Surgere, an industry leader in providing visibility and control within a digitized supply chain (RFID, location and environment sensors, and advanced data analytics), has launched its Robotically Optimized and Balanced Inventory (ROBi) product to help automate cycle counts and improve overall accuracy of on-hand inventory within automotive manufacturing and warehouse environments.
Surgere's ROBi platform has successfully completed a full-scale pilot at a Dayton, Ohio, Tier-1 automotive supplier's distribution center and is ready for large-scale deployment.
ROBi integrates Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology with Fetch Robotic's award winning mobile robot platform to autonomously capture RFID label information from all angles and directions. Moving on programmable routes, the integrated platform transfers asset identification and location data to Surgere's cloud-based asset management system. Validating and providing further evidence of where tagged packaging, parts, tools and other assets are located within any given facility and to on-hand inventory. ROBi's data acquisition accounts for height of stacked or racked product above floor, depth within shelving, and the speed of robotic travel, thus completely removing the need for manual counting and searching. Secondarily, ROBi provides a 3D map of the facility and part location as part of the cycle count. Together, the richness of accurate inventory data along with inventory location greatly enhances inventory management and retrieval.
"Even with WMS systems in place, many of our clients find the fast-paced automotive part and container inventory storage, retrieval, and distribution process to often be ad hoc, time-intensive, error-prone, and costly. Without supporting technology, it can be a process in chaos" said William Wappler, president and CEO of Surgere. "After rigorous testing and evaluation, we've arrived at a place where our decision was solidly in favor of robotics over drones and other mobile and fixed devices. We found ROBi is a much more accurate and granular form of RFID data acquisition in automotive environments. Using ROBi technology; inventory tracking takes place constantly, consistently, quietly, safely and accurately. ROBi's real-time reporting capabilities, location mapping, and advanced sensor technology allows a company to confidently know their inventory is closely monitored 24 hours a day."
Wappler added that a number of other deployments are also underway. "Make no mistake, ROBi is a game-changer in inventory and cycle counting automation within automotive supply chain digitalization. We are thrilled at the prospects of making our clients more successful."
A new acquisition method in Surgere's growing arsenal of visibility and control technology, the data captured by ROBi feeds Surgere's overarching supply chain visibility and control solution; COS™. This cloud-based analytics engine provides Surgere clients with real-time information and data analytics for both upstream and downstream supply chain activity.
ROBi's mobility platform comes by way of Fetch Robotics, a San Jose–based technology firm providing robotics solu
tions for the warehousing and intra-logistics markets. Fetch robots are safe and come equipped with a dynamic obstacle avoidance feature that senses and avoids potential collisions with moving obstacles based on trajectory and speed. In addition, occlusion detection allows Fetch robots to slow when approaching blind corners.
"We are pleased to partner with Surgere and help to automate inventory with our autonomous robot platform," added Melonee Wise, CEO of Fetch Robotics. "Fetch's expertise in robotics and Surgere's leadership in supply chain combine for a formidable solution to bring more transparency and accuracy to inventory."
ROBi VIDEO: https://vimeo.com/230443241
Surgere's role in the evolving i4.0 supply chain reality is to provide their clients with advanced asset visibility, data analytics, and control through each segment of the Automotive Supply Chain — Packaging, Transportation, Yard, Finished Vehicles, Plant, and Cross-Global. Their clients include Adient, Cooper Standard, Electrolux, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Lear Corporation, MAHLE, Nissan North America, The Timken Company, Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, Whirlpool Corporation, Yanfeng Automotive Interiors, Yazaki, among many other well-known brands.
About Fetch Robotics:
Fetch Robotics develops and manufactures collaborative, autonomous mobile robot solutions for the warehousing and intralogistics markets. Headquartered in San Jose, California, Fetch Robotics takes advantage of its deep robotics expertise to provide reliable and safe collaborative AMR (Autonomous Mobile Robot) solutions for material handling and data collection.
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