How can robots help in a warehouse?

Today's consumer demands ever faster production and delivery times. This means that manufacturers must necessarily speed up their production and logistics processes to remain competitive.

Mobile robotic solutions are already established in transport and logistics with more than 49,500 units (+45%) sold in 2021, according to World Robotics 2022. In addition, it shows a record high of robots installed in factories worldwide, reaching a 31% year-on-year growth rate.

Find out in this article about the different types of warehouse robots, the advantages of a mobile robot in a factory, what aspects to take into account, lists of manufacturers, etc.

Are you considering automating some tasks in your workplace? You have heard about automation by robotics but have doubts about it? Do you already have good experience with a warehouse robot and are you considering expanding your AMR fleet? This reading clarifies many of the most frequently asked questions, but if you still have doubts, our team is ready for any specifics.

TYPES OF ROBOTS FOR A WAREHOUSE

Static, guided, mobile... Automation and robotics in warehouses differ depending on the specific manufacturing needs. In some cases, bulky, static robots are needed to perform tasks automatically and always in the same place.
In other cases, a mobile robot that performs tasks in different locations within the same warehouse is more useful. It is also common to combine static and mobile robotics for workplaces where different tasks are performed at the same time.

These are the 3 main types of warehouse robots:

  • Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs). These are the ones that require the installation of guides, magnets or some kind of markers to move in a predictable way. AGVs are usually in demand for tasks that require little complexity.
  • Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR). They move autonomously and in an unlimited space by means of sensor elements. They are able to avoid obstacles and re-route if necessary.
  • Mobile Manipulators. These are autonomous mobile robots, AMR, which integrate a robotic arm into the platform. So they have the capacity to perform the same tasks as a robotic arm, but in different locations.

WHAT IS A WAREHOUSE ROBOT?

They are robots developed with the necessary software and hardware to automate tasks within a warehouse, support the human team, replace them in cases of repetitive or dangerous tasks, and ultimately, streamline and improve all manufacturing processes.
The vast majority of Robotnik products are robots capable of working in warehouses and factories as they have different sizes, load capacities and technical specifications. Here you can see the warehouse robots and here the mobile warehouse manipulators.

3 TIPS FOR AUTOMATE YOUR WAREHOUSE ON AN INTELLIGENT WAY

  1. Consider multi-purpose robots. One of the main trends in warehouse robotics is to acquire a robot capable of performing multiple tasks, i.e. a multi-purpose robot.
  2. Mobile Manipulation. Robotnik has recently experienced an increase in demand for mobile manipulators in warehouses. One of the most automated tasks in this environment is the transport of goods, but what if you have the option of a single robot to perform both transport and pick and place? Mobile handling is a clear trend for 2022 that will continue to consolidate.
  3. Let yourself be advised by experts. It is usual for an end user to be clear about what the improvement he wants or his goal, but he doesn’t necessarily know what specific robotic solution he needs to achieve that goal. In this sense, Robotnik has 20 years of experience in service robotics.

Amazon's intelligent warehouse automation strategy is definitely working, let's start yours?


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What are the Benefits & Advantages of Robots in the workplace?

The service robot sector has been developing especially fast in recent years.

The benefits of robots in workplace can already be seen in various reports such as the International Federation of Robotics ones.
What is a robot in workplace? Work robot’ is a colloquial term that is popularly used and usually refers to an industrial robot or a service robot.

robot móvil RB-VOGUI

The robotisation process is advancing and establishing itself in more and more industrial sectors, although the automotive industry is still at the head, accounting for around 30% of the total demand each year.

At every point in history, humans have developed the necessary tools to carry out their work. Now, mobile robotics is the key to Industry 4.0. It is no longer just about automating industrial processes, but about intelligent automation in which mobile robotics optimises production and profitability, and makes tasks easier for employees.

Robots in the workplace are not here to replace humans at all, but to provide better working conditions.

6 benefits and advantages of working robots

  1. Increased productivity: An Autonomous Mobile Robot, AMR, canperform full shifts so that production runs 24 hours a day without interruption.
  2. Reduced accidents at work: there are tasks that pose a risk to workers. For example, tasks in deteriorated environments with the possibility of collapse, work with toxic substances or handling very heavy loads. Robots can perform these tasks, increasing occupational safety for operators.
  3. Error reduction: it is assumed that in every production line there is a percentage of errors. However, a robotic system has the precision to significantly reduce that percentage. This is one of the main benefits of robots in the workplace: the precision of a robot or mobile manipulator reduces the possibility of production errors and increases the quality of certain processes.
  4. Increased flexibility: there are many types of robots in the workplace, therefore the number of tasks that a robot can do has also increased considerably. Within a single industry, robots can be adapted to various applications, thus increasing flexibility and cost-effectiveness.
  5. New job opportunities: more and more people are required for designing, programming and manufacturing robots, as well as for different areas of research and technological development. Furthermore, as productivity increases, it is logical that the company will grow and require more staff.
  6. Betting on the future: in today’s highly competitive, demanding and globalised industrial landscape. Being at the forefront of technology is a matter of business development. Betting on intelligent automation through robotic systems is equivalent to building a solid foundation for a business to remain profitable, competent and sustainable.

RB-KAIROS+

Many of Robotnik’s customers are opting for more intelligent robots, with more safety guarantees and more intuitive for end users.
It is all about using the possibilities offered by technology to become more competitive.

Examples of robots at work

However, some companies believe that there are obstacles. For example, bringing robots into the workplace requires a large infrastructure as well as a large investment.

On the one hand, collaborative robots such as those manufactured by Robotnik are designed to operate with humans in the same workspace without the need for a safety perimeter, making them easy to deploy in any factory. Moreover, these systems are scalable: they can be tested in a given area and then expand their operating zone thanks to their capacity for mobility. The same goes for the number of units: it can be progressively expanded depending on the results.

RB-KAIROS+

On the other hand, it is common to find new customers who think that if their company is an SME, they cannot afford to incorporate robots into the workplace, but this approach is wrong.
There are currently more than 5 000 Robotnik mobile robots in the market, working in various industries and companies, which have seen how the investment in mobile robotics has had a return in the short-medium term.

Want to see some videos of robots at work?:

  • RB-ROBOUT in an industrial production system.
  • RB-KAIROS+, the Mobile Manipulator for industry.
  • RB-VOGUI for indoor and outdoor logistics.