2016 Breaks Records for North American Robot Orders and Shipments ANN ARBOR, MI — The 2016 North American robotics market broke all-time records for orders and shipments, according to The Robotic Industries Association. During the year, 34,606 robots valued at approximately $1.9 billion were ordered in North America, representing growth of 10 percent in units over 2015. The automotive industry experienced another strong year with orders growing 17 percent. Units shipped to North American customers also grew by 10 percent, with 30,875 robots valued at $1.8 billion shipped in 2016. Shipments into the automotive market grew 25 percent relative to 2015. The fourth quarter of 2016 alone saw North American orders of 10,621 robots valued at $561 million, a growth rate of 18 percent in units ordered and 21 percent in revenue over the fourth quarter of 2015. Q4 shipments grew 33 percent on a unit basis with shipments of 8,825 robots valued at $494 million. “Automation played a vital role in spurring economic growth in North American manufacturing and services industries in 2016,” said Jeff Burnstein, president of A3. “We anticipate accelerated growth based on smarter, more connected and more collaborative robots in the coming years.” Orders for robots spiked 61 percent in assembly applications and increased 24 percent in spot welding. The food and consumer goods industry increased orders for robots by 32 percent in 2016. Robots in these industries can be used in a variety of functions, including improving food safety, performing repetitive primary packaging tasks such as bin picking, tray loading and bottle handling, and assisting with secondary packaging tasks such as case packing, bundling, bagging and palletizing. NORTH AMERICAN MACHINE VISION MARKET SETS NEW SALES RECORD IN 2016 ANN ARBOR,MI — North American sales of machine vision components and systems grew to $2.3 billion in 2016, its highest annual total on record, according to statistics issued by AIA. Total machine vision sales, which grew by one half of one percent, include sales of machine vision components and systems. The machine vision components category saw growth of one percent to $320 million in 2016. The leading growth categories for machine vision components in 2016 were cameras (3 percent), lighting (1 percent), and software (1 percent). The machine vision systems category was fl at in 2016 at $2.0 billion. Within machine vision systems, sales of smart cameras increased 13 percent to $326 million, while sales of application specific machine vision systems (ASMV) contracted by 2 percent to $1.6 billion. The machine vision market in North America performed particularly well in the fourth quarter of the year, driven largely by increasing sales in three major product markets, smart cameras, component cameras, and ASMV systems. More specifically, the smart camera market saw a 20 percent increase over the fourth quarter of 2015, marking its third consecutive quarter of year over year expansion. Similarly, component cameras and ASMV systems each grew by 17 percent over fourth quarter 2015. “Forty-seven percent of industry experts are expecting the market to continue its growth in the fi rst half of 2017, 43 percent believe sales will remain fl at, and 10 percent percent expect a contraction,” said Alex Shikany, AIA’s director of market analysis. “Regarding the largest category, machine vision systems, 46 percent of survey respondents believe the category will increase, 44 percent expect stagnation, and 10 percent expect a decline. Stronger optimism is present regarding vision component markets, where 57 percent think sales will increase, 36 percent are expecting sales to be fl at, and only seven percent expect declines.” “Vision and imaging technology is playing a key role in the next wave of industrial evolution,” said AIA President Jeff Burnstein. “In today’s world of connected manufacturing, the industrial internet of things, and cloud-based computing, vision technology is providing critical data to these advanced automation systems and driving productivity up for manufacturers of all sizes across the globe.” PEOPLE NEWS Princeton Infrared Technologies Inc., specialists in indium gallium arsenide imaging technology and affordable shortwave-infrared linescan cameras, visible-SWIR science cameras and 1-D and 2-D imaging arrays, announces the appointment of Bob Struthers to the position of director of sales and marketing. Struthers has over 35 years of experience in the photonics industry, beginning his career at EG&G, Reticon and Electro-Optics divisions, where he was directly involved with the company’s fi rst silicon (Si) and InGaAs photodetector product lines. He also served as vice president of sales and marketing at sensors unlimited for 15 years during their meteoric growth which included several mergers and acquisitions. “We are very pleased to have Bob join our team at Princeton IR Tech,” Princeton Infrared President Martin H. Ettenberg said. “Bob brings extensive experience in SWIR imaging technology and successful customer partnerships to us at an ideal time in our company’s growth.” “This is a really exciting time for Princeton IR Tech and I am very glad to be on board,” Struthers adds. “By utilizing a fabless manufacturing model, we are able to quickly innovate and enable new machine vision and spectroscopic applications in the SWIR band, typically at a lower cost than other SWIR cameras on today’s market. In addition, we are offering InGaAs devices with new performance attributes that improve upon many of the limitations in legacy products.” QVI (Quality Vision International) announced a series of key appointments in its manufacturing, operations and service organizations. Randy Weaver, CIO, assumes the additional position of director of the company’s electronics manufacturing group, which produces proprietary electronic and embedded control systems used in QVI metrology products. Prior to joining QVI, Weaver held a series of positions in both private sector and public sector operations and information systems and technology. Weaver earned an AS from Monroe Community College, a BSEE from Rochester Institute of Technology and an MBA from the Simon Business School at the University of Rochester. Wade Cook, PhD, vice president of optics manufacturing, assumes additional responsibilities as leader of the company’s research and development team. Cook joined QVI in 2016 after a 10-plus year career in the optics and photonics industries, having served as a project manager at ITT Space Systems Division, and engineering manager at ASE optics and Rochester Precision Optics. Cook earned his BS from the United States Military Academy at West Point, and his PhD from the University of