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.
Universities are doing a lot of interesting work in the area of robotics, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Stanford are two of the most active in the field.
Both universities showed similar robots this week, MIT’s being a bottle-shaped device which checks pipes and Stanford’s one a machine which is said to grow like a vine.
According to DigitalTrends.com, MIT’s PipeGuard team recently won $10,000 in the university’s competition and swims through pipes to detect any problems.
The YouTube video for the device (above) describes as a “leak detection robot for city water distribution systems”.
Stanford, which also made a video (below) of its strange plant- or worm-like organic robot, if it can be called that, said its invention “could be useful in search and rescue and medical applications”.
Commercial customers for the robots are probably already lined up and perhaps the two teams could spin out into startup companies.
A human eye transmits data to the brain at a rate of approximately 10 million bits a second, which is about the equivalent of the capacity of some Ethernet connections.
This was the finding of a study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and while that may be debatable, and perhaps doesn’t tell the whole story of the complexity of the human eye, it’s probably a widely accepted idea that our eyes collect and transmit more data than do our other “sensors”, if they can be called that – the ones for sound, touch, smell and taste – which, with sight, make up our five human senses.
The global market for agricultural robots is forecast to exceed $5 billion by 2024, according to a report.
The Global Agriculture Robots Market Report, published by Variant Market Research, predicts the global market will reach $5,214 million by 2024 from $968 million in 2016 – growing at an annual rate of 23.4 per cent from 2016 to 2024.
Brain Corp, an artificial intelligence company specializing in the development of self-driving technology for robots, has raised $114 million in a Series C funding round led by the SoftBank Vision Fund.
Brain has developed AI and self-driving technology to enable robots to perceive their environment, learn to control their motion, and navigate using visual cues and landmarks while avoiding people and obstacles.
Rethink Robotics has signed deals with nine distribution partners throughout the United States and Europe to extend the availability of its smart, collaborative robots.
With an extensive network throughout the world – including partners in the US, UK, Germany, France, Spain, China, Korea, Japan, Mexico and Australia – these distribution deals are part of Rethink’s efforts to meet growing demand across the globe, bringing flexible automation to the global manufacturing market.
A private group of startup robots is planning to go to the moon and mine it for water and minerals to sell to humans back on Earth, according to a report on TheVerge.com.
The commercial company backing the alien space robots, Moon Express, says it’s long dreamed of seeing robots dig holes in the moon’s surface and bring up priceless treasures they can sell for a lot of money.
TUV Rheinland was invited to attend Shanghai International Industrial Automation & Robot Exhibition 2017 earlier this month, and held thematic lectures on the “New Engine of Smart Society – Robots and Inspection & Certification Services for Robot Systems” during the exhibition.
Shu Xu, unit general manager of commercial products of TUV Rheinland Greater China, officially released in the lecture a white paper on industrial robotics and cyber security, drawing considerable interest of many exhibitors, media and professionals in the world of robotics.
Industrial technology company Wärtsilä and the world’s largest logistics company, DHL, say they have been utilising mobile robots from Fetch Robotics to streamline warehouse operations.
The companies say they have completed a “successful pilot”, where they tested autonomous vehicles from Fetch Robotics.
The pilot was carried out in Wärtsilä’s central distribution centre in Kampen, the Netherlands, where the entire logistics chain of Wärtsilä’s spare parts, from order intake to customer delivery, is managed.
Denso Robotics has opened its latest and “most modern” sales, application and training center, located 40 minutes northeast of Cincinnati.
The Denso Robotics sales, application and training Center in West Chester, Ohio provides production operators, programmers and maintenance personnel training on the finer points of today’s cutting edge robotic arms, controllers and applications.