Picking robots -- ready for primetime?

Source: Soft Robotics Inc.

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Supply chain automation has evolved significantly in the past few years, from mobile platforms to picking robots. Robotic manipulation has become more flexible, and industry demand is driving adoption of collaborative robot arms and a wide variety of grippers.

Collaborative robot or cobot suppliers, integrators, and end users must identify the best uses for end-of-arm tooling for particular applications.

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This webcast is sponsored by Soft Robotics.

In this free webcast, Robotics Business Review Senior Editor Eugene Demaitre talks with Carl Vause, CEO of 2018 RBR50 company Soft Robotics Inc., about the state of the art for pick-and-place robots. They discuss how the market for picking robots is growing, as well as the challenges facing organizations that must evaluate the best grippers for their needs.

Picking robots are already in use in food processing, e-commerce order fulfillment, retail and groceries, and packaging. The webcast will look at major suppliers including Soft Robotics, Robotiq, and Schunk, different types of end effectors such as soft grippers, and the best applications for each.

Picking robots plus machine learning

As important as hardware is for cobots and picking robots, sensors and computer vision and machine learning software are necessary for identifying and handling a wide range of objects, notes Vause. The data sets, algorithms, and connections with other systems via the Internet of Things (IoT) are also important.

Soft Robotics CEO Carl Vause

Carl Vause, CEO of Soft Robotics

In addition to example use cases, industry leader Vause will discuss challenges from the operating environment, variability, and working alongside humans. End users should also remember integration and how many and what types of items they need to move quickly and accurately.

Webcast viewers can also learn about the opportunities for warehouses, where employers such as Amazon need to supplement human workers to meet consumer expectations for speed and accuracy.

They also examine the potential for the robotics as a service (RaaS) model for managing expenses, how new grippers are widening adoption, and other markets for picking robots such as fruit picking and healthcare.


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