Rochester. In addition to his civilian career, Cook served nine years of active duty in the U.S. Army and in the U.S. Army Reserve on active duty assignments in Bosnia and Afghanistan. Cook retired from the armed forces in 2016 with the rank of Colonel. William (Bill) Stickles is promoted to the position of director of production with responsibility for all standard product assembly operations at the QVI Hudson Avenue campus. Stickles joined the company in 2009, serving as regional sales manager for its OGP division, and director of its custom engineering group. Prior to joining QVI, Stickles held a variety of management positions in sales and marketing at Transcat. Stickles earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from State University of New York (SUNY Brockport) and an MS in business management from Nazareth College. Bob Scheidt assumes the position of president of quality vision services, the technical support, calibration and field service arm of QVI. Scheidt previously held the positions of VP of QVI Manufacturing and VP of QVI’s Global Supply Chain. Prior to joining QVI, Scheidt was employed in supply chain operations with Thermo Fisher Scientific, VWR Science Education, NexPress and Eastman Kodak. Scheidt has a BS degree in mechanical and industrial engineering from Clarkson University and an MBA from the Simon Business School at the University of Rochester. Keith Polidor, vice president, is promoted to the position of senior VP and chief operating officer, with responsibility for the company’s worldwide supply chain, manufacturing and quality functions. Polidor joined QVI in 2002, and has served in a variety of roles in manufacturing, quality, information systems and marketing. Prior to joining QVI, Polidor worked for Exergen Corporation in Watertown, MA, managing manufacturing activities on behalf of Philips DAP. Polidor earned a BA from Colgate University and an MBA from Rochester Institute of Technology. BUSINESS NEWS Navitar Canada Inc., a manufacturer of precision optical solutions, purchased PixeLINK, a developer of digital cameras for use in industrial, life science, and other advanced imaging applications. The acquisition allows Navitar Inc. to offer fully integrated end-to-end lens and camera imaging solutions to customers worldwide. Based in Ottawa, ON, Canada, PixeLINK manufactures, optimizes and integrates industrial cameras for machine vision applications and microscope cameras for life science and digital microscopy applications. “The addition of the PixeLINK business enables us to provide our Navitar core dealers and OEM customers in machine vision and life science a large range of visible spectrum camera solutions,” said Navitar President Michael Thomas. “Navitar recently added active alignment, assembly and testing of 4K OEM lens camera modules to our repertoire of services - combining Navitar large format, athermal, HDR lenses with Sony IMX CMOS sensors. Now our customers developing VR cameras, autonomous vehicles, drones and persistent surveillance systems will achieve unprecedented image quality with a Navitar lens, and they will benefit from decades of sensor integration expertise and industry-leading CMOS camera technology from PixeLINK.” PixeLINK is recognized around the world for its quality hardware, imaging software and customer service. Its USB 3.0 high speed cameras provide superb image quality and have consistently been rated as the most reliable industrial cameras in the market. Paul Saunders, president of PixeLINK, comments, “We are excited to add our cameras to Navitar’s large selection of imaging products. Current and new customers will benefit greatly from our integrated solution offerings.” Julian Goldstein and Jeremy Goldstein, owners of Navitar, comment, “We welcome the PixeLINK employees and customers to the Navitar network of companies and look forward to developing groundbreaking integrated camera and lens solutions optimized for the sharpest, cleanest images available in the industry.” MoviTHERM announced a U.S. distribution partnership with Italian Camera Enclosure Manufacturer TecnoVideo, S.R.L. TecnoVideo, located in Villaverla- Vicenza, Italy, specializes in the design and manufacture of stainless steel protective camera enclosures for harsh and hazardous environments. Available enclosures are suitable for visible, day/night cameras as well as a variety of thermal cameras. Camera enclosures manufactured for thermal cameras are equipped with exotic viewing glasses made from Germanium (GE) or Zinc Selenide (ZiSe) to allow for optimum transmission of mid-wave and long-wave thermal cameras. The range of enclosure sizes makes them ideally suitable for small, medium and large size cameras. The environmental protection offered spans from simple weatherproof, outdoor applications, air and water cooling to full explosion proof enclosures with ATEX certifications. MoviTHERM will expand on the enclosure offerings with the addition of purge and pressurization controllers for cost-effective hazardous location applications for Class 1/Div 1, Class 1/Div 2, Class 2/Div 1 and Class 2/Div 2 rated locations. “We are excited about this partnership,” said Markus Tarin, president and CEO. “Almost all industrial thermal monitoring applications require some form of protection for cameras. Finding the right camera enclosure for any particular camera model and environment can be a daunting and time consuming task. With our continued effort to offer value added products and services, we now have a complete line of camera enclosure solutions for just about any situation. Whether our customers are just looking to add an enclosure to their application, or acquiring a turnkey thermal imaging system from MoviTHERM, they can continue to rely on us for the right solution.” In addition to offering a complete lineup of high-quality camera enclosures, MoviTHERM also provides application consulting services to assist customers with selecting the right enclosure for their particular application. “We also offer integration services to assist customers with mounting their cameras into these enclosures,” added Markus Tarin. “There are a lot of things to consider, such as controlling a heater for the viewing glass, how to power the camera inside the enclosure, how to manage the camera’s connectivity to the outside, maybe adding a copper-to-fiber media converter for long cable runs or an internal temperature and moisture sensor. We even offer custom modification to the enclosure, if needed. That is where MoviTHERM is different. We look at how we can provide the most value to our customers with what we do and know best, so our customers can focus on their core business.”
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