March 28, 2022
ePicker, which develops material handling equipment, has announced a partnership with robotics developer Anantak to power warehouse vehicles that include pallet movers, tuggers, stackers, and forklifts. The ePicker autonomous pallet mover, powered by Anantak, aims to make warehouse automation more attainable for companies.
The first vehicle from this partnership combines lasers, 3D cameras, vehicle telemetry and a proprietary self-driving software package to allow the unit to complement existing workflows instead of replacing them, ePicker said. The system sets itself apart from other mobile robots with on-board intelligence and how little effort is needed to deploy, maintain, and scale for any operation. ePicker said units will be available for delivery in August 2022, but was taking orders during this week’s MODEX 2022 event.
The company said significant changes are usually required to existing processes and infrastructure to make them run seamlessly. The autonomous pallet mover allows for more rapid adoption by intentionally keeping a human in the loop at the front end of the process, and then engaging onboard autonomy to allow for safe, reliable transport and dropoff to destinations within a facility.
“One of the biggest highlights of our technology is that it doesn’t need a lot of programming, it grows with you, becomes customized to your needs and learns as it operates,” said Manuj Naman, founder and CEO at Anantak. “Working with ePicker has been an incredible journey as their products complement to our technology perfectly. Its line of material handling equipment is meeting unique and valuable needs and our partnership is bringing solutions to the market that are unlike the other options available today.”
As workflows become more complex, or the number of robots increases, the fleet management capabilities expand, including a cloud-based platform that allows for remote support and over-the-air updates to keep operations running smoothly, ePicker said. The autonomous pallet mover also supports customers by ensuring extended costs are limited through simple repair and service solutions.
“ePicker has lithium and traditional powered vehicles that help fill a gap in the warehouse, and the addition of Anantak technology gives our customers another excellent option to meet the needs that require consistent and repetitive routes,” said Jason Bratton, president of ePicker. “At the end of the day, users don’t care how our solutions, they just want them to work and alleviate a pain point. The ePicker autonomous pallet mover adheres to all industry safety standards and we are really excited to continue building this line of vehicles with Anantak.”
Features of the autonomous pallet mover include manual pick, obstacle avoidance, autonomous dropoff, and inline or in-grid mapping that can be done by the user. The first autonomous pallet mover can automatically map any footprint changes and includes onboard diagnostics, showing users step-by-step how to solve serviceability issues onscreen. These components break the barrier between technology and accessibility, making it user friendly for customers and giving them more autonomy, the company said.