Conference to be held January 21-24 in Chicago.

Conference registration is now open for Automate 2013 ( www.automate2013.com), North America’s leading automation event that takes place January 21-24 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

“The 2013 Conference is the strongest we’ve ever put together,” says Jeff Burnstein, president of the association for advancing automation, the main organizer of Automate 2013.

“We’re gearing many sessions to small and medium sized companies who are new users or considering using robotics, vision, motion control and other automation technologies,” Burnstein asserts. One of the featured sessions highlights small company executives who have successfully automated in order to become stronger global competitors.  Speakers include Drew Greenblatt, president, Marlin Steel, Torben Christensen, president, Wiscon Products and Matt Tyler, president  & CEO, Vickers Engineering.

“I think companies considering automating will find this session fascinating because it will provide real-world examples of companies who would have had to either go out of business or send manufacturing offshore but instead succeeded by automating,” Burnstein says.

Other key topics covered in the conference include the fundamentals of robotics and the fundamentals of vision, new developments in industrial robot safety, new motor and drive technologies, robotics system integration, motion control technology for increasing throughput and practical applications using vision guided robots.

More than 75 industry experts from around the world will give presentations at the five-day conference (ending January 25). Keynote speakers include Steve Forbes, chairman and editor-in-chief of Forbes Media and Henrik Christensen, director of robotics at Georgia Institute of Technology.

Professionals in the vision industry can take special classes that are required to earn the highly-coveted Certified Vision Professional (CVP) designation. The CVP is offered at both the Basic and Advanced Levels, with testing also offered at Automate 2013.

The Automate conference is accompanied by a four-day trade show featuring exhibits from some 150 leading automation companies. It offers a broad-range of automation solutions for packaging, welding, assembly, material removal, inspection, painting & coating and other leading applications.

Burnstein says the front of the show is dedicated to exhibits from system integrators, the ideal starting point for users just beginning to investigate automation or those looking for new ideas. “The integrators are the ones who put successful solutions together, so they are extremely important to the user community,” he notes.

Another show-floor highlight will be Expert Huddles, small group discussions on key topics of interest to users. “These huddles will feature industry experts leading the discussion – among the topics will be return on investment, the best first tasks for automation and how to select a system integrator. We expect to have more than 75 huddles throughout the show and all of them are free to show and conference attendees.”

Trade show attendance is free (16 and over required). Fees are required for the Automate 2013 conference.