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Fully entering the late stage of industrialization, machine substitution is the general trend
1.1 The epidemic will not change the recovery of the industry, and the prosperity of the manufacturing industry will continue to rise
my country’s industrial robot output has stepped out of the sluggish negative growth stage since September 2018 since October 2019. Although it was affected by the new crown epidemic in early 2020, it has not changed the overall recovery trend of the industry. Since October 2019, the industry’s output has increased year-on-year. Repeatedly hitting new highs, the output of industrial robots in March 2021 was 33,000 units, an increase of 80.8% year-on-year.
In terms of global sales, since the fourth quarter of 2018, the industrial robot industry has been greatly affected by the downturn in the downstream automobile and 3C industries, which has a certain impact on the production and sales of industrial robots in 2019, with sales down 11.61% year-on-year. And technological improvement, the average annual growth rate from 2020 to 2022 can be maintained at 11.97%, and the global sales of industrial robots in 2022 is expected to reach 593,000 units.
From the perspective of downstream demand, the global manufacturing investment has maintained a recovery trend. From the perspective of the manufacturing PMI index of major countries in the world, the UK manufacturing PMI reached a new high of 60.9 in 26 years in April; the US PMI has been running for 14 consecutive years since March last year. Month is above 50. Domestically, my country’s manufacturing PMI has remained above the line of prosperity and decline since March 2020. In March 2021, the cumulative investment in manufacturing fixed assets rose to 29.8% year-on-year. From the perspective of the growth rate of fixed asset investment in the automobile manufacturing industry and the 3C industry, where the application of industrial robots is the largest The rate of rapid decline continued to narrow, and it was -3.3% in March 2021; the 3C manufacturing industry has steadily recovered since April last year, and has increased by 40.4% year-on-year in March. On the whole, the prosperity of the application side of the downstream manufacturing industry has maintained a continuous recovery trend.
1.2 The demographic dividend is gradually fading, and machine substitution is a definite trend
Favorable policies are frequently issued, and the state strongly supports the development of industrial robots. my country has been the world’s largest market for industrial robots for many years. Industrial robots, as terminal equipment for automated production, play a crucial role in manufacturing upgrades. The government has issued many policies to strongly support the development of my country’s industrial robot industry. The “Made in China 2025” proposed by the State Council clarifies the development direction of manufacturing upgrades, and industrial robots are the top priority. With the industrial policy of China’s intelligent manufacturing upgrade and the growth of demand in downstream industries, it is expected that by 2025, the key areas of my country’s manufacturing industry will be fully intelligent, and key positions will be replaced by robots. At the same time, with the price drop of industrial robots, the improvement of performance and the expansion of application fields, the industrial robot industry will continue to maintain a momentum of rapid growth. In May 2020, the Two Sessions once again proposed to support the development of the core parts and components industry of industrial robots, and are optimistic about the accelerated closed loop of the domestic industrial robot industry chain in the future.
The demographic dividend advantage of my country’s manufacturing industry is gradually fading. The growth mode of China’s manufacturing industry in the past mainly relied on the low-cost advantage brought by the large working population base. From 1994 to 2019, the birth rate of China’s population dropped from 17.8‰ to 10.48‰, which was lower than the global crude birth rate of 18.17‰ in 2018. . The decline in the birth rate directly leads to an increase in the wages of manufacturing employees. The average wage of employees in manufacturing urban units in my country has risen from 30,916 yuan in 2010 to 78,147 yuan in 2019, with an average annual compound growth rate of 10.85%; from the perspective of the distribution of labor force population structure, the proportion of the population aged 15-64 in the total population in my country It has been declining continuously, and it is only 70.65% by 2019. It can be seen that the current population cost in my country is continuously increasing, the proportion of the working-age population is continuously decreasing, and the advantage of my country’s demographic dividend is gradually fading.
The price gap is gradually narrowing, and the replacement of robots has a high cost performance. From the perspective of the price of industrial robots, from 1996 to 2019, the average import price of industrial robots in my country has dropped from US$47,600/unit to US$16,300/unit. The scissors gap is shrinking continuously. Considering the improvement of efficiency and safety brought by the replacement of labor by industrial robots, the replacement of human by machine has a high cost performance.
