The British Automation and Robot Association (BARA) has been granted £600k by the Government to fund a programme aimed at encouraging manufacturing automation.
Due to take effect in March 2013, the programme will offer impartial advice to manufacturers on how to make the most of automation in their factories.
BARA is a member of the Processing & Packaging Machinery Association (PPMA), and primarily looks to assist SMEs throughout all manufacturing sectors within the UK. However, bigger companies with relatively limited expertise in automation are also eligible for help from the programme.
“This government funded program is a rare opportunity for UK companies to take what is a risk-free plunge into the automation arena. It could fundamentally change for the better, the way that they do business,” commented PPMA CEO Chris Buxton.
Enrolled members are to be offered support in two stages: firstly they are advised on their manufacturing operation, where an audit is conducted that aims to identify opportunities to improve production through automation. Secondly, they undergo a more detailed intervention to develop outcomes of the audit, which will provide the client manufacturer with the knowledge and information required to plan and implement the automation solution.
BARA is planning a series of seminars, starting in November 2011 that will educate firms on the real benefits of automation from the viewpoints of manufacturers that have implemented it.
“If UK manufacturing is to fulfil its potential of becoming a significant force in global markets then automation needs to be at its very heart – the Automating Manufacturing Programme will go a long way to aid this,” said BARA president Mike Wilson.
Manufacturers that are interested in learning about the benefits of automation and robotics can apply for the BARA programme here