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evoBOT: High-speed robot rolls out at Munich Airport

The evoBOT robot at Munich Airport
The evoBOT robot at Munich Airport

evoBOT, a mobile robot created by the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics IML, is going on its maiden voyage at the Munich Airport. The institute showcased evoBOT’s remarkable capabilities during a test run at the airport. 

The cutting-edge autonomous robot sports a unique two-wheeled design and is fitted with gripper arms. With this design, evoBOT seamlessly balances while executing tasks. The nifty little robot also goes beyond just mere transportation. 

evoBOT: The perfect cargo robot

The evoBOT is proficient in handling hazardous materials and plays a crucial role in loading and unloading an aircraft. It lightens the load for airport employees by doing the heavy lifting since it can lug up to 100 kg (220 lbs). And with a potential top speed of 60 km/h (37 mph), the robot is no slouch.

It is built around the principle of an inverse compound pendulum. This boosts its stability by eliminating the use of an external counterweight. In essence, it means the evoBOT can tackle uneven terrains with ease, and without losing its balance. 

The ‘future of robotics’

Fraunhofer IML managing director Professor Michael ten Hompel describes evoBOT as a robotic marvel. Moreover, he says it heralds a new era of autonomous vehicles (AVs) and robots.

He explains: “With its articulated arms and unique two-wheeled design, it signifies a step towards the humanoid future of robotics. The successful test at Munich Airport convincingly demonstrates the immense potential of this development.”

Meanwhile, Munich International Airport CEO Jost Lammers welcomes the introduction of evoBOT at the airport, especially since it will streamline operations, digitalize cargo handling processes, and enhance the workplace experience for employees. 

“The development and expansion of the cargo and logistics sector are essential components of our corporate strategy. […] The evoBOT will facilitate the daily work of our colleagues in the cargo area and make the workplace more attractive,” says Lammers.

ALSO READ: Robots need better internet to keep moving

Beyond conventional boundaries

evoBOT takes logistics to a new level with its modular system. This means the robot is designed with interchangeable parts that can be easily reconfigured to adapt to different tasks.

It can therefore adapt to complex spaces and carry out intricate push-pull operations. In combining and enhancing these capabilities, it becomes the perfect human-centric assistant.

Its ability to balance itself sets it apart from traditional robots. The evoBOT can move over challenging surfaces, making it useful in a myriad of ways. Plus, the bot is also compact, lightweight, and easy to move around. 

The debut of the evoBOT at the Munich Airport is a glimpse into a future where humans and robots can collaborate seamlessly to boost operational efficiency and workplace ergonomics.

About the author

Cheryl has contributed to various international publications, with a fervor for data and technology. She explores the intersection of emerging tech trends with logistics, focusing on how digital innovations are reshaping industries on a global scale. When she's not dissecting the latest developments in AI-driven innovation and digital solutions, Cheryl can be found gaming, kickboxing, or navigating the novel niches of consumer gadgetry.

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