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Ohio Northern University and KUKA Robotics Corporation unveil ONU's Robotics Center of Excellence

Ohio Northern University and KUKA Robotics Corporation are unveiling the ONU Robotics Center of Excellence powered by KUKA Robotics Corporation, with a ribbon cutting ceremony in Taft Memorial Hall at 1 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 26. The center provides ONU students with hands-on design and programming experience using KUKA robots, controllers and software.

The ONU Robotics Center of Excellence is part of its department of technological studies. The center has seven KUKA KR3 robots including KUKA controllers and software. Five of the robots are being interfaced to PLCs and CNC machines in a simulated manufacturing environment performing loading, unloading and parts transfer functions. Dr. David Rouch, chairman of the ONU department of technological studies said: "We are pleased to have developed this relationship with a world class company such as KUKA Robotics. This enterprise will open many doors for our students to work for companies that utilize KUKA robots because of the excellent educational experience they will now be able to receive with advanced technology in their coursework."

KUKA Robotics Corporation, with its parent company KUKA Roboter GmbH, Augsburg, Germany, is one of the world's leading manufacturers of industrial robots, with an annual production volume approaching 10,000 units and an installed base of more than 75,000 units.

"ONU is the highest ranked university in the state of Ohio in its category according to the recent U.S. News & World Report annual look at higher education and we share their commitment to excellence," said Kevin Kozuszek, director of marketing for KUKA Corporation. "Naturally, we are delighted to be partnering with them in this exciting newly remodeled and expanded robotics center."

Two of the robots are already slated for use in competitions by the ONU award winning traveling robotics teams. ONU robotics teams garnered five awards at the National Robotics Challenge held last year. ONU captured three gold medals in robot construction and robot maze (tactile and non-tactile), one silver (top of the hill) and one bronze (top of the hill) in the post-secondary division.

"The new robotic equipment and the new center will provide our students with an educational opportunity second to none," said Robert A. Manzer, Dean of the ONU College of Arts and Sciences. "Such leading technology will make it possible for our students to gain a world-class level of expertise."

KUKA robots are utilized in a diverse range of industries including: appliances, automotive, aerospace, consumer goods, logistics, food, pharmaceutical, medical, foundry and plastics. Other multiple applications include material handling, machine loading, assembly, packaging, palletizing, welding, bending, joining and surface finishing.