There will be 35 million autonomous trucks on the road by 2020, says Frost

Business consultancy Frost & Sullivan expects 35 million connected and autonomous trucks will be on the roads by 2020.

Connected trucks will be integral to future logistics and freight operations as smart trucks will be a necessity in smart cities, says Frost.

And in what may be a controversial prediction Frost says: “By 2020, 35 million trucks are expected to be connected with digital freight solutions and autonomous technologies, transforming the trucking industry into a smarter, efficient and more productive sector.”  Continue reading There will be 35 million autonomous trucks on the road by 2020, says Frost

SoftKinetic to showcase DepthSense gesture control solution at Frankfurt motor show

SoftKinetic is to showcase its DepthSense gesture control and in-cabin monitoring solutions at the Frankfurt International Motor Show event, scheduled for mid-September. 

SoftKinetic, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony, says its DepthSense system “paves the way to autonomous driving”.

The provider of 3D vision and gesture recognition technologies says manufacturers need to embrace innovation and compete at the level of hi-tech companies.  Continue reading SoftKinetic to showcase DepthSense gesture control solution at Frankfurt motor show

High-end vehicle simulation: Ansible Motion chooses Heason Technology as motion control partner

Ansible Motion, a designer and manufacturer of advanced driver-in-the-loop simulators, has chosen Heason Technology as its motion control supplier.

Ansible’s heritage is closely associated with the motorsports industry, but nowadays also serving major road car and speciality vehicle manufacturers.

The company’s DIL solutions are available in a variety of form factors from test bench models with steering force feedback to highly dynamic 6 degrees of freedom simulators combining software, mechatronics, video and audio for a truly immersive multi-sensory experience.  Continue reading High-end vehicle simulation: Ansible Motion chooses Heason Technology as motion control partner

Ingram Micro investing $10 million in warehouse automation startup HDS Global

Computer technology provider Ingram Micro is to invest $10 million into warehouse automation startup HDS Global, according to a report on the Wall Street Journal

HDS is said to be developing “swarm” software which enables different robotic systems to work together in warehouses.

Ingram, which claims to be the world’s largest distributor of computer and technology products, handles online orders for large retailers such as Wal-Mart.  Continue reading Ingram Micro investing $10 million in warehouse automation startup HDS Global

Opinion: Materials handling automation and robotics requires IIoT monitoring

By John Hayes, Vecna Robotics

There is a frequent complaint of Industry 4.0, Big Data, and the Industrial Internet of Things. Too much data, little of which can be accessed and used effectively.

From tuggers, automated guided carts, and automated guided vehicles, there is a real need to include IIoT monitoring which defines the next phase of automation and robotics in materials handling.

Without IIoT monitoring, plant managers, operations managers, logistics coordinators throughout manufacturing and distribution sectors lack the data collected which offers real-time continuous status and health information.  Continue reading Opinion: Materials handling automation and robotics requires IIoT monitoring

DHL could stop Amazon from taking over the world. Probably

It’s not a glamorous business, logistics. Doesn’t make the mainstream news very often. And it’s not likely to be the top career choice for most people. 

It’s understandable. After all, how interesting can it be to move boxes from point A to point B?

Put like that, it’s not much to write home about. But now, with driverless vehicles everywhere, augmented reality glasses and exoskeletons for warehouse workers, and robotics and automation technologies of all kinds promising to transform the industry worldwide, logistics is about to get much more interesting.  Continue reading DHL could stop Amazon from taking over the world. Probably

DHL invests in four new Sawyer collaborative robots from Rethink Robotics

DHL has invested in four new Sawyer robots in order to evaluate the solution as part of its robotics research and development programme.

The company describes the purchase of the Sawyer robots as “the first step” in its robotics deployment journey.

DHL says the collaborative robots will be flexibly used across its 19 contract packing, or “co-packing”, and production logistics centres across the UK and Ireland region.  Continue reading DHL invests in four new Sawyer collaborative robots from Rethink Robotics

Mazda to make all its vehicles autonomous by 2025

Mazda has stated its intention to make all of its vehicles autonomous by 2025 as part of a broader plan to transform the entire company by 2030.