The epidemic has driven the demand for automation upgrades in the manufacturing industry. Mr. Shi Shengjun, the editor-in-chief of my country’s first robot industry blue book “China Robot Industry Development Report (2019)”, said in a recent interview that after the epidemic, more industries will accelerate their efforts to “less humanized, unmanned, and intelligent”; and At the People’s Network’s “Golden Platform Roundtable” People’s War Epidemic Enterprise Countermeasures Conference, Mr. Teng Tai, President of Wanbo New Economic Research Institute, also said that after the epidemic is over, enterprises will increasingly use automation, robots, and artificial intelligence. and other modern management methods. In this COVID-19 epidemic, the leading manufacturing enterprises have a high level of automation and have shown great advantages in the resumption of work. After the short-term impact of the epidemic has passed, it will inevitably promote the further application and penetration of robotic automation, and will promote manufacturing in a longer period of time. Industry automation rate increased. Overall, the long-term trend of robot substitution will not change.
1.3 Fully entered the late stage of industrialization, benchmarking against Japan, industrial robots developed rapidly at this stage
my country has entered the later stage of industrialization in an all-round way. In 2019, my country’s per capita GDP was 70,891.78 yuan, or about 10,141.89 U.S. dollars, which was in the late stage of industrialization in the Chenery Model; the three industrial structure was 7.1%: 38.6%: 54.3%, satisfying A<10%, I
Learning from the development experience of Japan, the development prospects of my country’s industrial robots are still broad
Although my country is the world’s largest country in terms of sales of industrial robots, the retention density is still low. Although my country’s industrial robot sales reached 140,500 units in 2019, accounting for 37.67% of global sales, it continued to maintain its position as the world’s largest supplier of industrial robots. However, judging from the per capita density of industrial robots in major countries in the world, Singapore, which currently has the highest density of industrial robots in the world, has reached 918 units per 10,000 people. In contrast, in 2019, the density of industrial robots in my country increased by 47% compared with last year. The number of units per 10,000 people reached 187 units per 10,000 people, but it is still far lower than that of more developed countries such as South Korea (855), Japan (364), and Germany (346). In the future, there is still huge room for domestic industrial robots to increase.
The current development background of industrial robots in my country is very similar to that of Japan: sharp rise in labor costs, upgrading of industrial structure, and special national policy support. According to the Chenery model of industrialization, Japan entered the late stage of industrialization around 1970. At this stage, industrial robot products, as one of the representative equipment of intelligent and automated production, have entered a period of explosive growth in demand. Its robot holdings saw a compound annual growth rate of more than 50% between 1970 and 1980.
1.4 There is still room for structural upgrading in downstream application fields
Among the downstream application fields of industrial robots, the automotive and 3C fields account for the highest proportions. In 2019, the automobile and 3C industries together accounted for more than 50%, of which the automobile manufacturing industry is the most widely used, mature and largest number of industrial robots, accounting for 28.15%. The 3C industry has high requirements on production efficiency and precision due to product manufacturing, and the characteristics of industrial robots meet the requirements of high precision and high flexibility, and its downstream applications account for 23.59%, ranking second.
The penetration of new energy vehicles and 5G mobile phones is accelerating, and the demand for industrial robots is expected to pick up. In the past few years, due to the slowdown in the growth rate of traditional fuel vehicles and 3C industries, the market demand for industrial robots has shown a weak trend. The accelerated penetration of mobile phones will support the continued recovery of demand for industrial robots.
The penetration rate of wireless headphones is still low, and the proportion of the 3C industry is expected to increase again in the future. Since Apple launched Airpods wireless earphones in 2016, global wireless earphone shipments have maintained a triple-digit growth trend. In 2020, global wireless earphone shipments will be 270 million sets, a year-on-year increase of 105.4%. We believe that the current penetration rate of wireless earphones is still low. As the technology becomes more mature and the price gradually decreases in the future, the continuous increase in the shipment of wireless earphones will drive the new demand for industrial robots in the 3C industry and become a new growth point for industrial robots. .
