BOSTON – Realtime Robotics, which is developing responsive motion planning for industrial robots and autonomous vehicles, today announced it raised $11.7 million in Series A Funding. Led by SPARX Asset Management, the round included participation from Mitsubishi Electric Corp., Hyundai Motor Company, and OMRON Ventures.
Existing investors Toyota AI Ventures, Scrum Ventures, and the Duke Angel Network also participated in the round. The company said the new funding will be used to “accelerate the development of more commercial product releases and expand the team to support key customers and partners across the globe.”
Multiple markets, robots
The company said its solutions can help eliminate obstacles to widespread adoption of advanced automation in the industrial, agriculture, food service, construction, healthcare, and consumer markets. “Despite the growing demand for automation, today’s robots are not safe or smart enough to navigate in dynamic, unstructured environments without costly safeguards and oversight,” the company said in a statement. “Realtime Robotics’ solutions eliminate these challenges and enable robots to work at a productive pace.”
The company’s specialized computer processor and software enables machines, including industrial, collaborative robots, and autonomous vehicles, to evaluate millions of alternative motion paths to avoid a collision and choose the optimal route before making a move, all in milliseconds. Realtime released its first commercial system, RapidPlan and RapidSense, earlier this year.
“The commitment garnered from strategic investors reflects both the need and the demand for smarter robots,” said Peter Howard, CEO of Realtime Robotics. “Our technology transforms the way machines interact with both people and other machines. Robots will now be able to take on a wide range of new tasks, and manufacturers will finally benefit from the productivity and efficiency gains that increased automation has promised, but failed to deliver.”
Realtime Robotics was founded in 2016 by Duke University professors Dan Sorin, George Konidaris and researchers Sean Murray and Will Floyd-Jones. The company was based on its groundbreaking DARPA-funded research in motion planning.