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Rethink Robotics inks deals with three new distributors

Robert White, principal mechanical engineer at Rethink Robotics, showed off Baxter, an industrial robot designed to work along with humans on production lines.
Robert White, principal mechanical engineer at Rethink Robotics, showed off Baxter, an industrial robot designed to work along with humans on production lines.(File photo: ARAM BOGHOSIAN FOR THE BOSTON GLOBE)

Rethink Robotics, a Boston company known for its Baxter line of industrial robots, said Tuesday that it has partnered with three new distributors as it looks to get its robots into more universities, schools, and corporate research-and-development labs worldwide.

Baxter is now deployed in 18 countries and is used in such applications as manufacturing, health care, and education. Early Baxters have been used for simple repetitive production-line tasks such as sorting and loading, a May story in the Globe noted.

The new distributors are RobotShop and Teq, both in North America, and Shanghai-based Gaitech International, Rethink Robotics said in a press release.

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‘‘Students as young as 10 years old are training Baxter and developing the skills they’ll need on the job from the very start of their education,’’ company chief executive Scott Eckert said in a statement. ‘‘By the time they enter the workforce, robots will be integrated into nearly every industry, as we see in manufacturing today. These children will have an important advantage - experience - thanks to the K-12 schools, colleges, and universities that are investing in robotics now.’’


Chris Reidy can be reached at reidy@globe.com.