Seegrid Introduces New AMR Pallet Truck Series to Optimize Motion Planning on Facility FloorMarch 10, 2021 by Seth Price
Seegrid released a new line of autonomous pallet trucks to boost productivity in the warehousing and shipping environments.
The Palion Pallet Trucks (Series 8) can move pallets, charge themselves, and coordinate moving efforts with very little human input.
Seegrid has been developing autonomous industrial solutions since 2003. Their mission has been to create human-machine partnerships through smart robots and enterprise software solutions that improve efficiency and safety in the manufacturing environment.
Optimizing Pallet Placement
The Palion Pallet trucks can plan routes and storage locations. Rather than move a pallet from one place to another along a programmed path, they can optimize the placement of pallets themselves.
This is quite a challenge and a feat that humans can take for granted. For example, humans would intuitively not place pallets in the way of themselves or another forklift. However, a simpler automated vehicle may look for a space where a pallet would physically fit. This could lead to pallets blocking pathways, fire escape doors, or other forklifts.
The Palion Pallet trucks are integrated to have planned open spaces and routes to avoid these problems.
Palion Pallet Trucks Series 8 Payloads
The Series 8 Palion Pallet trucks consist of three autonomous mobile robots (AMRs): Palion Lift, Palion Pallet Truck, and Palion Tow Tractor. All three of these trucks have specific purposes in materials handling. For example, a Palion Tow Tractor may tow multiple pallets to a staging area for Palion Pallet Trucks to move to specific locations where Palion Lifts stack them onto shelves for organizational purposes.
Seegrid Palion AMRs. Image used courtesy of Seegrid
The Palion Lift is a straddle stacker capable of lifting 3,500 lbs (1,587 kg) up to 6 ft (1.8 m) off the ground. These are useful for stacking pallets in a warehouse or placing them on warehouse shelves.
The Palion Pallet Truck can pick up and set down 8,000 lbs (3,629 kg) pallets without any manual intervention. Automatically handling the pallets minimizes damage to merchandise—it prevents forks from poking the merchandise, lifting incorrectly, shifting the load, or catching the pallet and breaking it during movement. The Pallet Truck can move at 4 mph (6.4 km/h) through the site.
Seegrid Palion Pallet Truck. Image used courtesy of Seegrid
The Palion Tow Tractor can be trained to haul pallets through pre-planned routes. If multiple pallets must be moved, the Tow Tractor can haul 10,000 lbs (4,535 kg) at a speed of 4 mph (6.4 km/h).
Automated Routes and Auto-Charging
The Palion Pallet Truck Series can make detailed 3D maps of the environment. Users first train the trucks by walking them through the facility along routes that they will follow. The trucks build a 3D map of the environment, noting pathways and other features where pallets should not be placed.
This walk-through can be performed by virtually anyone, meaning a shift supervisor can alter the night shift route versus the day shift should they need more space to perform maintenance tasks or some other consideration.
Seegrid Palion Tow Tractor. Image used courtesy of Seegrid
Also, the walkthrough includes the charging station location. These trucks can detect when their batteries are getting low and drive themselves to the charging station. Auto-charging eliminates a dangerous touchpoint for operators, as they do not need to manually connect a high current supply to the batteries. The trucks are also less likely to have a dead battery at an inconvenient time or place.