BPW to use robots in vocational and professional training

Equipment specialist, BPW, has started its own training centre for robotics at its headquarters in Wiehl, Germany.

For the first time, apprentices, employees and students can learn about how to operate, maintain and program modern robots in the company’s own training centre under real-life conditions. To enable this, the company installed two 6-axle robots from the company Kuka. They can literally operate hand in hand and will now exclusively serve vocational and professional training purposes.

Although robots come as standard in today’s industrial facilities, the new BPW training centre is unique, even in Germany’s industrial heartland of North-Rhine Westphalia.

“Having our own training centre gives us the opportunity to significantly enhance our vocational training programme in the field of robotics,” explained Harold Mayer, who was responsible for the project as trainer. “Alongside the technical installation of the robots themselves, we have also developed a corresponding didactic concept. Since spring, our apprentices in the fields of electronics and mechatronics were trained and in the second step, we will introduce the future industrial mechanics to the system.”

BPW employees can also be safely instructed in the operation and maintenance of robots in the training centre. Mayer emphasised that: “Safety was paramount when the training system was designed, as industrial robots move extremely quickly and powerfully. Along with students of the Technical College in Siegen, we developed a comprehensive safety concept. It effectively reduces risks and enables the system to be used in near-real operating conditions. We are proud of this system, as it once again proves us to be among the top companies for apprentices in Germany”.

(Image L-R: Nikolaj Merkel, Andreas Janzen und Thorben Kalkkuhl developed the robotic system as part of a project of the Technical College in Siegen.)

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