In vertical comparison, the structural upgrade of application fields deserves attention. By comparing with the proportion of downstream application structure in 2018, we can find that although the two major fields of automobile and 3C still occupy the first and second place in 2019, compared with 2018, the application proportion of these two fields in 2019 decreased by 9.29% respectively. , 2.69%, while the proportion of applications in unclassified fields increased by 9.45 percentage points, indicating that the current global industrial robot downstream application field is gradually spreading, and the future structural upgrade of industrial robot application fields is worthy of attention.
2. Industrial Robot Segmentation Industry Analysis
At present, industrial robots can be divided into four categories: multi-joint robots, collaborative robots, Delta robots and SCARA robots.
From the perspective of domestic industrial machine market sales, 6-axis multi-joint robots will account for the highest sales volume in 2020, with market sales of about 107,800 units, accounting for about 62.88%, followed by SCARA robots, collaborative robots and Delta robots. They accounted for 29.49%, 4.38% and 3.24% respectively.
2.1 Multi-joint robot
A multi-joint robot generally refers to a joint mechanical arm with 6 rotation axes. Its advantage is that it has a high degree of freedom similar to the human hand and is suitable for almost any trajectory or angle. With different end effectors, the articulated robot can be used for loading, unloading, painting, surface treatment, testing, measuring, arc welding, spot welding, packaging, assembly, chip cutting machine, fixing, special assembly operations, forging, casting and many other application scenarios.
Limited by the peak of demand for traditional automobiles, the growth of multi-joint robots has slowed down. Judging from the shipments of 6-axis multi-joint robots, since multi-joint robots are mostly used in the automobile manufacturing industry, with the gradual slowdown of fixed asset investment in the automobile manufacturing industry in recent years, the industry’s demand for upstream multi-joint robots has also gradually slowed down. In the future, the continuous increase in the proportion of new energy vehicles is expected to drive the increase in the market demand for multi-joint robots.
>20kg multi-joint robots are dominated by foreign brands, and the competition pattern for small loads is relatively fierce. In 2020, the market share of 6-axis robots over 20 kg in my country will be 44,421 units. Among them, the top five share of Fanuc, Yaskawa, KUKA, Kawasaki, and ABB are all foreign brands, accounting for a total market share of about 70%. In this field, The domestic leader Estun only occupies 6.9% of the market share. In the field of small load (≤20kg), the competition pattern is relatively scattered and the competition is fierce. The industry CR5 is 50.8%. In this field, domestic brands can occupy a certain market share.
2.2 Collaborative Robots
Collaborative robots refer to robots that are designed to interact directly with humans in a collaborative area. Different from traditional robots, collaborative robots are highly independent, interchangeable between robots and humans, and have very high flexibility in the production process. However, its shortcomings are also obvious. In the process of cooperating with people, to protect the safety of people in the future, higher requirements are placed on the robot’s control ability and anti-collision ability. Therefore, the running speed of collaborative robots is generally only 1/3-1/3 of that of traditional robots. 2. In addition, in order to reduce the kinetic energy of the robot during movement, its design structure is generally simpler and lighter, which leads to its load generally only below 10kg, and the application scenarios are limited.
Shipments of collaborative robots have grown rapidly, with AUBO and Universal Robots occupying 2/3 of the market. The scale of the collaborative robot market has grown rapidly from 1,714 units in 2016 to 7,514 units in 2020, with a compound annual growth rate of 44.70%. It is estimated that by 2022, the scale of my country’s collaborative robot market is expected to grow to 9,426 units. From the perspective of market structure, the two leaders in the industry, AUBO and Universal Robots, account for 33.3% and 30% respectively, and together they account for 2/3 of my country’s collaborative robot market share.
2.3 Delta Robot
A parallel robot refers to a robot whose arm contains a closed-loop structure rod, which consists of a moving platform, a static platform and at least two independent motion branches. The parallel robot with 3 spatial degrees of freedom and 1 rotational degree of freedom is usually called in the industry. Delta robots, from the perspective of product structure, Delta robots occupy 60%-70% of the market share of parallel robots. Different from the traditional serial robot structure, the movement of one axis of the parallel robot will not change the coordinate origin of the other axis.
