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ŠKODA AUTO uses Omron’s fully autonomous transport robot

04 February 2019

The autonomous robot contributes to the continuous improvement of work safety in Vrchlabí and helps to minimise work risks. It recognises people crossing its path as well as other vehicles and stationary obstacles.

As a key cornerstone of its 2025 Strategy, ŠKODA AUTO is rigorously advancing the digitalisation of its production process. As of now, the Czech car manufacturer is using a fully autonomous, self-learning transport robot from Omron at the Vrchlabí component plant. This robot is able to recognise obstacles along its journey through the plant and to incorporate other information from its surroundings when planning its route. If necessary, it changes its course to always get to its destination as quickly as possible. It thereby contributes to further improving safety at work and the efficiency of transport processes at the plant.

“It’s been a conscious decision to use ŠKODA AUTO’s first fully autonomous robot at the Vrchlabí plant. With it, we’re once again highlighting the plant’s key significance as an ultra-modern high-tech location,” said ŠKODA AUTO Board Member for Production and Logistics, Michael Oeljeklaus. “With the new transport system, we are consistently continuing to introduce technological innovations at our plants in keeping with Industry 4.0,” added Oeljeklaus.

On one trip, the transport robot can carry a load of up to 130kg and chooses the correct paths fully autonomously. Unlike traditional automated transport systems, it does not require lane guidance in the form of induction loops, magnetic strips or reflectors. To learn the route, the vehicle only needs to be guided between the stations once via a tablet or joystick. In doing so, it captures its environment as well as changes to its surroundings all by itself and adapts its route if necessary.

Read the full article in the February issue of DPA

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