Want a Career in Robotics? Here are 6 Options You Should Consider

Artificial intelligence dominates discussions regarding the future of technology. However, the revolutionary effects of robotics are already being seen, and the business case for further automation is already evidenced. It ranges from increasing use of robots in the home, to smart appliances, to advances in already automated manufacturing facilities. The question for many is how to prepare themselves for this growing field. If you were interested in pursuing a career in robotics, here are 6 great options you could consider.

Robotics Engineer

Robotics engineers are responsible for designing new robots and robotic systems. They’ll design the entire robot and determine how it will work with other machines and people around it. After the robot has been designed, they may determine how to repair it or supervise the installation of it at the customer’s site. Engineers may also be asked to verify that new hardware and software works with existing robotic systems. Or they may be told to come up with a way to use an existing robot in a new way.

Robotics engineers will also be in great demand in the future to work on things like autonomous vehicles. Mobile robots are part of every autonomous vehicle, and mobile robotics is a growing field with a lot of demand. If you’re interested in a career involving mobile robotics, you could get an MSECE degree from Kettering University online. This master’s degree in ECE mobility teaches you how to design autonomous vehicles, mobile robots and dynamic systems. It also addresses the needs of AI and “smart” appliances, so that existing systems can be made more intelligent.

Mobile robots aren’t limited to automobiles either. Understanding mobile robotics will also allow you to work on manufacturing robotics and in smart factories. Delivery drones could also boost the demand for engineers who have a good knowledge of how mobile robotics work in the future.

Robotic Sales Engineer

A related job is working as a sales engineer for robotic systems. In order to fill this position, you have to be able to understand the customer’s needs relative to the products you make or can design for them. You also have to be able to make the case for automation.

For example, you have to be able to explain how new automated equipment will increase their throughput and increase product quality, or how it could improve safety and allow them to reallocate their workforce. One benefit of this job is that you can move into this field without knowing how to actually design or program robots. You just have to be able to understand the merits of the systems you sell and convince others to buy them. You also have to be a good salesman, and be able to quickly identify the main issues clients may be facing.

Robotics Technician

A robotics technician supports and repairs existing robots and automated systems. They may work in the factory assembling the robot, installing it at the customer’s site or repairing it when it breaks down. Robotics technicians often stand between the customer and the robotics engineer, reporting performance in the field to the engineer. Or they simply visit customers whenever the robot needs to be fixed.

This is also one of the fields in robotics with the lowest barrier to entry. If you want to work as a robotics technician, you may learn the skills for this role in trade school or be trained by the robot manufacturer.

Software Developer

The robot’s body is hardware. The intelligence or program running it is software. This is why robotics is driving demand for software developers. Software developers in this niche don’t care about operating systems or apps. Instead, they’re figuring out how to connect sensors so that the robot can avoid obstacles and recognize defective products.

They also design the software interfaces so that customers can control the robot or troubleshoot error codes. Because the robots use a mixture of hardware and sensors for a variety of sources, programmers in this field generally need to know several programming languages.

Robotics Operator

While robots are becoming more intelligent, they can’t do everything themselves. This is increasing demand for skilled operators. They may be supplying the robot with parts, clearing jams, removing obstacles or attempting to deal with error codes.

Because automated factories are running 24×7, robotics operators can find work on whatever shift they’d like to work. They may be asked to support multiple robots at the same time. They’ll call a robotics technician if they can’t resolve the issue themselves.

For example, they may take control of the robot when it encounters an unfamiliar situation and return it to its default location. Or they may change the settings on a robot as the product mix changes. In other cases, they’re in complete control of the robot as it does everything else that needs to be done. Robotics operators may learn these skills on the job or through a training program.

Drone Operators

Drone operators qualify as a robot operator, given how intelligent these devices are. The drone flies and takes pictures or captures video, but the drone operator determines where the drone will go.

Drones are being used to monitor the environment, search for missing people, track potential criminals, make deliveries and support the military. This is in addition to the rapid growth of drone photography in real estate, construction and security. You can let the drone determine whether or not the mine is in danger of collapse and whether someone is trapped in the rubble. This reduces the risk of people working out in the field, and it saves money, too. A surprising number of drone operators are hobbyists who’ve made a living out of it.

No matter your education level or abilities, there is a job in robotics that is right for you. This career field is booming for those with the right education or expertise. Make sure that you give all these career choices a second look, and see which ones spark your interest the most.