Parallel robots are small in size and are often used for sorting and packaging. The Delta robot market size in 2020 is 5,563 units, accounting for only 3.24% of the national industrial robot market size in 2020. The small size is mainly due to the high cost of parallel robots. Taking the most widely used Delta robot as an example, its cost is generally around 100,000 yuan, while the unit price of imported horizontal joint robots is around 50,000 yuan. Although the parallel robot has an advantage in motion speed Obviously, but the horizontal joint robot has a higher cost-effectiveness advantage while having higher precision. In the future, the parallel robot needs to further reduce the production cost and stimulate downstream demand with a relatively close cost-effectiveness.
2.4 SCARA Robot
SCARA robot (Selective Compliance Assembly Robot Arm, Selective Compliance Assembly Robot Arm) is a plane joint industrial robot. The structure includes 3 mutually parallel rotating joints and 1 moving joint perpendicular to the plane. Positioning and motion of industrial robots in the vertical plane.
The market scale is growing rapidly, and the demand for SCARA robots in the 3C industry is large. SCARA robots have the characteristics of small load and fast speed. They are mainly used in the 3C industry, food industry, semiconductor industry and medical industry, etc. Among them, the number of robots required for an Electronic production line in the 3C industry often reaches more than one hundred units. Robots are in the largest demand, accounting for about 60%. From the perspective of market size, since 2016, the scale of my country’s SCARA robot market has increased from 18,779 units to 50,574 units, with an annual growth rate of 28.10%. It is estimated that by 2022, my country’s SCARA market share is expected to reach 58,278 units.
Epson and Yamaha occupy half of the market, and Huichuan is the domestic leader. At present, my country’s SCARA robot market has basically formed a pattern dominated by two foreign-funded enterprises, Epson and Yamaha. In 2020, the two companies will occupy a total of 50% of the Chinese market share, of which Epson has maintained the world’s largest SCARA robot market share since 2011. It is the absolute leader in the industry worldwide. Due to the late start of domestic enterprises, the domestic enterprise market is relatively small in terms of shipments. Among them, Inovance Technology is the leading domestic enterprise, with shipments reaching 3,535 units in 2020, accounting for about 7%.
3. The leader in the subdivision field is emerging, and the domestic replacement is highly certain
Since 2013, China has become the world’s largest industrial robot market. From 2015 to 2018, the installed volume of industrial robots in China was 68,500 units, 96,500 units, 156,200 units and 154,000 units, respectively. In terms of industrial robot bodies, the market share of domestic and foreign robot bodies in the domestic market in 2019 (calculated by the number of units) was 29.7%, a significant increase from 18.6% in 2015.
3.1 Industrial Robot Industry Chain Situation
At present, the industrial robot industry chain can be mainly divided into three aspects: upstream core components, midstream body manufacturing and downstream system integration. From the perspective of cost, the three major components are the largest part of the cost of industrial robots. In particular, the cost of the reducer has exceeded the proportion of the body, reaching 32%. The other two core components are the servo system and the controller respectively. It accounts for 22% and 12% of the cost of industrial robots.
In terms of market share, the global industrial robot market is mainly occupied by four major families (ABB in Switzerland, KUKA in Germany, Fanuc in Japan, and Yaskawa in Japan). From the perspective of the industrial chain, the four major families occupy a dominant position in the manufacturing of upstream parts and midstream robots, while domestic enterprises have less independent core technologies, low level of robotics technology, and products are mainly for low-end products. However, with the continuous increase in the autonomy rate of domestic robots in recent years, although foreign capital still has a dominant position, domestic enterprises will gradually develop into the field of core parts and components by virtue of their cost and service advantages. Parts company.
From the perspective of profitability, there are certain differences in the profitability of the upstream parts, midstream body and downstream integration fields of industrial robots. Among them, companies in the midstream Ontology field have relatively low gross and net profit margins, while the parts and integration fields have strong profitability due to their higher process requirements and customer resource advantages.
3.2.1 Core component one: reducer
At present, the reducers used in the field of robots are mainly divided into two types: harmonic reducers and RV reducers. In the articulated robot, because the RV reducer has higher rigidity and rotation accuracy, it is generally placed in the position of heavy load such as the machine base, the arm, and the shoulder, while the harmonic reducer is placed on the forearm and wrist. or hand.
