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Need a helping hand? These robot employees are available now

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An Israeli-Japanese consortium has developed a fleet of robot “employees” ready to perform a range of tasks at factories and other industrial environments.

MusashiAI, which includes Israeli robotics company SixAI and Japan’s Musashi Seimitsu, an affiliate company of Honda Motor Corporation, has announced its autonomous visual quality control inspector, autonomous forklift driver, and disruptive mobile robot fleet management system is now ready for sale.

MusashiAI’s Central Fleet Management System is used to effectively manage swarms of SDV (self-driving vehicle) employees.

You may recall last December, MusashiAI launched the world’s first agency offering robots for hire in factories and other industrial environments to introduce more automation, digitalisation, and AI processes into advanced manufacturing or Industry 4.0.

The companies now report that the latest trials of its world-first technology have been successfully completed in Musashi Seimitsu’s factory.

The autonomous robotic visual inspector exceeded the speed, accuracy, and stamina of human workers in the tests, they say.

Unparalleled efficiency

And logistics tasks previously limited to human forklift drivers can now be autonomously performed by the robots.

The tests showed they "exceed modelled expectations with their unparalleled efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and safety standards."

The autonomous forklift driver uses MusashiAI’s fleet management system which employs perception and decision-making software which in combination with industry-standard HD cameras can predict incidents and prevent accidents on the factory floor. 

The autonomous forklift can navigate its way around human workers through a unique technology that combines cameras with a “birds-eye”, control tower view of the factory floor, and a central processing unit.

Proof of concept

Musashi Seimitsu is expected to expand the deployment of MusashiAI’s autonomous quality control inspectors and autonomous forklift drivers in its factories globally.

The company has also secured a proof of concept (POC) for the quality control inspector with one of the world’s largest bearing manufacturers.

Three POCs have also been finalised for the autonomous forklift drivers and central management system with leading Israeli retail and FMCG groups, scheduled to start later this year.

These agreements will be the first time the robots are being tested outside the Musashi Seimitsu group.

Socially-distanced industrial settings

The new technology represents a major breakthrough in training robots to prepare their tasks.

An advanced form of deep learning, which parallels the way the human brain absorbs and assimilates information was developed. This makes redeploying and switching robots between tasks much easier.

MusashiAI’s latest robotic models will be essential in the many socially-distanced industrial settings to come, the company’s predict.

“The goal of the joint venture with Musashi Seimitsu has always been to work towards our vision of Industry 4.0, where human workers do human jobs and are not trapped in manual industrial jobs,” explains Ran Poliakine, co-founder of MusashiAI.

Vision for robots to integrate onto production floors

SixAI – founded by a team of Israeli professionals led by entrepreneur Poliakine – and Musashi Seimitsu first announced the venture in 2019 at an event in Tokyo.

“Our vision is that the robots integrate easily onto production floors where there will still be some human workers, but others will be released from the drudgery of visual inspection and forklift driving,” Poliakine said.

“To our knowledge, no one else offers visual robots which surpass the skills of human workers as ours do.”

Poliakine says the interest from Musashi Seimitsu coupled with SixAI’s latest finalised POC trials with a world-leading manufacturer and three leading Israeli logistics companies is a great sign of confidence in its technology.

“I am excited about the company’s next steps.”

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