Transport robots integrated in warehouse logistics • Deep learning combined with stereoscopic cameras
Global logistics service provider DB Schenker has introduced autonomous robots from the manufacturer Gideon Brothers at its location in Leipzig. DB Schenker is thus relying on the flexible solution for automating logistics processes in existing warehouses. The robots, which are equipped with cutting-edge technology, allow productivity gains without the need to modify facilities.
“In our drive to offer strategic advantages for our clients in the increasingly complex digital environment, DB Schenker continuously explores opportunities to integrate innovations from visionary start-up companies”, said Xavier Garijo, Member of the Board for Contract Logistics at Schenker AG. “Delivering automation possibilities for logistics and warehouse operations is a foundation for building the next generation supply chain."
Gideon Brothers’ autonomous logistics robot is equipped with a Visual Perception-based Robot Autonomy System, which combines deep learning with stereoscopic cameras to create the next generation of robot vision. With this revolutionary AI-powered visual perception it is designed to navigate safely around employees and equipment as well as other moving machines. The robots are capable of moving a load 800 kg each and are using a hot- swappable battery system, allowing minimum downtime for recharging.
The robots are being piloted in DB Schenker's Leipzig warehouse, to automate tasks associated with regular order fulfillment, speeding it up and allowing employees to focus on more complex tasks. A few weeks into the project, DB Schenker expanded the pilot by adding a significant number of new pick-up and drop-off points. The flexibility of the system is showcased by the fact that both the expansion and the ongoing fine-tuning has been undertaken by DB Schenker staff. In the first month of the pilot, a typical distance covered by a robot surpassed 26 km per week. The results of the pilot project will be evaluated in detail after completion.
“Our machines perceive the world just like we do – by processing visual inputs and understanding what surrounds them and how it relates to their tasks,” Matija Kopić, CEO and Co-Founder of Gideon Brothers, said. “This is a technological leap. Self-driving machines, powered by vision and AI, will succeed where earlier technology failed – it will become ubiquitous in industrial environments.”