Boston Dynamics has revealed the first robot specifically developed for commercial applications. Named Stretch, the robot has been designed for warehouse work, built for mobile deployment in existing spaces.
Continuing the company’s iconic robotics transition to commercial operations, Stretch is the development of the earlier Handle prototype of Boston Dynamics. Handle’s early demonstrations of the ability to select and place boxes hint at the company’s ambitions to create a warehouse robot.
However, it is clear that a two-wheeled vehicle design cannot easily fit into many pre-existing commercial spaces. Its large pendulum swinging motion required a lot of space, the company quickly realized just how inefficient the Handles were in pre-existing commercial environments.
With Stretch, the company introduces its second commercial robot. Unlike the original Spot product, a robotic dog that was developed over the years with no apparent commercial application, Stretch is clearly designed to efficiently handle warehouse and manure center tasks. mix.
Most current warehouse automation technologies are fixed in a single position, and existing mobile robots are relatively slow compared to human workers. Stretch is intelligently designed to fill that void in the market, providing omnidirectional movement and computer vision technology that allows it to traverse complex and tight spaces.
Boston Dynamics CEO Robert Playter notes: “Warehouses are struggling to meet rapidly growing demand as the world relies more on on-time delivery. “Mobile robot allows for flexible movement of materials and improves working conditions for employees. Stretch combines Boston Dynamics’ advances in mobility, perception, and maneuverability to tackle the toughest, trauma-prone handling tasks, and we’re excited to see it work well . “
The dimensions of the Stretch sole have been designed to accurately reflect the size of a standard pallet, meaning the robot will be able to easily adapt to the size of most existing warehouse spaces. The company thinks robots at this stage can move around 800 boxes per hour.
An Early Adopter program has been announced for testing Stretch testing in a warehouse environment and refining prototypes for mass production.
There are no prices for Stretch yet and the company is expected to be on the market around 2022. For comparison, Boston Dynamics’ Spot robot is currently priced at around $ 75,000.
Check out Stretch in action in the video below.
Source: Boston Dynamics