What is a delta robot + what do they do best?

April 3, 2024
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The unique benefits of delta robots

Delta robots are fantastic for many industrial applications thanks to their unique design and abilities.

Let’s take a closer look at why: 

  • Blink and you’ll miss ‘em. Delta robots are known for being extremely fast, precise, and agile — their lightweight arms can accelerate and decelerate quickly, allowing them to pick, place, and assemble objects at blazing speeds Some delta robots can achieve up to 300 picks per minute! This high-speed capability makes delta robots excellent for high-volume production applications like packaging, palletizing, and assembly.
  • As compact and space-efficient as they come. Delta robots have a very small footprint relative to the size of their work envelope. Their triangular base and vertical arms basically need little floor space. This compact and space-efficient design is perfect for factories and warehouses where space is limited. The arms can also fold up when not in use to save space.
  • As precise as they are fast. In addition to speed, delta robots are also extremely accurate and precise. Their rigid arms provide a fixed-length kinematic chain between the base and end-effector, enabling high precision and repeatability. When properly calibrated, delta robots can achieve accuracies of 0.1 millimeters or better; this high precision makes them well-suited for delicate assembly tasks, precision micromanipulation, and other applications that require micron-level accuracy.
  • Lower maintenance than they look. Delta robots have few moving parts, mainly just three lightweight arms and an end-effector. This simplistic design reduces wear and tear and requires little maintenance. Plus, they don’t need frequent lubrication and have a long lifespan.
  • Super strength. Although delta robots are compact, their overhead design gives them a high payload capacity for their size. As a result, they can easily lift and move heavy loads due to their mechanical advantage — some delta robots can handle payloads of up to 60 kilograms or more!

Delta vs Cartesian vs SCARA vs Articulated

Feeling a little lost about the pros and cons of each type of robot? You’re not alone! Let’s break things down a bit to make your life easier:







Lightning-fast, ideal for high-speed tasks

High precision and repeatability

Excellent for high-speed and precise assembly tasks

Best flexibility, allows complex movements


Limited range of motion, primarily below the base

Slower, more limited range of motion

Limited range of motion, smaller workspace

Slower, potentially less precise, more expensive






Best for

Repetitive assembly or packaging where speed is a priority

Simple transport, palletizing, dispensing where precision is key

Assembly operations emphasizing speed and accuracy within a defined area

Applications like welding, painting, assembly where adaptability is crucial


Delta robots

  • Pros: Lightning-fast, ideal for high-speed pick and place tasks within a smaller footprint.
  • Cons: Range of motion somewhat limited, primarily access items directly below the base.
  • Pricing: Generally moderately priced, often less expensive than articulated robots, but more than Cartesian.
  • Best for: Repetitive assembly or packaging where extreme speed is the top priority.

Cartesian robots

  • Pros: High precision and repeatability due to rigid structure and movement along linear axes.
  • Cons: Slower than delta or articulated robots, with a more limited range of motion.
  • Pricing: Tend to be the most affordable robot type due to their simpler design.
  • Best for: Simple transport, palletizing, and dispensing where precision matters more than speed.

SCARA robots 

  • Pros: Excellent for high-speed and precise assembly tasks due to their structure and parallel arm segments.
  • Cons: Limited range of motion compared to articulated robots, smaller overall workspace.
  • Pricing: Moderately priced, typically falling between Cartesian and articulated robots.
  • Best for: Screw driving, nut fastening, press fitting, and other assembly operations emphasizing speed and accuracy within a defined area.

Articulated robots

  • Pros: The best flexibility with multiple rotary joints, allowing complex movements and object manipulation.
  • Cons: Slower, potentially less precise, and generally more expensive than other options.
  • Pricing: Often the most expensive robot type due to their complexity, but you can find extremely well-priced alternatives, like Standard Bots’ RO1
  • Best for: Welding, painting, assembly, and palletizing applications where their adaptability far outweighs their drawbacks.

In the end, neither delta robots nor any other type can do it all (or with the same capabilities). You’ll have to carefully weigh your options and budget to assess whether a delta or other robot arm type is the right fit for your shop floor. 

Summing up

Now you know what a delta robot is, how it works, and what it does best. 

With its fast speed, high precision, and lightweight design, the delta robot is an excellent choice for a wide variety of industrial applications. 

Though, yes, it’s not as versatile as some other robot types, the delta shines in industries like food processing, pharmaceuticals, and consumer goods, where its strengths align well with common tasks. 

With a basic understanding of delta robot capabilities under your belt, you can determine if this is the right fit for your shop floor. 

Then, it’s just a matter of choosing the right application, assessing your budget, making a purchase, integrating your new delta arm with your assembly line, and watching your productivity soar! 

Next steps 

Looking for an alternative to a delta robot? Standard Bots' RO1 redefines six-axis articulated robot arm technology, ideal for ambitious startups and established enterprises alike.

  • Affordable innovation: RO1 disrupts the market with its budget-friendly price, slashing typical automation costs by half and making it accessible for operations of all sizes.
  • Best-in-class performance: With a robust 18 kg payload capacity, lightning-fast speed, and top-of-the-line accuracy, RO1 sets a new standard for productivity.
  • Safety-centric design: Built with collaboration in mind, RO1 features advanced sensors and safeguards for seamless teamwork between humans and robots on the shop floor.
  • AI-powered adaptability: Equipped with intelligence rivaling GPT-4, RO1 stands apart with its ability to learn and optimize processes over time, ensuring continuous improvement.

Our expert team is dedicated to guiding you through RO1's implementation, ensuring a smooth transition to its transformative capabilities. Experience it firsthand with our 30-day risk-free trial!

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