WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Gadgets that once only appeared in science-fiction movies are now commonplace in western Massachusetts industrial plants.

22News saw the latest gadgetry vital to keeping American industry moving ahead. It’s at EASTEC on the Big E grounds in West Springfield, the biggest industrial show in the Northeast.

Rhode Island based Hexagon specializes in robotic equipment, we’re assured the extra hand around the plant won’t put anyone out of work.

“What it’s going to do is make people more efficient and make more parts, be able to get more jobs going and redirect where people need to spend their energy.”

The probe scanner sells for more than $200,000. We’re told factories all over the world now have them as standard equipment. The probe scanner can see inside industrial components that escapes the naked eye.

“Today your cars last a long longer than they ever did in the 70s when I started driving. Back then 50,000 miles are a lot, today 200,000 miles is nothing,” said Doug Sutphin of Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence.

The three day EASTEC show at the Big E attracts its share of potential customers, but also those of us fascinated by technology and glimpse into America’s place in the highly competitive industrial world.