The rise of consumer expectations for curbside pickup, buy-online-pickup-in-store, and same or next day delivery has forced fulfillment centers to transform their operations. Berkshire Grey’s next generation mobile robotic platform is the comprehensive solution that fulfillment leaders need to deliver higher throughput and lower costs.
Berkshire Grey’s mobile robotic platform is transforming distribution operations. The platform consists of dynamically controlled fleets of mobile robots, automated induction and discharge stations, flexible high-density buffer, and AI-enabled orchestration software with simulation. Multiple solution configurations scale from moderate to very large throughput operations for micro-fulfillment centers, dark stores, distribution centers, cross-dock operations, and back-of-store operations.
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Berkshire Grey purpose-built mobile robotic systems handle greater SKU coverage than traditional conveyor and other types of unit sorters. Because the mobile robots include gentle vertical pickup and placement at induct and discharge stations, the system is well-suited for products and packages that other systems struggle with such as:
Berkshire Grey’s orchestration software is capable of real-time coordination of thousands of mobile robots simultaneously in a single facility. This coordination enables the robots to operate as an intelligent synchronized fleet that performs the millions of dynamic travel pathways required to sequence hundreds of thousands of outbound items and orders — ensuring shipments match the detailed shelf planograms of each store in a retail chain and that customer orders are fulfilled efficiently. A robust set of APIs integrate the Berkshire Grey mobile robotic platform with enterprise software and hardware from other suppliers.
Berkshire Grey’s FlexBot® mobile robots are purpose built to operate in dynamically controlled fleets that are synchronized for robust sorting, picking, fulfilling, and sequencing. FlexBots are outfitted with innovative payload carrying decks to accommodate handling products as small as one pound and as large as 60 pounds. FlexBots are not generic AMRs that only provide point-to-point transport. They are intended to move dynamically in ever-changing pathways as part of a flexible system capable of the granular sortation necessary to enable aisle ready shipments and complex delivery sequencing of items, packages, and orders. BG FlexBots are fast, rugged, and reliable.
The BG FLEXTM mobile robotic platform includes critical infrastructure components, including automatic induct and discharge stations storage. Induct and discharge stations called FlexFeeds are controlled by the software to ‘feed’ items, cases, and containers into and out of configured processing floors where the mobile robots carry products and containers to perform sortation and order fulfillment to prescribed strategies. FlexFeeds are engineered for fast and reliable movements of items and automatically interact with the FlexBots to ensure safe and effective movement of goods into and out of the mobile robotic solution areas.
High density buffer is an integrated component of the platform that provides temporary holding for items, packages, and cases when necessary to accommodate sophisticated fulfillment processing and dynamic sort and sequence runs in an optimal footprint. FlexBots interact with the high density buffer system via standard FlexFeeds that can induct and discharge both totes and cases. The modularity of the system allows for integrating with other systems such as AS/RS and palletizers from other suppliers.
Inventory and order containers are automatically served from buffer areas to Goods-to-Person pick stations to fulfill orders. Order containers can be totes, reusable containers, or shipping boxes. Products can range from food items to apparel, electronics, pet items, toys, and general merchandise. The stations are designed to support fast picking in an ergonomically sound and safe manner for operators and the user interface is intuitive. Operators are typically working at production levels within a few hours of initial training.
Robotic item and each picking can be integrated with mobile robots to enable world-class fulfillment operations that overcome labor availability challenges and handle some of the most common tasks including: