A new robotic production system was unveiled last month at a business in Latham. The company, Integra Optics, says it is the only system of its kind in the Western Hemisphere.
The automated system is expected help the company meet the demands of a booming industry.
“The nice thing about robots is they don’t need to rest or sleep,” said Jim Pascarell, president of Integra Optics. The robots can produce more than 3,000 optics each day.
The fiber optics industry is growing rapidly.
“The current industry is about a $4 billion industry and is projected to grow to close to $40 billion within the next 5 years,” said Pascarell.
Integra Optics is a provider of fiber optic components. The transceivers allow for the high speed transfer of data. Clients include major phone companies and cable providers.
The futuristic appearing robots are named after characters on the Jetsons. Rosie verifies coding on the optics and places them into packaging. Mac manages inventory. Lectronimo handles packaging before they’re shipped.
The automated production system significantly increases their production capacity. But make no mistake: Pascarell says the robots are not replacing humans on their team.
“What the robot does is it takes certain orders that are more conducive for mechanical automation, and then it also takes the people that would’ve been fulfilling those orders and they become maintainers or the robot,” said Pascarell.
Integra optics aims to boost annual sales from $40 million to $100 million by 2022. Scaling the company to meet industry demand, with robots processing and packaging products, allowing team members time to focus on research and development.