Siemens Logistics launches scalable parcel picking robot
Siemens Logistics has launched a new standalone and scalable automated parcel handling robot, which has been designed specifically for dynamic picking in parcel sorting centres.
According to the company, the VarioPick robotic solution offers top picking rates, comes at an affordable cost, and can be integrated in less than 24 hours. It has been developed to help carriers easily expand sorting systems and reduce manual processes.
Using an AI-based recognition system, VarioPick identifies pre-defined consignments and picks them automatically from a moving 2D or 3D parcel stream. Deep learning is used to precisely identify an object’s shape and position to determine the optimal gripping point. The solution also features an advanced control system and new suction gripper technology, both of which have been developed in-house at Siemens Logistics.
“The future of logistics lies in automation – and robotics solutions are a valuable addition,” said Michael Reichle, CEO of Siemens Logistics. “We are proud to contribute our decade-long R&D experience in pattern recognition software and special devices. With VarioPick, we present a sophisticated robotics system that will take automation in parcel sorting centres to a new, unprecedented performance level.”
Prior to launch, VarioPick was tested as part of an extensive pilot project. Siemens Logistics worked with a large European letter sorting centre to expand capacity so it could handle mixed-mail items. VarioPick successfully detected items that were difficult for machines to process and automatically removed them from the main parcel stream. This prevented the disruption of the automated process and avoided the need for manual handling.
According to Siemens Logistics, VarioPick offers picking rates that are “up to four times the throughput of manual processes”. Furthermore, the solution’s small footprint and fast deployment time means that it is highly scalable, with users able to add more VarioPick units to suit demand. The VarioPick also features a user-friendly interface which displays all visualization systems on one dashboard.