Universal Robots co-founder and CTO receives Engelberger Robotics Award
- Published: June 1, 2018
The Robotic Industries Association (RIA) has named Esben Østergaard of Universal Robots the recipient of the Engelberger Robotics Award, known as the Nobel Prize of robotics.
Østergaard spearheads the development of Universal Robots’ collaborative robot (cobot) arms representing one of the most significant technology breakthroughs coming out of the robotics community in decades.
In 2008 Universal Robots launched the world’s first commercially viable robot able to operate safely outside enclosures alongside people. The launch carried substantial financial risk as human-robot collaboration was a very new concept, but the new cobot was successful and helped propel Universal Robots into a dominant market position; 58 per cent of all cobots sold worldwide are made by the company, which grew by 72 per cent last year.
RIA president Jeff Burnstein calls Østergaard a visionary in defining a new category of robotics. “His work in the field of collaborative robot applications has allowed robots to enter previously unthinkable sectors in just about every industry,” says Burnstein. “Esben Østergaard’s emphasis on robots that work side-by-side with people and are easy to use has created enormous interest among many small and medium sized companies who never even considered robots before. In a world that is increasingly characterized by people and robots working together, Esben’s pioneering technology advances play a pivotal role.”
The Engelberger Awards Dinner and Ceremony will be held on Wednesday June 20, 2018 at the Hofbräuhaus in Munich, Germany as part of Automatica and the International Symposium on Robotics.