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Robotics combines the fields of mechanical engineering, computer science and electrical engineering into one discipline. Engineers are responsible for the design, construction and operation of robots as well as the sensory feedback, information processing and computer systems that control them. Technicians may assist mechanical and electronic engineers in any of the development phases which include the design, production, testing and operation. Robotics technicians could be employed by either the manufacturer or distributor or by the end-users of robots. After installation, a technician may be asked to help create in-house maintenance and repair schedules. For those who are employed by the manufacturer, service calls may be part of their daily routine. Robotics can be found in the fields of surgery, manufacturing, weaponry, safety, research and mass production of consumer goods.
Employers look for a bachelor’s degree for those wanting to be a robotics engineer and at least an associate degree for those wanting to be a robotics technician. According to the US Bureau of Labor, the field of robotics engineering is projected to grow by 4% through 2024 while the field of robotics technicians is expected to grow by 1%. Both fields are broken down into several specialty fields which include machine automation, cybernetics, air traffic management and medical robotics. Skills that all employees should have include installing safety systems, reading and interpreting schematics, using hydraulic test equipment, failure analysis testing and robot installation and removal.