May 23, 2013
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has approved a new U.S. national robot safety standard. Developed by Robotic Industries Association (RIA), Ann Arbor, Mich., the ANSI/RIA R15.06-2012 standard has been updated for the first time since 1999 and now is harmonized with the ISO 10218:2011 standard for robot manufacturers and integrators.
The adoption of the international standard allows systems designed and built in one country to be freely moved to other countries while maintaining compliance with safety regulations. A key feature in the standard is collaborative operation, which is the introduction of a worker to the loop of active interaction during automatic robot operation. Systems can be designed for the operator to load and unload the robot directly or drive the robot manually to a selected location, eliminating the need for fixtures.