ■■A Machine Tool Robotics Part Manipulator MIT, Cambridge, MA, in partnership with Olin College, Needham, MA, and Draper Laboratory, Cambridge, MA, competed in the 2007 DARPA Grand Challenge, a competition for cars and trucks that run without human help.
  16. 16. New England Robotics RD Eco-System13
  17. 17. Massachusetts RD Programs Harvard University Robotics Lab, Division of Engineering andBoston University Applied Sciences Hybrid Networked Systems ■■The Harvard Division of Engineering Robotics Lab focuses■■Current application areas is networked mobile robotics. on micro-robotics, analog computation, choreography of dynamical systems, control of quantum systems, pattern Intelligent Mechatronics Lab generation, and robotic system identification.■■The Intelligent Mechatronics Lab specializes inmedical robotics, structural dynamics, and mobile robot Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineeringcommunications. ■■Wyss Institute’s research includes developing robotic tools Neuromorphics Lab for rehabilitation and surgical assistance as well as other innovative medical devices. Inspiration for these devices■■The Neuromorphics Lab studies biological intelligence comes from studying human biomechanics and collaborationand embeds the derived fundamental principles into bio- with practicing physicians. http://wyss.harvard.eduinspired computers and robots. Ongoing projects includeformal approaches to planning and control of robot motion MITand interactive approaches for robot navigation and control. Computer Science and Artificial Laboratory (CSAIL) Andersson Lab ■■CSAIL’s research focus includes: modular and self-■■Autonomous control of robots evolving in complex, real- reconfiguring robots, distributed algorithms and systemsworld settings and subject to such disturbances. Ongoing of self-organizing robots, networks of robots and sensorsprojects include formal approaches to planning and control for first-responders, mobile sensor networks, animals andof robot motion and interactive approaches for robot robots, cooperative underwater robotics, desktop robotics,navigation and control. and forming, moving, and navigating sparse 2D and BioRobotics Research Group 3D structures.■■The BioRobotics Research Group (BRG) specializesin medical robot and instrument design, development of Newman Lab for Biomechanicsimaging techniques for surgical guidance, modeling of ■■Part of the Mechanical Engineering department, thetool-tissue interaction, and tele-operation/automation of Newman Lab focuses on physical therapy devices.instrument motion. Human Adaptation Lab MIT Media Lab■■Sargent College studies robotic exoskeletons for use Personal Robots Groupin human gait rehabilitation. ■■Media Lab’s personal robotics research is on socially engaging robots and interactive technologies that provideBrandeis University people with long-term social and emotional support in order Computer Science Laboratory to live healthier lives, connect with others, and learn better.■■The Dynamical Evolutionary Machine Organization(DEMO) Lab is focused on machine learning: solving the Mechatronics Groupproblem of open-ended evolution in artificial media like ■■The Mechatronics Group research program seeks tosoftware and hardware. Long-term basic research on self- advance technologies that accelerate the merging of bodycreating robots couples the co-evolution of bodies and and machine, including device architectures that resemblebrains to commercial off-the-shelf automated fabrication the body’s musculoskeletal design, actuator technologiesand is known as the GOLEM project. that behave like muscle, and control methodologies that exploit principles of biological movement.
