ABB’s GoFa cobot or collaborative robot was awarded the prestigious Red Dot Best of the Best design award for the innovative design concept to make the new robot appealing and accessible to users.
The global Red Dot’s “Best of the Best” award is for ground-breaking design and is the highest award in the competition, reserved for the most aesthetically appealing, functional, smart or innovative design.
GoFa is claimed to be the fastest cobot in its class and is intended to work side-by-side with humans, without the need for fences, on a wide range of tasks. Advanced safety features, including intelligent sensors in each joint which bring the cobot to a stop in milliseconds if it senses any unexpected contact and allow GoFa to safely operate directly and continuously alongside workers.
The brief for the product designers was to create an intuitive, user-friendly, approachable design to encourage people, and particularly first-time users, to confidently use and interact with GoFa.
Sami Atiya, President of ABB’s Robotics & Discrete Automation Business Area explained, “Making robots more approachable, easier to use and more intuitive is key to our vision to make robots as familiar in the workplace as a laptop is today."
Atiya added, “GoFa is a game-changer, reinforcing the importance of good industrial design to make it easier for more people to work with robots. Creating an approachable design will ensure robots are adopted across a range of workplaces outside traditional factory environments, helping us to unlock automation for new users and new industries around the world.”
GoFa’s design is user-friendly yet has a strong appearance and the advanced use of color, material and finish gives GoFa a modern, sleek look. Its simple arm-side interface design with two buttons and light ring echoes the easy-to-use interfaces of consumer products. This makes it accessible even for first-time robot users more accustomed to consumer technology and who may be unfamiliar with industrial machinery.
Andie Zhang, Global Product Manager, Collaborative Robotics for ABB Robotics pointed out, “With their ease-of-use digital tools, integrated safety features and higher payloads, our new cobots represent the future of human and robot collaboration.”
Interestingly, the GoFa cobot is built on the design concept of YuMi, one of the first collaborative robot which also won the Best of the Best Red Dot award in 2011.