November 16, 2023
Amazon has launched a new fulfillment center robot, designed to take on heavy lifting and product-transportation tasks across the warehouse floor, in a move the retailer says supports “safety and efficiency” in operations.
The mobile robot, Titan, can lift up to 2,500 pounds and will be initially used to carry larger, heavier items at a warehouse such as household appliances, pet food and gardening equipment.
The robot’s design incorporates features from several of Amazon’s other warehouse robots, such as the battery and charging management solution from heavy-lifting robot Hercules and the computer vision, obstacle detection and user control systems from mobile robot Xanthus.
“Titan builds off over a decade of innovations in mobile robotics at Amazon,” wrote Cosette Jarrett in an Amazon blog post. “[It] can lift up to two times more weight than Hercules, the most broadly deployed robot within our operations,”
Titan also uses hardware components from Amazon’s autonomous mobile robot, Proteus, to manage its operating system as it communicates with other robots and smart technologies within the facility.
Titan will be rolled out initially at Amazon’s SAT1 fulfillment center in San Antonio, Texas, which houses a larger inventory than many of the retailer’s other sites.
The announcement is the latest in Amazon’s road map to ramping up automation at its facilities. The retailer’s robotics initiative began in 2012 when it acquired Kiva Robotics. Amazon’s first in-house robot, Atlas, deployed in 2014.
Now, Amazon says it has more than 750,000 robots across its sites working alongside human employees and taking on more repetitive and labor-intensive tasks.
“Mobile robots like Titan work collaboratively with other robotics systems to create a safer and more ergonomic workplace,” Amazon said. “[This] reduces repetitive motions, eliminates the need for employees to walk long distances or move heavy objects and allows employees to focus on new tasks that require new skills.”
According to the company, last year incident rates and lost-time incident rates were “15% and 18% lower, respectively, at Amazon Robotics sites than they were at its non-robotics sites.”
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