stanford arm

1962 saw the introduction of "Versatran" -- a cylindrical robot, named after the words "versatile" and "transfer." Six of the machines were installed at the Ford factory in Canton, Ohio, each boasting five axes of motion, allowing for 25 individual movements.

Robotics continued to become more sophisticated throughout the decade, and in 1969 American engineer Victor Scheinman invented the "Stanford Arm" -- a six-axis, computer-controlled electronic arm, pictured. It was later used to build a Ford water pump and was a milestone in the design of industrial robots.

First published April 29, 2015: 5:41 AM ET

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