ROBOTS and humans might be able to work together after all... if one Sussex company has anything to say about it.

Hanover Displays in Lewes “hired” its first bot in September 2018 to improve testing of the electronic signs it produces for trains and buses.

Nearly two years later the company has now introduced a second batch of robots - dubbed “cobots” because they are “collaborative robots” designed to operate alongside humans.

“They differ from traditional robots, which are designed to operate without human interaction and contact,” a Hanover spokeswoman said.

“Collaborative robots are designed to work alongside teams, interacting with humans in a shared space.”

The firm says the technology has proved its worth, delivering “pinpoint accuracy” when testing computer parts needed for its signs.

The robots can carry out repeated actions within 50 micrometres - about the width of a single fibre of wool.

“The cobots are transforming the way we deliver our testing service,” said Hanover’s operations manager Sean Winter.

“Hanover has always been proud of its ability to provide reliable solutions to the passenger transport sector.

“This is reflected by the fact we offer a ten-year warranty as standard.

“However, the introduction of the cobots has taken this to a new level, enabling us to further enhance our testing capability.

“They produce a report giving Hanover full traceability, detailing when the product was tested and its test results.”

Production test engineer manager Gaurav Bijlani said the new robots are taking the company into the 21st century.

“The end result for our clients is even greater reliability, a faster turnaround for orders and the ability to draw on the positive benefits they have delivered for our staff,” he said.

“[They] have been freed up to operate in roles which bring even more innovation and support to the business.

“The cobots have improved our efficiency and processes, thereby creating a continuous improvement culture.”

Hanover’s Lewes and Illinois, USA, production sites produce more than 45,000 signs per year for customers in more than 75 companies. Mainly selling information systems to the public transport industry. It also makes products for vehicle manufacturers.