NFI automates truck unloading with Boston Dynamics Stretch robot in $10 million deal

NFI automates truck unloading with Boston Dynamics Stretch robotic in $10 million deal

Third social gathering logistics supplier (3PL) NFI Industries will deploy a truck-unloading robotic made by Boston Dynamics subsequent yr in a $10 million pilot program at its Savannah, Georgia, warehouse, the businesses stated at this time.

The transfer is step one in NFI’s plan to automate its operations by rolling out a fleet of the “Stretch” mannequin robots throughout North America over the following few years. Camden, New Jersey-based NFI stated the elevated automation is required to assist the circulate of products and improve operational capability as provide chain demand stays close to all-time highs. 

Extra particularly, NFI foresees Stretch turning into an “invaluable asset” in its community of import deconsolidation facilities, cross-dock, and transload services, as nicely as floor-loaded inbound and outbound distribution facilities.

Waltham, Massachusetts-based Boston Dynamics is finest identified for its two-legged “Atlas” and its four-legged “Spot” robots, however has lately developed the rolling Stretch mannequin to focus on the logistics sector.

With its robotic arm and vision-guided vacuum gripper mounted on a cellular platform, Stretch is an automatic case dealing with system that may transfer a wide range of package deal sorts as much as 50 kilos in weight. Every Stretch unit operates for greater than a full shift on a single cost or as much as 16 hours with a high-capacity battery possibility, and may autonomously get better any packages that shift or fall through the unloading course of, the agency says.

NFI’s deal marks the second massive logistics supplier to purchase a Stretch bot, after DHL made a $15 million buy in January.

“We designed Stretch to automate field transferring, an operationally and bodily difficult activity throughout warehouses,” Robert Playter, CEO of Boston Dynamics, stated in a launch. “Demand for items continues to rise, and robots like Stretch may help NFI alleviate a few of the challenges related to that surging demand. Stretch makes truck unloading a safer and extra environment friendly activity, and NFI can cross that effectivity alongside to its prospects.”


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