  18. 18. MIT Sea Grant AUV Lab Advanced Technologies Lab ■■MIT Sea Grant AUV Lab is dedicated to the development ■■Tufts also focuses on: mobile robot navigation, endoscopic and application of autonomous underwater vehicles. MIT surgery, and educational robots. Tufts Center for Engineering Sea Grant’s AUV Lab is a leading developer of advanced Educational Outreach works with teachers and schools unmanned marine robots. around the world in bringing robotics into the classroom as a way to teach math, science, and engineering. Northeastern University Marine Science Center Biomimetic Underwater Robot Program University of Massachusetts-Lowell ■■The N.U. Marine Science Center employs biomimetic Robotics Lab approaches to confer the adaptive capabilities of marine ■■The Lab focuses on human-robot interaction including: animal models to engineered devices. These devices interface design, robot autonomy, and computer vision. include: sensors, actuators, adaptive logic systems, and Applications include: assistive technology, search and electronic nervous systems. rescue. NERVE Testing Center Biomedical Mechatronics Lab (BML) Department of ■■New England Robotics Validation and Experimentation will Mechanical Industrial Engineering service other research programs and companies developing ■■The Biomedical Mechatronics Laboratory (BML) studies robotic systems in New England. the design, fabrication, control, and testing of novel robotic and mechatronic systems for rehabilitation and medical University of Massachusetts-Amherst applications. Laboratory for Perceptual Robotics ■■UMass-Amherst lab studies computational systems Olin College of Engineering that solve sensory and motor problems. Experimental ■■Olin educates future leaders in robotics through an platforms include sensor networks, mobile manipulators, innovative engineering education that bridges science and and integrated bimanual humanoids. http://www robotics. technology, enterprise, and society. Olin’s robotics group is currently working in the areas of unmanned ground, surface, and air vehicles. University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth ■■UMass Dartmouth engineering research includes the Tufts University study of advanced controls for robotics. Neuromechanics and Biomimetic Devices Laboratory ■■The Neuromechanics Lab focuses on “biomimetic soft-bodied robots” and incorporates biomaterials, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) neuromechanical controllers, and compliant microelectronics. WPI is the first U.S. educational institution to design and implement a fully integrated undergraduate robotics degree program. Human Robot Interaction Lab ■■WPI labs work on: intelligent vehicles, interventional ■■Researchers in the Human Robot Interaction Laboratory medicine, mobile manufacturing (for repair in accessible study affective control and evolution interactions between locations), robot learning, human-robot interaction, and affect and cognition; cognitive robotics for human- advanced manufacturing. robot interaction; embodied situated natural language interactions; multi-scale agent-based and cognitive modeling; and architecture development environments for complex robots. http://web..wpiedu/~rail/
  19. 19. Dartmouth College ■■Mechanics of locomotion and manipulation—robotWoods Hole Oceanographic Institute interface with the physical world. ■■Autonomous Underwater Vehicles University of Maine research-features/operation-robot/ The Massachusetts robotics ecosystem also benefits ■■Biomechanical Compliant Hand Project — prostheticgreatly from the research of leading independent nonprofit robot hand and rehabilitation devices.laboratories such as MITRE (, Draper Labs(, and MIT Lincoln Labs (, which University of Connecticut on engineering innovation in a range of advanced ■■Biomedical engineering laboratory.technologies including robotics. ■■Advanced lab for automation, robotics and manufacturing-control logic for dynamic systems.New England Robotics Research University of New Hampshire Brown University and www.brown- ■■Bionics Lab-applied ■■Robotics and vibration control. ■■Brown collaborates with Massachusetts General Hospital and the Veterans Administration as part of The BrainGate University of Rhode Island initiative, which is focused on developing neurotechnologies robotics/index.htm to restore the communication, mobility, and independence ■■Center for Automation and Robotics Research — expert of people with neurologic disease, injury, or limb loss. systems, neural nets and software development for effective Yale University design of novel mechanical devices. ■■GRAB Lab: Grasping and Manipulation, Rehabilitation University of Vermont Robotics, and Biomechanics Human-Machine Interface Lab ■■Incremental behavior integration for evolutionary robotics. Social Robotics Lab. Naval Undersea Warfare Center ■■Autonomous Underwater Vehicles http://www.navsea. The uBot-5, developed at the UMass Amherst Lab for Perceptual Robotics, is a small and lightweight research platform for mobile manipulation. It was designed to be an economical robot that is highly capable, durable, and safe to operate. It is well suited for environments designed for humans.
