Magazino Tests Mobile Robots
at Zalando for Intralogistics
August 29, 2019
The Munich-based robotics company Magazino has successfully completed
its test project with the mobile picking robot TORU at Zalando, the
online platform for fashion and lifestyle. Now the expansion of the
robot fleet and the move to a larger operational area are on the agenda.
At the test site in Erfurt, Magazino’s TORU robots were deployed
parallel to humans within the Zalando warehouse and responsible for the
autonomous storage and retrieval of shoe boxes in shelving racks.
The approval of the project consisted of a three-day performance and
availability test. The robots had to prove their speed and reliability.
Markus Ruder, project manager at Magazino and responsible for the
deployment at Zalando, says: “We were able to exceed the requirements in
all areas. What makes us particularly happy is that the hard work of the
past weeks has paid off so clearly”.
Carl-Friedrich zu Knyphausen, Head of Logistics Development at Zalando,
says: “After various assignments in Pick and Stow, the robots have
clearly proven themselves in our logistics test environment.”
The robot fleet will now have a significant increase in size and a new
location. The two robots from the Erfurt logistics center will now be
deployed at Zalando’s Lahr site in southern Germany and will be
reinforced by six more TORU robots in the course of this summer. The
robots will initially be put into operation in a separated part of the
shoe area within the warehouse where they will be trained. In a second
step, the robots will be connected to the warehouse management system.
scanners and 3D sensor technology at the front and rear enable the
autonomous robots to safely support the employees in their activities
while operating in parallel. If TORU registers an employee or an
obstacle on its route, it first slows down, stops in time and waits — or
searches for an alternative route if the route remains blocked.
In 2018 Zalando put the first TORU robots into operation in Erfurt: The
robots support “stow” (storage) and “pick” (picking) operations in the
areas of shoe boxes. Their special skill: In contrast to other
automation technologies, in which only entire load carriers such as
pallets or crates can be moved, the mobile TORU robots uses approaches
of artificial intelligence as well as 3D camera technology and can thus
recognize, grasp and transport individual objects. With these
capabilities, they are also able to support the chaotic storage system
used in Zalando’s logistics centers.