Robots are one of the important technologies for automated product, and they play a key role in the concept of Industry 4.0 and smart manufacturing.  Studies from Fuji Keizai pointed out that the global market for robots used in manufacturing is estimated to reach 2.3 trillion yen in 2025.   In smart manufacturing and the related applications, AI, and collaborative production between robots and humans will be future trends.  Smart robots' demand increases the quickest in the Asia-Pacific region because all major industrial and service applications are mainly concentrated here.

In order to help the domestic manufacturing industry adopt the use of robots and accelerate industry transformation, excellent research results involving smart manufacturing technologies from the member universities of the Global Research & Industry Alliance and outstanding startup teams are selected to have the opportunity connecting to the international market.

The Global Research & Industry Alliance under the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Japan Embedded Systems Technology Association (JASA) jointly organized "The Future Coexisting With Humans: Trends of AI Robots and Smart Manufacturing" event and invited experts from the two countries for exchanges and speeches.

Chair and Distinguished Professor Ren-Chuang Lo from the Department of Electrical Engineering at National Taiwan University introduced the concept of how the AIoT and robots can lead Taiwan's smart manufacturing industry to develop new opportunities and talked about the expectations of academic researches linking to the industry and other insights on AIoT and smart manufacturing industry. 

Mr. Sam Shen, a senior industry consultant of the Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC) explained the process and threshold for the manufacturing industry incorporating new technologies.  He also offered analysis and recommendations on business models to startup teams from his perspectives as an investor with years of experience operating a venture capital funds organization to help startups.

President Yasuo Kawabata of aKtivevision Ltd. in Japan has managed startups at KDDI and other large Japanese enterprises for years.   He provides his experience with the supply and demand in the Japanese market for startups to think about their new applications and prospects for the future market scale, and he also brings up key points regarding the communication and proposal between the businesses in Japan and Taiwan. 

He discusses the roles Taiwanese and Japanese companies can play concerning the AI and robot market, which can help Taiwanese startups find new opportunities entering the market in Japan.

TRON Industrial Technology is one of the companies selected by Chung Yuan Christian University, a member of the Global Research & Industry Alliance. The company provides the Smart Manufacturing Software Platform INGO, a block design platform aiming to help non-professional technicians accelerate their development of production line systems. 

Moldintel digitizes the accumulated knowledge of experts engaging in plastic injection molding and shares the production experience via the cloud.  This approach readily resolves sudden malfunction issues in traditional manufacturing. It provides recommendations on the configuration of injection molding machines of various brands and tooling to help the manufacturing industry systematize experience.

Feng Chia University is relatively new to the Alliance, but it has already had about 160 cases of technology transfers so far.  Its strength is in AI applications in smart manufacturing and automobiles.  SoC Lab provides an automatic labeling tool, iLabel, to solve issues related to the AI used in deep learning; it can automatically apply labels to selected targets, serving as a time-saving visualization tool for experts doing labeling work.   It also provides iEvaluate, a validation tool for AI models, to enable developers to validate their algorithms' performance.

DeepWave from National Taiwan University announced itsAI solutions to acoustic recognition, which can alert technicians in advance to perform maintenance work to prevent malfunctions when machinery makes abnormal noises, which can effectively prevent huge losses caused by machine stoppage.

Professor Yu-Jen Wang and his team from National Sun Yat-Sen University developed key technology for 6-axis force-torque sensors used in robots and precision machinery, which effectively reduces the production cost of sensors.  The technology has been transferred to selected domestic companies to improve the foundation of key technologies used in Taiwan's industry.

GTA Robotics from the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology offers interdisciplinary teaching materials based on humanoid robot learning tools.  Appropriate curriculums are planned according to different age groups, which upgrades schools' technological learning tools.  Curriculums adopting humanoid robots also meet the requirements of digital manufacturing curriculums, and they can be extended to 5C and contribute to the development of STEAM education.

The event was broadcast online on Japan's embedded ET/IoT platform on December 3.  It helped Taiwan's academia promote the advanced technologies it develops to the industry, further creating a bridge between them to explore more business opportunities in the Japanese market. 《Webinar link》