In the global reducer market, the industry leader of harmonic reducer is Hamernaco, and the industry leader of RV reducer is Nabtesco. At present, in the precision robot reducer market, the above two companies rely on strong capital strength and long-term investment. The accumulation of technology has occupied about 75% of the global industrial robot reducer market. The domestic reducer leader is Green Harmonic. Although it has completed the research and development of industrial robot harmonic reducer technology earlier and realized large-scale production, realizing the substitution of imported products, we can analyze the average export price of its reducer products. It was found that the average price of the harmonic reducers sold by the company to overseas is lower than that of domestic customers, mainly because the products sold overseas are mainly small harmonic reducers purchased by Universal Robots.
3.2.2 Core Component 2: Servo System
The servo system refers to an automatic control system composed of the position, orientation, state and other control variables of the object, which can follow any changing input target or a given amount, mainly including the driver and the motor. The servo system can amplify, transform and regulate the power according to the requirements of the control command. Through the control of the motor output torque, speed and position by the driving device, the final mechanical displacement can accurately implement the input command requirements.
In 2018, the market size of the AC servo system was 6.942 billion yuan, with a year-on-year growth rate of 3.93%; among which, the market size of the AC servo system used in the field of industrial robots was 2.150 billion yuan, accounting for 30.97%. As the proportion of servo systems in the AC servo market will gradually increase, by 2023, the market share of servo systems for robots is expected to increase to more than 40%, and the market size will reach 4.1 billion yuan.
The market share of servo systems for domestic industrial robots is 22.34%, and most of the market share is still occupied by foreign capital. In 2018, Japanese brands represented by Japan’s Panasonic, Yaskawa, and Mitsubishi accounted for about 47% of the total domestic servo system market share. European and American brands such as Siemens, Bosch Rexroth, and B&R mainly seized the high-end market. There is a big gap between domestic brands and foreign brands in terms of technical reserves, product performance and quality. However, in recent years, the localized production speed of servo systems has been accelerating, and domestic brands such as Inovance Technology, Estun, and Leisai Intelligence have developed rapidly, and their market share has steadily increased.
3.2.3 Core Component 3: Controller
The controller includes two parts: hardware and software: the hardware part is mainly industrial control boards, including some main control units, signal processing parts and other circuits; the software part is mainly control algorithms, secondary development, etc. Although the cost and technical threshold of the controller are relatively low, at present, most Chinese controller companies only produce general-purpose controllers. Mature robot manufacturers generally develop their own controllers in order to ensure the stability of the robot, so they focus on the field of industrial robot controllers. The number of enterprises is small, so the market share of the controller is basically the same as that of the robot body.
The controllers mainly include PLC control, PC-Based control and dedicated control, accounting for about 30%, 32% and 38% respectively. Industrial robots mainly use PC-Based controller and dedicated control. Among them, the PC-Based controller section provides dungeon function circuits for flexible secondary development and programming, which can realize more complex motion control.
At present, the domestic controller can already meet the basic requirements, but there is still a certain gap with foreign companies in the research and development of the control system. The domestic control system has a certain advantage in the low-end field due to its high cost performance. In the future, with the requirements of intelligent and flexible development of industrial robots, controllers will gradually develop towards standardization and openness, and domestic control systems will usher in development opportunities.
3.3 Midstream Industrial Robot Body
Industrial robot body manufacturers are responsible for the assembly and integration of industrial robot bodies, that is, bases and actuators, including arms, wrists, etc. Some robot bodies also include walking structures. According to the mechanical structure, industrial robots can be divided into Cartesian coordinate robots, SCARA robots, articulated robots, cylindrical coordinate robots, etc. The sales structure of industrial robots in my country is dominated by coordinate robots and joint robots, accounting for 80%.
The proportion of domestic brand robot sales is increasing. From 2015 to 2019, the domestic market share of domestic robot bodies increased from 18.6% to 30.3%, and the proportion of domestic capital in 2020 dropped slightly to 28.6%. At present, domestic-funded industrial robot body manufacturing is still mainly concentrated in the low-end market, and the high-end application market is still occupied by FANUC, KUKA, ABB, and Yaskawa.