  20. 20. Disruptive Robotics Innovation: Driving Change in Many Industries Tools for Tomorrow: Robots Robotics in healthcare is reducing costs and improving patient outcomes along the continuum of care — from Working Side by Side with Workers robotic-assisted surgery to intelligent automation in the of the Future hospital and in the “healthy home.” Intelligent prosthetic and Massachusetts is an internationally recognized test- rehabilitation devices are dramatically improving the quality of bed for the world in robotics product innovation. The life for patients with disabilities and physical injuries. Commonwealth’s robotics industry develops and Massachusetts benefits greatly from its installed base of successfully sells a dazzling array of world-class teaching hospitals and products for a variety of industries “The Age of Robots is biomedical research institutes where that are strategic to the future of the healthcare innovation is both a driver Massachusetts economy. The robots upon us—extending and a beneficiary of advances in of the future will be intelligent tools for increasing productivity, creating independent living at robotics technology. Collaborative relationships between and among high-value jobs for new applications, home will ultimately turn the robotics research community, the and enabling workers to make entrepreneurial community, and local industries more globally competitive. out to be the ‘killer app’ healthcare leaders are accelerating “Intelligent automation” is disruptive the adoption of cutting-edge to many industries and offers exciting for robots.” robotics innovation in the competitive advantages to healthcare marketplace. new adopters. Colin Angle, Co-Founder and CEO, iRobot Massachusetts’ robotics innovators are already proving that the robots of the future will be different. Not only will next-generation robotics be cheaper Applications: and easier to implement and operate, but they will work with ■■Robotic-assisted surgical devices for image-guided and people rather than substituting for people. Robots will work non-invasive surgery side by side with people as co-workers in the office, co- ■■Rehabilitation in the hospital and in the home (e.g., producers in the factory, and household helpers in the home. intelligent prosthesis, smart rehabilitation devices, etc.) Healthcare, Medical, and Assistive Devices ■■Hospital automation (e.g., patient transport, patient self- “The ‘Age of Robots’ is upon us—extending independent service, couriers, pharmacy, etc.) ■■Patient-centered medical home (e.g., remote monitoring, living at home will ultimately turn out to be the ‘killer app’ for robots.” - Colin Angle, Co-Founder and CEO, iRobot medication management, etc.) Healthcare and medical robotics is in its early days, but ■■Assistive devices/ADA innovations in the smart home and already has shown great promise in addressing major in the healthy workplace healthcare challenges facing the U.S. healthcare delivery system.17
  21. 21. Robotics is creating smarter tools for factory workers that result in greater efficiency, labor savings, and higher productivity and create high-value skilled jobs. Massachusetts has a rich tradition in both stationary industrial robots for factory and lab automation and, more recently, in mobile service robots for warehouse, logistics, and materials handling automation. The world’s first lab automation company, Zymark, was launched in Massachusetts in 1981. Advanced lab automation has supported the rapid growth of the dynamic Life Sciences industry in Massachusetts and New England. Nashua, NH based VGo for Remote Students has opened up academic Local entrepreneurs are exploiting opportunities for and social environments to other disabled and immune-deficient disruptive change in supply chain management with exciting students as well. There are no longer boundaries between them and the world that was previously inaccessible. robotics solutions for warehouse automation, logistics and materials handling in a range of industries including food, retail and agriculture.Manufacturing and Lab AutomationDistribution and Logistics,Materials Handling “Robots will change how we think about manufacturing.They will have intelligence and awareness. They will beteachable, safe, and affordable. They will make us productivein ways we never imagined. Robots will reinvigorate industry and inject new life into theeconomy. Making businesses more competitive. Keepingjobs from moving overseas. Demonstrating the power of ”American ingenuity. - Rodney Brooks, Co-Founder, Symbotic, based in Wilmington, MA, offers warehouse automation withiRobot; Founder, Rethink Robotics (formerly the ability to sort, store, and distribute materials with high degrees ofHeartland Robotics) speed, accuracy, and customization. Their autonomous, mobile robot— the Matrix Rover™—can travel freely throughout the storage structure accessing any product, in any location, and at any time at a very high throughput rate delivering product in sequence to build stable, store- friendly pallets. Applications: ■■High-precision semi-conductor manufacturing automation ■■Lab compound, liquid and biological sample handling, measurement, and storage ■■ Factory assembly, fabrication, and production ■■ Warehouse automation: pick and place for logistics and distribution Inspection, packaging, and materials handling The Twister II Microplate Handler developed by Caliper Life Sciences, Defense, Security, and Surveillance in Hopkinton, MA, is a high capacity plate stacker and bench top lab automation robotics system. Over 1,000 Twister II units have been The defense industry is a vital sector in the Massachusetts shipped, making it an industry standard robotic plate mover for life economy. Massachusetts currently ranks fifth nationally in science automation. Department of Defense contract awards. Nine of the top ten
