Risk Assessment Part of Robot Safety Standard

Monday, April 30, 2012 @ 02:04 PM gHale

By Nicholas Sheble
There’s a new robot safety standard coming from the Robotic Industries Association (RIA).

The new R15.06 Robot Safety Standard will update ANSI/RIA R15.06-1999 Robot Safety Standard to reflect the changing times and corresponding technological advances.

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The differences between the 1999 standard and the 201x standard, said Jeff Fryman are, “Risk assessment is required. This is recognition that every robot system is different and has its own unique hazards.”

Fryman is the Director, Standards Development at Robotic Industries Association.

Other important differences address issues relating to controls performance, clearance, and barrier heights.

New terms and concepts – functional safety, performance level (PL), category – that were not part of the safety dialogue in 1999 are in the revised version.

Manufacturers have already started producing robots that are compliant. Users and integrators now must consider guidelines that harmonize with ISO.

Click here to see Fox’s presentation and discussion.

Scroll down to the webinar titled “Robot Safety Awareness.” You’ll have to register to watch the broadcast, but it is complimentary.

RIA also promised a Webinar this past Wednesday 25 April 2012 on the same topic to be broadcast by Siemens (who also sponsored Fryman’s above webcast).

Roberta Nelson Shea, who represents the RIA, outlined her presentation: “The number of robots has grown in U.S. manufacturing and robot safety standards have increased in importance. With robots handling more functions, including assembly, welding, machine tool load and unload functions, material handling, and painting, ensuring personnel protection of increasing complex automation is needed more than ever.

“According to OSHA, many accidents happen during non-routine operating conditions, such as programming, testing, setup, adjustment, and maintenance. Often a worker is within a machine’s hazard area where unintended operations could result in injuries.”

Her webinar aims to help users and integrators better understand and prepare for the upcoming changes to R15.06-1999 Robot Safety Standard, whose guidelines will be harmonized with ISO 10218 parts 1 and 2.

Siemens will soon post this presentation to its archives.

Nicholas Sheble (nsheble@isssource.com) is an engineering writer and technical editor in Raleigh, NC.

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