The company says it will “begin testing of autonomous driving technologies currently being developed in line with Mazda’s human-centered Mazda Co-Pilot Concept in 2020, aiming to make the system standard on all models by 2025”.

Mazda says it wants to build cars that “provide safety peace of mind”, and that provide “unrestricted mobility to people everywhere”.  Continue reading Mazda to make all its vehicles autonomous by 2025

Qualcomm and Apple’s legal battle may indicate the future of cars, as Foxconn looks to build driverless tech factory

The legal battle between Qualcomm and Apple may portend the future direction of car technology.

Qualcomm says Apple manufacturers are not paying the correct amount of money for the chipmaker’s intellectual property the iPhone maker is licensing – basically they’re not paying anything.

The lower, or absent, payments probably account for Qualcomm’s patent licensing business falling 42 per cent this year, according to CNBC.  Continue reading Qualcomm and Apple’s legal battle may indicate the future of cars, as Foxconn looks to build driverless tech factory

Intel to build fleet of 100 autonomous vehicles

Determined not to miss out like it did on the smartphone revolution, Intel is developing 100 of its own autonomous cars. 

Intel is still the largest chipmaker in the world in many sectors but in mobile computing technology, other companies have taken the lead.

But there’s not many things as mobile as a road-going vehicle, and newer versions of them need more chips than ever.  Continue reading Intel to build fleet of 100 autonomous vehicles

Autonomous sea-going vessels likely to be launched before driverless cars

The vast majority of the world’s goods are shipped – quite literally – by sea. According to the International Maritime Organization, 90 per cent of the world’s trade is carried by ships and boats. 

The IMO adds that the sea “is, by far, the most cost-effective way to move en masse goods and raw materials around the world”.

So while we’re all waiting for drones and driverless vehicles to deliver our online shopping orders by road and by air, it seems the really big trends are all at sea.  Continue reading Autonomous sea-going vessels likely to be launched before driverless cars

Continental sends out autonomous minibus for a driverless drive

Continental, a company which provides a range of automotive solutions such as tyres and advanced driver assistance systems, has been showing off its new autonomous minibus. 

The company calls the vehicle Cube, short for Continental Urban Mobility Experience, and describes it as a “robo-taxi”.

This particular trial of the driverless minibus took place in Frankfurt, Germany.  Continue reading Continental sends out autonomous minibus for a driverless drive

Kiva Systems developers launch new company and their own logistics robot

Kiva Systems was a company that built a mobile robot for logistics operations, mainly for use in warehouses. It was a basically a small platform on wheels, and proved popular throughout the industry.

But then it got bought out by Amazon, which initially said it would still sell it to the rest of the logistics industry but actually didn’t. Instead it rebranded Kiva as Amazon Robotics and turned it into a business unit of its own.

The online retail giant now has one of the largest number of robots in operation of any company in the world.

But two former executives at Kiva Systems – Jerome Dubois and Rylan Hamilton – have now launched a new company and a range of new logistics automation solutions.  Continue reading Kiva Systems developers launch new company and their own logistics robot

Opec and big oil eyeing electric cars with trepidation, says Bloomberg

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Opec, and big oil companies around the world are looking at the growing popularity of electric cars anew, and revising their forecasts, according to a new report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance

The prospect of a massive trend that shows consumers turning away from petrol-driven vehicles would have huge implications for the oil industry.

Petrol-driven vehicles account for almost half of oil production demand, according to the US Department of Energy, while other sources say it’s more than 50 per cent.  Continue reading Opec and big oil eyeing electric cars with trepidation, says Bloomberg

Bharati Robotics shows off autonomous industrial cleaning robot

bharati agv crop
The Bharati autonomous guided vehicle for materials transport

Bharati Robotics Systems has been showing off its new autonomous industrial floor cleaning robots. 

The company says the small vehicle saves labour costs and increases productivity by up to 200 per cent, and cleans the floor better than humans, or the “highest quality of cleaning”.

The robot’s battery lasts up to four hours on one charge and it has a smartphone interface through which it can be monitored and controlled.  Continue reading Bharati Robotics shows off autonomous industrial cleaning robot