The Pittsburgh Robotics Network announces its support for the Inaugural Robotics Factory Event: The Aviation & Robotics Summit

Feb 23, 2023 | News, Press Releases

Summit to Address Toughest Challenges in Aviation with Robotics Solutions

Pittsburgh, PA – Feb. 23, 2023 – The Pittsburgh Robotics Network (PRN) is proud to announce its support as a co-host of the Robotics Factory’s Aviation & Robotics Summit, which will take place April 18-20. The PRN joins Innovation Works, which leads and manages the Robotics Factory, along with industry partners Pittsburgh International Airport and its xBridge innovation center as well as Future Travel Experience to bring the best minds in robotics and aviation together for three days of workshops, tours and networking. This strategic collaboration will enable the connections and collaborations necessary to create and develop robotics solutions for the aviation industry’s toughest challenges.

The Aviation and Robotics Summit will consist of an interdisciplinary series of workshops, industry site tours, and networking events for participants from around the world. The invitation-only summit will ensure maximum collaboration in both industries, helping participants understand the strategic challenges and opportunities available.

The Aviation & Robotics Summit is by invitation only to maximize the collaboration between aviation industry executives and robotics technologists. However, media will be invited to cover a kick-off introduction and professional networking session on Tuesday, April 18, the evening before the workshops begin and hosted by the Pittsburgh Robotics Network. The workshops that will take place over the subsequent two days are designed to create a mutual understanding of industry needs and innovation possibilities, helping participants to understand strategic challenges and propose solutions for the most pressing industry-related issues.

“It’s the PRN’s mission to connect this world leading robotics community with a wide array of industry sectors. By pairing robotics thought leaders with aviation experts, we aim to create an environment where autonomous technologies can be applied to current and future challenges in the aviation industry,” said Joel Reed, President of the Pittsburgh Robotics Network. “Pittsburgh has long been the frontier of our country’s innovation. Along with our partners, we continue to build on that history by applying new technologies in robotics, automation, and artificial intelligence to transform the future of aviation.”

Launched in early 2023 by Innovation Works, the Robotics Factory is a part of the Southwestern Pennsylvania New Economy Collaborative with the support of the Pittsburgh Robotics Network to further develop the global prominence of Pittsburgh’s robotics industry. The Robotics Factory has three main areas of programmatic focus:

  • Create robotics startups to meet industry-identified needs; 
  • Accelerate robotics and related technology companies’ growth through investment, tailored expertise, and access to networks;
  • Scale companies by helping design and manufacture their products for regional and domestic manufacture. 

To learn more about the Robotics Factory, visit Technology and innovation focused professionals and executives within the aviation industry are encouraged to learn more about and register for the Aviation & Robotics Summit at

About Innovation Works

Innovation Works (IW) is the Pittsburgh region’s most active investor in and supporter of early-stage companies developing hardware, software and life sciences technologies.  Though focused exclusively on helping startups in the southwest PA region, IW’s level of investment activity makes it one of the most active investors in the U.S.  Innovation Works is part of the statewide Ben Franklin Technology Partners, a network of four centers developed to help diversify PA’s economy and retain the state’s high caliber innovations that are invented and incubated here.  The Ben Franklin Technology Partners are partially funded by the Commonwealth of PA and overseen by the Department of Community and Economic Development. To date, IW has financially supported over 700 companies that have brought in an additional $3.3 billion in outside funding, making it one of the most productive uses of state dollars.

About the Pittsburgh Robotics Network
The Pittsburgh Robotics Network (PRN) represents the companies and leaders who make up the Pittsburgh robotics ecosystem, which is anchored by Carnegie Mellon University and driven by 130+ robotics organizations developing applications for over 12 commercial industry sectors. It is the PRN’s mission to accelerate the adoption of robotic solutions by bridging this large and dynamic community, to the world. The PRN executes this by making connections, expanding collective knowledge and positively influencing the advancement of robotic and artificial intelligence technologies.

About xBridge
Launched in 2020, xBridge is Pittsburgh International Airport’s proving ground for technologies and startups that solve for needs in today’s airport and industry as well as tests and incubates strategic technologies that could be deployed in the future. The proof-of-concept and pilot site showcases new technologies in a real-world operating environment. The xBridge is designed to capitalize on and grow the region’s powerful tech economy right at the airport for the aviation industry and beyond.  xBridge has partnered with firms ranging from global Fortune 500 companies to local startups for projects that have tackled air purification, deployed robotic floor scrubbers and applied artificial intelligence to security wait times.

About Future Travel Experience
Future Travel Experience (FTE) is renowned in the aviation industry for its in-person and digital events, online media, innovation accelerator, working groups and industry change initiatives. FTE brings together the most progressive airlines, airports, vendors, government agencies, destination partners and various other travel industry stakeholders to share their latest passenger experience and business performance plans and visions, and collectively define the future of the sector. Having started with a standalone event in North America in 2006, FTE is now part of the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) and hosts four annual events around the world – FTE Global, FTE APEX Asia Expo, FTE EMEA and FTE Ancillary & Retailing, plus in-person and online meet-ups for FTE Digital, Innovation and Startup Hub and FTE Baggage Innovation Working Group members, as well as additional specialist  events. FTE engages with 50,000+ global industry executives on a weekly basis and its events attract thousands of senior attendees, as well as the leading suppliers and service providers in the field as exhibitors. To learn more, visit: