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Manufacturing

MusashiAI rolls out autonomous forklift and quality control robot

by Louis Stone
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Honda partnership keeps costs low by moving sensors out of the machine

MusashiAI has released a family of AI-powered industrial products that includes an autonomous visual quality control inspector, an autonomous forklift driver, and a robotic fleet management system.

The joint venture between Israel’s SixAI and Honda Motor’s Musashi Seimitsu has secured several proof-of-concept sales with manufacturers.

It was guaranteed an advance payment of $10 million to deploy in Musashi factories.

Billing itself as the 'world's first robot employment agency,’ MusashiAI’s robots are primarily available for hire – but can be bought outright.

The eyes above

The company’s forklift driver system combines ‘birds’ eye view’ cameras above the factory floor with a central processing hub that controls the swarm of small robots. The forklifts themselves are not equipped with vision sensors, nor LiDAR.

“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,” Ran Poliakine, co-founder of MusashiAI, said.

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

MusashiAI's autonomous forklift drivers

The company began live trials of its autonomous visual inspector back in December 2019, with the system capable of detecting manufacturing inaccuracies to a 50μm resolution.

The inspector will be trialed by one of the world's largest bearing manufacturers; another three PoCs were signed with Israeli retail and FMCG groups for the forklift drivers and central management system, to be delivered later this year.

The company said that the current COVID-19 pandemic was likely to increase demand for the robots, as well as equipment for socially distanced industrial settings.

“The interest from Musashi Seimitsu coupled with our latest finalized PoC trials with a world-leading manufacturer and three leading Israeli logistics companies is a great sign of confidence in our technology and the gifts it brings to the future of humanity,” Poliakine said. “I am excited about the company’s next steps.”

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