A challenge everyone sees across all businesses in various industries is workforce shortages. Fast food orders aren’t completed “fast” due to staffing issues. Only one of five checkout lanes is open due to the grocery store or department store not having proper staffing in place. Sure, it might be frustrating for consumers, but not nearly as much as the ones working in those fields.
This is no different in the manufacturing industry. In the U.S. alone, manufacturing employment dropped by nearly 400,000 from pre-pandemic levels to late 2021, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Whether one blames the pandemic or blames the so-called “Great Resignation,” the manufacturing industry needs help, and knowing this, SIXAI, the parent company of MAESTRO developer 634AI, released plans for worldwide deployment of the AI-powered mobile robot system within the next few years. The goal is to realize the vision of Industry 4.0, where robots and humans complement one another.
The worldwide deployment is part of an initial plan to place 200 autonomous mobile robots, or AMRs, across 35 global manufacturing facilities owned and operated by auto parts manufacturer Musashi Seimitsu. North America is among the regions under consideration for early distribution of the AMRs.
“We have been heavily investing in automation and AI capabilities over the past few years with a vision to create a more humane workplace where people no longer carry out tedious, repetitive, unrewarding tasks,” said Isaku Takeshi, CIO of Musashi Seimitsu.
MAESTRO features a control tower that provides a bird’s eye view of the manufacturing floor and a central AI-powered processing unit that enables a fully coordinated operation – from tracking and tracing the movement of goods and equipment to identifying hazards and obstacles. This new technology creates a safer workforce, where AMRs carry out rigorous and repetitive tasks while humans handle specialized jobs.
MAESTRO uses machine vision technology and AI to transform indoor operations. Simply introduce a mobile robotic platform to the floor and let MAESTRO see it, track it and direct its movement autonomously and in sync until the task is fulfilled.
The robots will be deployed in phases, first as a pilot, followed by ramped-up integration over the course of the next several years. The AMRs require low maintenance and cost less than competing models, making them an optimal choice for companies facing labor shortages and looking for cost-effective solutions.
“The future is a hybrid job market with robots and AI working in harmony with humans,” said SIXAI Founder and CEO Ran Poliakine. “What SIXAI and Musashi are doing today will increase productivity and safety in industries worldwide.”
Edited by Erik Linask