Field visit to Amazon Logistics Center robot work site

Amazon built a large-scale logistics center with an area of ​​855,000 square feet (about 79,000 square meters) on Staten Island a few months before the establishment of the world’s second headquarters. Last fall, the $100 million JFK8 logistics center was officially put into operation, after Amazon conducted an on-site recruitment meeting to recruit 2,250 employees.

When the foreign media went to visit in February this year, the taste of the new venue was still in the air. The mechanical equipment is brand new and creaking. This 24-hour non-stop work program is designed to meet the company’s fast delivery standards for parcels for the entire e-commerce industry.

JFK8 is a church-like existence for capitalism in the early 21st century. Whenever it comes to Amazon’s strategy, it is impressive to see the large number of parcels that will be dispatched the next day on the complex conveyor system. Wonderful scenery.

The center also has the privilege of seeing the future mode of operation of the warehouse, and humans and robots work together to complete the task. The company currently has about 100,000 robotic systems in 25 logistics centers, and is said to help the company store 40% more inventories in its logistics centers.

The robots that were seen at the Staten Island Logistics Center were developed in collaboration with the Japanese automation giant Fanuc, which can perform a series of assembly lines, from sorters that can transport conveyor belts to suitable slides to large ones. Robotic code stacker.

Amazon’s indoor robots form the core of the system, all working toward the same terminal. The robot scales in a tightly controlled space, just like the large sweeping robot Roomba in a well-designed movement.

The mobile robot is the company’s $775 million acquisition of the core technology of the Massachusetts startup Kiva in 2012. In 2015, Kiva changed its name to Amazon Robotics. Kiva’s name still appears on some legacy signs, including the edge of the robot’s closed space, but Amazon’s rapid acquisition was the second largest acquisition in history.

Scott Dresser, head of software, systems and solutions at Amazon Logistics Robotics, told the media: “I think Amazon should be interested in the technology we developed to acquire us because they are interested in applying it to logistics centers. He also said: “That is the core storage system of the logistics center, placing all the inventory.”

The scene in which the robot works in the fence is reminiscent of the indoor batting scene. Employees pick up around and work with the robot to decide how best to store the goods on the hold and how the goods are transported together.

Dresser quickly refuted the hypothesis that robots will directly replace labor in the short term, pointing out that they each have independent and complementary work skills.

He said: “Manual is good at finding the place where the goods are placed on the shelves. The machine is not good at it. We can distinguish between the fields where labor and machines are good at each other. The mode of human-computer cooperation can be seen in a large number of different application scenarios. We see robots as a boost to human work, helping employees to do their jobs as efficiently as possible.”

Workshop safety is also a growing concern. A few months ago, a Robin Spears spill in the warehouse in Robbinsville, New Jersey, and 24 employees were sent to hospitals, which brought security issues back into view. Although the initial report showed that the incident was related to Amazon robots, the company denied it.

The perimeter of the robot is designed to protect employees from harm – this becomes a particularly important issue as large machines become a daily part of the shop floor. For the sake of safety and efficiency, human employees are usually not allowed to enter this confined space, but imperfect systems sometimes require this interaction. For example, things fall from the cargo hold, or the robot malfunctions.

So Amazon introduced robotic safety clothing, and the bright orange protective clothing consisted of a belt with a series of sensors, adding a few pounds to the staff. The protective clothing can be detected by the robot, and the robot has a system that knows which signal.

An employee showed off her protective clothing, clicked the button, opened the fence, walked inside, the robot with a certain distance slowed down, and the nearby robot stopped running immediately. This is an additional security feature. If the bear-spraying accident reveals something, it is that the news spread so quickly, whether it is related to robots.

As more and more consumers choose online shopping, robots are undoubtedly playing an increasingly important role in meeting this demand.

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