Robot remanufacturing for a second life

Robot remanufacturing for a second life

ABB recycles, remanufactures thousands of old robots.

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ABB is committed to creating more environmentally friendly manufacturing facilities. Remanufacturing enables existing robot users to sell inactive or legacy robots to ABB with an attractive buy back service, rather than scrapping them or leaving them unused.

Over the last 25 years, thousands of robots have been refurbished and upgraded by ABB’s remanufactured robot teams to give them a second life. Peripheral equipment such as controllers and manipulators are also refurbished to like-new conditions at one of ABB’s Global Remanufacture & Workshop Repair Centers.

Before being labelled as an ABB-certified remanufactured robot, every secondhand unit undergoes rigorous checks, including a detailed inspection and a minimum 16-hour functioning test. Each remanufactured robot comes with a two-year warranty and buyers of refurbished equipment enjoy the same level of support from local service teams, including installation and training, as they would with the purchase of a new ABB robot.

“Unlike third-party refurbishers who only fix faulty parts, we completely remanufacture our robots using original ABB design plans, specifications and dimensional data. This guarantees that the robots offer the same level of quality, performance, durability, and safety as a new ABB robot,” says Jan Borsky, Sales Manager of ABB’s Global Remanufacture & Workshop Repair Centers. “We have one of the largest inventories of pre-owned and reconditioned robots across the world, with 400 robots of various types in stock for sale, and the demand for second life robots is so high that we have more than one robot leaving our Ostrava facility every working day.”

Each remanufactured robot can be upgraded to the latest controller, which unlocks new functionalities such as ABB Ability Connected services or the latest version of RobotStudio, ABB's simulation and offline programming software. Upgrades can also unlock the potential of collaborative robotics, with ABB’s SafeMove software providing businesses the opportunity to enable robots to work alongside operators without the need for extensive guarding, which reduces both cost of installation and overall footprint, ideal for locations where space is at a premium.

“Customers across the world are benefiting from giving old robots a new life. Updating their robots with the latest technologies has helped boost flexibility and productivity, and by extending the lifetime of their robots has maximized their return on investment,” Borsky adds. “We’ve also helped existing robot customers who wanted to add additional robots to their existing production line but found that the specific model they needed had been discontinued. We sourced and installed a remanufactured model, so the business could continue to benefit from long-term efficiencies in maintenance, spare parts, and staff training.”