Human Operated Heavy Equipment Statistics
Some of the key players in the autonomous industrial vehicle market are Seegrid, Toyota Industries, AutoGuide, Autonomous Solutions, BALYO, and Dematic.
- Seegrid is described as a leader in self-driving industrial vehicles. It supplies autonomous material handling equipment and fleet management software.
- The company sells two Automated Guided Vehicles that are guided by Seegrid Vision. The Vision Guided Pallet Truck is capable of moving up to 8,000lbs, while the Vision Guided Tow Tractor can tow up to 10,000lbs.
- These vehicles boast superior productivity, increased safety, and a reduction in labor and operation costs.
- In 2016, Seegrid raised $25 million from investors to expand and focus on R&D for improving its existing technologies.
- Unlike other robotics companies that use a laser-based system for navigation, Seegrid uses cameras. This provides data that is 100 times greater than lasers, as instead of taking four beams, every pixel can be used. These stereo cameras are used to create a 3D point cloud to allow the vehicles to navigate the area.
Toyota Industries Corporation
- Toyota Industries is the world's largest manufacturer of forklifts and has created a number of autonomous industrial vehicles.
- It has created autonomous towing tractors in collaboration with All Nippon Airways. These were the first towing tractors to be used in Japan.
- These autonomous towing tractors boost efficiency while maintaining safety. This allows for more productivity without compromising on traveler satisfaction.
- The autonomous towing tractors use a combination of 2D/3D LiDAR sensors, a road pattern matching system, and a GPS for navigation.
- Toyota Industries also creates Raymond Automated Lift trucks. These provide the flexibility to operate the trucks both manually and allow them to work autonomously, do not require any installation of magnetic tape, wires, or other integration that traditional automated vehicles use, and allow for maximum productivity in warehouse, distribution, and manufacturing facilities.
- Toyota Forklifts, in collaboration with Bastian Solutions, provides two solutions. Robotic Batch Picking allows robots to pick batches for order placement. Robotic Truck Loading allows robots to load a box or unit of product onto trucks.
- Woven City is a future project of Toyota. Within it will be a network of autonomous vehicles, include material handling systems that cover the transportation and delivery of goods.
- AutoGuide is a leader in high-payload autonomous robotic solutions.
- The Max N10 platform features two autonomous vehicles, the Max N10 Automated Tugger and the Max N10 Pallet Stacker.
- These use an infrastructure-free SurePath guidance system that uses LiDAR instead of magnetic tape or RFID tags. This allows the vehicle to map the environment, with stations and paths defined in the SurePath system.
- In 2019, Teredyne acquired AutoGuide. This allowed it to start offering its heavy-payload and large material handling and logistic vehicles.
- According to Teredyne, AutoGuide “offers a unique, modular architecture on a purpose-built platform and is not a retrofitted manual product.”
- Because of their modular design, AutoGuide's platforms can easily be changed by swapping one tool with another quickly. By making its own platforms, the company also gained vertical control and no longer has to rely on third-party suppliers.
Autonomous Solutions Inc
- Autonomous Solutions develops OEM independent driverless vehicle solutions for a range of applications. These include mining, farming, industrial, and military applications.
- The company offers a NavOur vehicle automation kit. This allows any vehicle to be retrofitted with autonomous technology to be driven through remote control, teleop, or full automation.
- Within the mining vehicles, Autonomous Solutions offers haulage trucks, excavators, blast trucks, dozer vehicles, loaders, and autonomous drills. These come in semi- and fully-autonomous options.
- Within the farming equipment, Autonomous Solutions offers a number of autonomous tractors. The company works with CNH Industrial, which is the leader in innovative farming equipment.
- The company claims its differentiator is that it keeps its systems simple, unlike typical robotic systems that are very complex with multiple computers, radios, and sensors.
- Autonomous Solutions has developed a new GPS-denied navigation solution. This allows vehicles to operate near buildings, under trees, indoors, or near radio interference without having to rely on GPS.
- BALYO creates autonomous lift trucks and robots, offering the widest range of autonomous lift trucks.
- Its products include autonomous stackers, counterbalanced stackers, pallet trucks, tuggers, reach trucks, and autonomous mobile robots.
- The trucks and robots combine LiDAR with BALYO's proprietary algorithm that allows the technology to create a reference map of the environment. The robots also use safety lasers and sensors in order to detect dynamic obstacles to ensure a high level of safety.
- BALYO has entered into a seven-year agreement with Amazon on robotic solutions. It is described as a technological leader for its development of robotic solutions for material handling trucks and offers innovative design.
- The company places its success in that its products are not only affordable, but they are simple, scalable, and are aligned with users' expectations as well.
- Dematic is the world's third-largest materials handling systems supplier and provides intelligent automation hardware and software that can be used in warehouse, manufacturing, and distribution environments.
- Its products include counterbalance, tugger, unit load deck, compact, hybrid, and custom AGVs. These follow configurable paths to optimize storage, picking, and transport.
- These AGVs allow for reduced labor costs, boosted productivity, reduced product damage, and an increase in workplace safety. With a variety of automation and manufacturing options, Dematic also boasts flexibility.
- The Dematic AutoStore system is described as the most flexible, with high efficiency that allows for the fastest and densest order-fulfillment solution.
- In Australia, Dematic assembles its AGVs locally, which means that as well as strong support for commissioning, the company is able to provide ongoing maintenance from its local technicians.
- According to Dematic, the software has become one of the most important differentiators in the industry, meaning the company is taking advantage of the software talent available.