The high-end market is monopolized by the “Four Families”, and Estun has entered the top ten in the world. In 2020, the “four major families” together accounted for 36% of the market share, namely Fanuc (14%), ABB (8%), Yaskawa (8%), and KUKA (6%). The domestic leader Estun has a market share of 3%, ranking eighth, and is the only domestic brand in the top ten.
3.4 Downstream Industrial Robot Integration Field
Industrial robot companies are mainly concentrated in the field of system integration. System integration and application, this stage mainly carries out targeted system integration and software secondary development on the basis of the industrial robot body according to different application scenarios and uses, and systematically integrates the robot body and auxiliary equipment to make it have a specific Ability to work.
In 2019, the scale of China’s industrial robot system integration market was 185.7 billion yuan, of which 80% of the market share was occupied by local industrial robot system integrators, an increase of two percentage points from 2018. We believe that as 5G technology drives the 3C industry to speed up again, the demand for system integration is also expected to continue to increase. By 2022, the market size of industrial robot system integration is expected to exceed 200 billion yuan.
As of June 2020, a total of 9,456 industrial robot system integrators were included in the MIRDATABANK database. Among them, the Yangtze River Delta region and the Pearl River Delta region are the two major agglomeration areas, and the total proportion of manufacturers in the two regions exceeds 70%. Among them, 30% are concentrated in Guangdong Province, 41.4% are concentrated in Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Shanghai, and 5.1% are concentrated in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, which is highly consistent with the distribution of industrial robot industrial parks across the country.
Domestic system integrators are large in number and small in scale, and they are concentrated in the low-end and middle-end fields. At present, my country’s industrial robot system integrators are mainly domestic-funded. In 2019, domestic-funded brands accounted for about 80% of the domestic market share. The scale of enterprises is generally small and mainly serves the low-end market. Foreign-funded industrial robot system integrators are mainly concentrated in High-end process segment and mid-end process segment, such as welding, assembly, riveting and inspection and other system integration fields. With the increasingly fierce competition in the domestic market, there is a high probability that the industry will be reshuffled after the epidemic. It is expected that the number of local inherited enterprises will gradually decrease in the future.
Downstream electronics and automobiles are the main industries, and the growth rate of share shows a downward trend. In 2019, the electronics and automotive industries were the two industries with the largest market shares in the downstream industry of industrial robot system integration, accounting for about 39% in total. From the perspective of the growth of downstream sub-sectors, in 2019, except for the decline in the growth of the two major application fields of electronics and automobiles, all other industries have improved, and the industry with the largest improvement is the metal processing industry.
Fourth, the future development prospects of industrial robots
The programming method will transition from manual teaching to offline programming. In the current robot application, manual teaching still dominates the entire field of robot welding. The teach pendant is a handheld device for manual robot manipulation, programming, parameter configuration and monitoring, and it is also the most common robot control device. However, the traditional manual teaching lacks external information sensing, has poor flexibility, requires operators to spend a lot of time, and requires the robot to stop working during the programming process, so the programming efficiency is poor. Compared with teaching programming, offline programming can reduce the working time of the robot, and combine with CAD technology to achieve the effect of simplifying programming.
Intelligent manufacturing injects impetus into the development of industrial robots. In recent years, my country has issued a number of policies to provide a strong policy guarantee for the development of intelligent manufacturing. As the core engine for my country to comprehensively improve the competitiveness of the manufacturing industry in the medium and long term, the National Development and Reform Commission and other departments have launched intelligent manufacturing pilot demonstration projects since 2015. Encourage the construction of smart manufacturing units, smart production lines and smart factories. Judging from the results of the demonstration projects, the development of the intelligent manufacturing industry has a direct pulling effect on industrial robots, frequency conversion, servo, PLC, DCS and other industries.
Human-robot collaboration has become the development direction of industrial robots. Traditional industrial robots need to keep a safe distance from humans when working to prevent humans from being hurt. At present, the safety control scheme of human-robot collaboration can be basically divided into two types: the external control system scheme based on external monitoring and the internal control system scheme designed for the robot body, including specific methods such as the installation of laser distance sensors and the lightweight of the robot body. With the continuous improvement of robot stability and intelligence level, human-robot collaboration can combine human cognitive judgment with the efficiency of robots, which is an important development direction of industrial robots.
Source: Control Engineering Network