Center for Occupational Robotics Research PPOP

What are our priorities?

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Center for Occupational Robotics Research (CORR) addresses the safety of today’s workers who use, wear, or work near robots. CORR accomplishes this by working in partnership with academic researchers, trade associations, robotics manufacturers, employers using robotics, integrators who set up robotic systems in workplaces, labor organizations, and government agencies. The Center addresses traditional robots and emerging technologies such as collaborative robots, mobile robots, powered human exoskeletons, and remotely controlled or autonomous vehicles and drones. The Center focuses on:

  • Identifying opportunities to better protect worker safety and health using robotics
  • Increasing understanding of human and robot interactions to ensure human worker safety
  • Improving the ability to identify and track injuries and fatalities involving robotics
  • Providing guidance on working safely with robotics
What do we do?
  • Monitor trends in robotics and associated injuries.
  • Evaluate robotics as sources of, and interventions for, workplace injuries and illnesses.
  • Identify research needs and conduct studies to improve the safety, health, and well-being of humans working with robots and robotics.
  • Establish risk profiles of robotics applications in workplaces.
  • Support the development and adoption of consensus safety standards.
  • Develop and communicate best practices, guidance, and training for safe interactions between human workers and robots.
What have we accomplished?
What’s next?
  • Partner with NSF to fund studies on innovations in integration of robotics to improve worker safety through the
    National Robotics Initiative 3.0.
  • Publish a journal article reviewing case studies of industrial robots implemented as insurer-supported safety and health interventions.
  • Provide input on worker safety needs to the Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR) Standards
  • Task Force to inform the development of a standards road map for AMR.
  • Disseminate information on an Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA) document on working safely with robots that is being updated through an alliance including the Association for Advancing Automation (A3) and NIOSH.

Mention of any company or product does not constitute endorsement by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

At-A-Glance

The Center provides scientific leadership to guide the development and use of occupational robots that enhance worker safety, health, and well-being. This snapshot shows recent accomplishments and upcoming work.

Operational Stock of industrial Robots Worldwide (1,000 units)
Operational Stock of industrial Robots Worldwide (1,000 units)

Source: International Federation of Robotics [2020]. World Robotics Industrial Robots 2020.pdf iconexternal icon

Collaborative and Traditional Industrial Robots: Sales volume (1,000 units)
Collaborative and Traditional Industrial Robots: Sales volume (1,000 units)

Source: International Federation of Robotics [2020]. World Robotics Industrial Robots 2020.pdf iconexternal icon

Powered Human Exoskeleton: Unit Sales (1,000 units)
Powered Human Exoskeleton: Unit Sales (1,000 units)

Source: International Federation of Robotics [2020]. World Robotics Industrial Robots 2020.pdf iconexternal icon

To learn more, visit
www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/robotics
July 2021

Page last reviewed: July 2, 2021