By Akhil Nair
An autonomous mobile robot (AMR) is a robot type that can perceive its environment and move independently. AMRs use machine learning, artificial intelligence, and sophisticated sensors to navigate and interpret their environment. Also, they use navigation techniques like collision avoidance to reroute, stop, or slow their path around the object before continuing with their task. Warehouses, healthcare institutions, agriculture businesses, and logistical companies are looking for innovative ways to increase safety, ensure precision, improve speed, and enhance operational efficiency. As a result, there is a growing demand for autonomous mobile robots (AMRs).
Emergence of Industry 4.0 steers AMR Demands
Flexibility has been evaluated as a deciding attribute in production system design over the last two decades. Particularly, Industry 4.0, for improving production flexibility. Industry 4.0 encompasses network building, decentralization, and virtualization for transitioning the conventional traditional production environment. Additionally, manufacturing flexibility enhances an enterprise’s ability to respond promptly to consumer demands, raise systems’ productivity cost-effectively, and use resources efficiently.
The emerging technologies like artificial intelligence or cloud operations in the Industry 4.0 era facilitate new flexible production systems. Accordingly, fast information exchange & analytics and automation can be reached through Industry 4.0 connectivity. As a result, AMRs in production systems can improve manufacturing performance with regard to costs, flexibility, and productivity. Hence as per our analysis, the emergence of Industry 4.0 is a key growth driver of the global autonomous mobile robots (AMR) market, set to record a CAGR of 21.31% by 2030.
Here’s our take on the major robot types that bring about new automation and efficiency levels in warehouses:
A self-driving forklift is assessed to be the next wave of warehouse innovations, help companies save on labor and provide safe industrial settings. Additionally, there is a surging demand for logistics help, but the skilled workforce and forklift operators are in short supply. For instance, as per a recent Logistics UK survey, 13% of respondents reported severe staff shortages in warehouses and a considerable decline in the availability of forklift drivers.
Accordingly, in Europe, an increasing number of distribution centers and warehouse operators are considering driverless forklift truck technology as the optimal solution to the employment and recruitment cost hindrances. Moreover, as per Inkwood Research, Europe is expected to be the largest revenue-generating region in the global AMR market, with robotics increasingly becoming relevant for small manufacturing industries in the region. Also, according to our estimates, self-driving forklifts are the fastest-growing robot type in the market, set to project a CAGR of 22.50% by 2030.
Besides, smart, self-driving forklifts are programmed to work safely alongside people as ‘assistants.’ Moreover, self-driving forklifts use intelligent software and sophisticated sensors to be aware of their surroundings at all times. As a result, robotic vehicles are projected to address labor shortages for logistics companies and manufacturers and make their operations more efficient and safe.
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), also known as warehouse drones, are aerial robotics platforms utilized for inventory management in smart warehouses. These undertake tasks like stock finding, cycle counting, inventory audit, etc. They fly uncontrolled and can count and identify the materials stocked in warehouses, comparing it with the data stored virtually, thereby enabling cost-effective and safe inventory operations.
With regard to the annual inventory, UAVs are a revolutionary step. Manually counting stock on hand is a tedious, weeks-long process, needing lots of manpower and time. Also, this has to be done outside regular business hours, leading to overtired & timed staff, further increasing the risk of errors. In the case of warehouse drones, the work can be done during weekends and business hours.
Additionally, drones reduce the time taken and are equipped with scan technologies and high-resolution cameras that allow in-flight stocktaking. Besides, a drone can take 30 pictures/second, cataloging all articles on shelves. In this regard, one of the early pioneers is the US-American supermarket chain, Walmart. As a result, drone usage promises cost-effectiveness and simplifications in operative processes.
As per our findings, logistics & e-commerce are the fastest-growing end-user, estimated to record a CAGR of 22.48% by 2030.
Goods-To-Person Picking Robots (GTP)
Goods-to-person autonomous mobile robots move shelves to a pick & pack station. Therefore, they significantly reduce walking and foot traffic while considerably increasing productivity. Additionally, the advancements in mobility, sensors, and artificial intelligence enable their easy deployment virtually anywhere.
Bleum, GreyOrange, and IAM Robotics are among the market players offering mobile robotic picking solutions, thereby adding new efficiency levels to the process. Besides, Fetch’s line of AMRs has zero infrastructure requirements and can be deployed in facilities in as little as eight hours.
As per our evaluations, goods-to-person picking robots are the largest revenue-generating robot type in the global AMR market, with a 44.81% share in 2021.
Major Robot Types: Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGVs) are the Latest Trend
Over fifty years ago, law-enforcement and military authorities used UGVs for tasks dangerous or physically impractical for humans, like bomb detection and offering remote situational awareness. Now, UGVs have moved to private industry applications like the physical security sector. They provide an integrated approach to security, blending the attributes of a mobile security guard with video surveillance technologies and access control.
Furthermore, autonomous systems can effectively detect break-ins, vandals, and trespassers, neutralize real threats in real time, and capture forensic investigation data. With several private & public entities looking for cost-effective ways to protect people & property and detect crime, the UGVs usage is among the few leading trends set to direct the global autonomous robots (AMR) market growth.
Which is the lucrative country in the global autonomous robots (AMR) market?
India is the lucrative country in the global autonomous robots (AMR) market.
Which is the leading region in the global autonomous robots (AMR) market?
Asia-Pacific is the leading region in the global autonomous robots (AMR) market.