An agreement between Agility Robotics and Ford could lead to the first fully robotic delivery system
More and more companies are developing automated delivery systems, including drones, self-driving cars or small automatic trolleys. One of the fundamental problems of these approaches is “the last 15 meters,” as Ken Washington, CTO of Ford Motor, calls them. A self-driving car would have no way of bringing the package to the door of the house. Here comes the Agility Robotics, a New York State robotics company, which develops bipedal robots similar to ostriches called Cassie. Capable of orienting and navigate using cameras and sensors, this robot can be just what you need to deliver a package.
The self-driving car and the robot, however, will not be two separate systems, innovation lies in the relationship between the two, in fact the sensors of the robot will be integrated by those of the vehicle able to provide not only an overview of its own position and environment around and the ability to react quickly to unforeseen events, but that will allow the robot messenger to understand where he is exactly when he is released: a moment that usually leads to a few minutes of confusion for these machines, which need to map what surrounds them.
Moving on two legs instead of wheels, the robot is able to avoid most obstacles, climb stairs and avoid holes in the ground without problems.
Watch the video. Credits: Ford Motor/Agility Robotics