  22. 22. products sold to defense agencies are related to technology Marine and research. Massachusetts excels in the kind of highly Massachusetts is a global leader in Marine Sciences and specialized research and technology-related products and Technology for a range of applications including: education services that are expected to be an important focus of and research, geological mapping, intelligence, and defense spending in the future.2 surveillance. The vibrant Marine Robotics sector is supported Use of autonomous and semi-autonomous robots for by the world-class undersea research at the Woods Hole defense applications has grown dramatically around the Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) in Falmouth, Massachusetts, world in recent years as governments deploy them in and the MIT Center for Ocean Engineering. battlefield situations to take the place of, or assist, soldiers. Defense robots include: unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs), and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). The key drivers for the robotics market in defense, security, and surveillance include: the strong desire to prevent or reduce military casualties in the field of operations; changes in the tactics of warfare requiring new reconnaissance, combat and task equipment, and tools; the need to reduce military spending; and developments in the fields of materials science, computer programming, and sensing technology that help create more advanced robots.3 The Bluefin 12-S, shown here being launched in Quincy, MA, is a highly modular, flexible, autonomous underwater vehicle used for a variety of Applications: shallow-water applications such as search and salvage, oceanography, scientific research, mine countermeasures, and more. ■■Aerial and underwater surveillance ■■Hazardous military missions (searching caves and WHOI is a lead institution in a national $300 million National neutralizing IEDs) Science Foundation (NSF) Ocean Observatories Initiative ■■Transport of materials, supplies, and wounded soldiers (OOI). The OOI initiative will provide 25–30 years of sustained ■■Battlefield medicine (remote-medic, robotic-assisted ocean measurements to study climate variability, ocean monitoring and treatment) circulation and ecosystem dynamics, air-sea exchange, seafloor processes, and plate-scale geodynamics. Robotics ■■Automated Weapon Systems—unmanned aerial vehicles technologies developed in collaboration with WHOI will play a and unmanned ground vehicles; unmanned underwater vital part in the national Ocean Observatories Initiative. vehicles for intelligence gathering The leading global players in autonomous underwater ■■Public safety—fire and police search, seizure and vehicles (AUVs) for scientific, commercial, and defense rescue operations applications are all Massachusetts companies. Teledyne Public Safety and Municipal Services Benthos, Bluefin Robotics, Hydroid, Oceanserver, and iRobot, among others, continue to grow as AUVs are being Service robots also have proved to be of high value increasingly used for underwater exploration, mapping, in domestic public safety and security applications. and surveillance. Municipalities are increasingly using robots to support fire, emergency, police, and public safety personnel in dangerous situations and conditions. For decades, Massachusetts robots have been deployed to respond to world events including search and rescue operations after 9-11, evaluating oil plumes in the Gulf of Mexico, and most recently sending robots to Japan to assist in moving rubble as well as surveillance after the tsunami hit and Fukishima nuclear power plant disaster.19 2 Donahue Institute, Defense Industry in Mass, 2010 3 ABI Research
  23. 23. Consumer Related and Supporting Industries Massachusetts is well positioned to take advantage of the The Massachusetts robotics industry draws on a robustexplosive growth expected in personal robotics (personal array of local supporting industries that contribute to therobots, home robots, educational robots, smart toys and sector’s rapid growth including:hobby robots), having already developed commercially ■■Machine Visionsuccessful consumer robotics for home use. ■■Computer Software ■■Artificial Intelligence ■■Electronics Hardware/Manufacturing Services ■■Design and Systems Engineering Services ■■Component suppliers (sensors, actuators, controllers, vision systems, interface) ■■Precision Manufacturing The Roomba 780 is one of the popular autonomous cleaning devices from Bedford, Massachusetts-based iRobot. The Roomba celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2012.