Fraunhofer's High-Speed Logistics Robots Set to Outperform Humanoids

Fraunhofer’s High-Speed Logistics Robots Set to Outperform Humanoids

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In the world of robotics, humanoid robots have been stealing the limelight recently. However, these early humanoid robots may not be able to match the capabilities of Fraunhofer’s self-balancing evoBOT, which is faster and more efficient. Moreover, Fraunhofer has also developed an autonomous, omnidirectional O³dyn pallet jack that is expected to revolutionize the logistics and warehousing industry.

Humanoid robots are often designed based on the human body shape, which may not be the best form for early use cases in flat-floored warehouses and factories. As a result, companies like Boston Dynamics have focused on developing robots like Spot and Stretch, which are better suited for these environments. Fraunhofer Institute has taken a similar approach with its logistics robots.

While humanoid robots may eventually walk at a speed of 5-6 km/h (3-4 mph) and carry a payload of around 20 kg, the evoBOT is already capable of reaching speeds of up to 60 km/h (37 mph) on its extendable legs and lifting up to 65 kg (143 lb) with its self-locking lifting arms. This means the evoBOT can perform three times the lifting work, at ten times the speed of humanoid robots.

The evoBOT can carry up to 100 kg (220 lb) when loaded by someone else and it demonstrates impressive precision in placing objects, as shown in a video where it stacks crates. While its grippers are less dexterous than human hands, the rotating, circular design allows the evoBOT to lift objects straight up and over without turning them upside down. This makes it possible for even a waist-high robot to access chest-high shelves.

The evoBOT is compact, lightweight (around 40 kg or 88 lb), and runs on a battery charge for up to 8 hours. It is also capable of handling slopes up to 45 degrees, even on uneven ground. If it falls over, it can easily recover and get back up.

Fraunhofer recently conducted a successful test of the evoBOT at Munich Airport, where it demonstrated its speed, agility, and muscle. Additionally, Fraunhofer has developed the O³dyn robot, an autonomous pallet jack capable of operating both indoors and outdoors. This robot uses omni-directional Mecanum wheels and air suspension to navigate its environment. It can carry loads of up to 350 kg (772 lb) and has the potential to handle up to 1,300 kg (2,866 lb) once it reaches production.

While the O³dyn system is still being refined to handle obstacles, it is equipped with an emergency brake system that can bring the robot to an immediate standstill. This robot shows promise in efficiently maneuvering in tight spaces and is set to revolutionize the logistics industry.

In conclusion, Fraunhofer’s high-speed logistics robots are poised to outperform humanoid robots in terms of speed, efficiency, and agility. With its evoBOT and O³dyn robots, Fraunhofer is leading the way in revolutionizing the logistics and warehousing industry.

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  1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
  2. We have leveraged AI tools to mine information and compile it