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During the first two industrial revolutions, mechanical engineering was promoted as a profession for machine design, construction, management, etc. The central body of knowledge has evolved to include the areas of knowledge of materials, mechanics, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, machine design, and manufacturing. Thus, it is the predecessor of all other forms of engineering and will continue to enrich it to conceptualize, design, build and manage more complex machines while enhancing complexity, flexibility, connectivity, automation, and intelligence.
The various technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution are now making the body of knowledge and professional practice of mechanical engineering more multidisciplinary compared to previous industrial revolutions. Some of these key technologies are AI, ML, IoT, Robots and Cobots, Big Data, 5G, augmented and virtual reality, 3D and 4D printing.
Machines with automation mechanisms have existed since prehistoric times. Animal traps were probably the first man-made machines to operate automatically as the animal passed. Today, automation engineers apply various technologies to simplify, improve, and automate manufacturing, electricity generation, warehouse distribution, mining, and many other processes to reduce the need for human intervention and increase efficiency.
According to the World Economic Forum’s 2020 report on the future of jobs, robotics and industrial automation are likely to be adopted by more than 60 percent of companies. A global survey conducted by McKinsey in October 2021 showed that 70% of global respondents say their companies have at least experimented with automation in one or more business units or functions.
Courses one can follow
Students who want to pursue a career in Automation and Robotic Engineering in India can choose from a variety of study options, including broad UG studies such as mechanical engineering, electronics engineering, computer science and engineering or specialized UG studies such as mechatronics, automation and robotics engineering, etc. .
Many universities also offer PG programs such as MTech. in Robotics, MTech in Automation and Robotics, MTech in Intelligent Systems and Robotics, MTech in Mechatronics, Ph.D. in Robotics, etc. Quality of the faculty. In many cases, a broad program with many courses related to automation and robotics can be better than some specialized programs.
What competencies are required?
Engineering students interested in this field should acquire sufficient skills while in college to build a bright career for themselves. In order to serve in the area, students must primarily develop the ability to conceptualize, design, implement and manage automation systems using principles of machine design, process control, mechatronics, cyber-physical systems, robotics, artificial intelligence, and state of the art components and tools.
It will be necessary to learn and take an interest in machine design, programming, embedded systems, IoT, mathematics, etc. Furthermore, every automation and robotics engineer should possess some core competencies – systems thinking, computational thinking, solving complex problems using – a multi-approach Disciplines, lifelong learning, communication, ability to work in a multidisciplinary team.
Job prospect and salary
Candidates with relevant educational background and project experience can work in the areas of system integration, application development, quality control, manufacturing, and research and development for robotics and other mechatronic systems. They can work as a robotics programmer, robotics design engineer, robotics systems engineer, robot testing engineer, or robotic product design engineer.
Globally, robotics engineering is an evolving job. Those with professional robotics engineering experience in a world of multiple job options. An automated engineer can find employment in manufacturing facilities, the automation industry, machine/auto manufacturers, research facilities, etc.
A large number of well-paid automation and robotics jobs are set to be in demand in India as well as abroad in the coming years. For example, according to reality, the current average annual salary of a robotics engineer is around $90,000, compared to the average annual salary of a software engineer in the United States.
According to several estimates, the average salary of a newer robotics engineer in India is around INR 5,000.
– Written by Dr. Sanjay Goel, Director of the Institute of Engineering and Technology, KK Lakshmipat University
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