As CNC Robotics expanded its business, the two companies worked together with a growing number of customers. The combination of the robotics knowledge of Jason and his team, and the software and machining expertise in Birmingham ensured successful applications across many different industries and processes.
The partners also aligned on marketing initiatives to promote the benefits of using robots for machining applications, including mounting joint demonstrations of the technology at trade shows and exhibitions.
The collaboration continued following the acquisition by Autodesk. In the years following the acquisition, Autodesk invested millions in the Birmingham site, culminating in the opening of a new Advanced Design & Manufacturing Facility in February 2018. This houses a range of advanced manufacturing tools allowing Autodesk to collaborate with its customers, helping them to solve some of their biggest challenges and to push the boundaries of manufacturing techniques.
A robot-machining system based on two KUKA robots, supplied and integrated by CNC Robotics, was among the new equipment added to the Birmingham site, and is now one of the first things that visitors see from the reception area. The capabilities of the system are used for software testing, and for a huge variety of projects, from advanced machining research to fun demonstrations, including producing a giant chocolate rabbit as part of Easter celebrations.
CNC Robotics has also continued to partner with Autodesk on its marketing of robot technology. One highlight was a unique interactive challenge at the Autodesk University event in London in 2018. Noting that 2018 was both a World Cup year and the Year of the Engineer, the companies decided to bring football and robotics together for the first time with a robot goalkeeper challenge. Conference attendees were able to test their accuracy and speed with a football by scoring against the robot.
The robot goalkeeper was also featured in a number of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) events for schoolchildren to raise their awareness of the career opportunities in manufacturing, engineering, technology and automation.