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New Partnerships And Innovations Taking Mobile Robotics To Next Level

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Mobile Robotic
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Robots capable of locomotion has always been a dream. Mobile robots are usually controlled by software and use various sensors and gears to identify and move around their surroundings. Mobile robots are a perfect amalgam of artificial intelligence and physical robotics. What’s more, with the advent of AI, mobile robotics can learn more with each step they take.

With one-time fictional concepts such as the delivery robot and self-driving cars are now part of the lives to some extent. Mobile robotics such as unmanned ground, aerial vehicles, and autonomous underwater vehicles are just a couple of examples. According to a research firm, Allied Market Research, the global mobile robotics market is estimated to reach $14.49 billion by 2026 with CAGR of 19.4% from 2019 to 2026. The recent upsurge in demand for mobile logistics by online retailers, the emergence of industry 4.0 in warehouse and logistics would be the major drivers.

Mobile robotics is emerging as a surprise in recent times. Developers are thinking of several novel ways to incorporate it in the system outside the industrial environment in several domains. Moreover, it is now referred to as a fast-evolving and solution-driven industry, involving much more than multiple software and hardware. Recently, the well-known automaker Ford acquired Quantum Signal to develop remote control software. In other news, Fetch Robotics raised colossal funding for mobile robots. The trend of mobile robotics is never-ending. Honeywell, the company that has been incorporating robotics in its ecosystem has now added a few more robots to cut down errors and improve efficiency.

Ford acquired the mobile robotic company

Ford, the American automaker company, recently acquired Quantum Signal, a small Michigan-based mobile robotics company. Quantum Signal has been known for its mobile robots that have clients including the U.S. military. What’s more, the company’s specialty is in developing remote control software for robotic automotive. Quantum Signal is also responsible for highly regarded simulated testing and development environment for autonomous robotic systems.

This is the prime reason behind Ford’s acquisition of Quantum Signal, as the company would help Ford in developing and deploying autonomous cars. In Ford’s blog post, it stated that Ford has been closely monitoring Quantum Signal and the work it has done. Quantum Signal would help Ford to build real-time simulation and algorithms for a driverless-cars control system. Moreover, Ford aims to take helping the hand of Quantum Signal to develop transportation-as-a-service platform along with software and hardware for autonomous vehicles and the platform.

Fetch Robotics bagged huge funding for mobile robots

Fetch Robotics Inc., the California-based company that deploys Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMRs), recently bagged around $46 million in Series C funding and till date it has raised around $94 million. The company was named as one of the top 10 ROS-based robotics companies in 2019 and had previously raised around $25 million in Series B round in 2017. The round was led by Fort Ross Ventures along with Softbank Capital, O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures, Redwood Technologies, TransLink Capital, and Zebra Ventures.

Melonee Wise, the CEO of Fetch Robotics, stated, “Clients have responded well to our unique Cloud Robotics solution and we need to continue growing and improving offering”. According to the CEO, the competitive pressure has never been tougher like today’s age. Moreover, the company’s autonomous mobile robots and cloud platform offer the customers to meet their demands while keeping in financial objectives in check.

Fetch stated the new funding would be used for international expansion and improving capabilities of its Cloud Robotics platform that manages deployment and integration of the company’s AMRs to customer operations. In addition, the platform is expected to analyze the data gathered by AMRs to assist customers in gaining more insights into their operations and more operational efficiency. Along with the announcement of new funding, Fetch introduced new customer, Universal Logistics Holdings, a provider of customized transportation and logistics solutions for Fortune 500 manufacturers as well as retailers.

Honeywell incorporating mobile robotics error-free material handling

Honeywell is keeping its manufacturing processes agile and lean with the help of Mobile Industrial Robots (MiR). Moreover, Honeywell is optimizing workflow by automating the transfer of materials throughout the facility. Honeywell has been using mobile robotics for delivering materials from manufacturing lines to its warehouse, which involves several challenges for robots such as narrow corridors and double fire doors. Now, the company expected to include flexible logistics solution to navigate autonomously and move the robots close to people and for this MiR was the best suitable choice.

Since 2016, Honeywell has upgraded itself in terms of mobile robotics. It has developed a conveyor system for a fully autonomous workflow that involves minimal human interaction. Today, Honeywell has around 15 delivery stations in the production area offered by MiR. This automated workflow has helped eliminate the risk of human errors and the RFID tags and scanners ensure that the robots take products to the correct line.

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