Alibaba, a Chinese-based e-commerce online retailer has opened one of the largest smart and intelligent warehouses in China that includes 60 innovative robots.
These self-charging robots can carry up to 500 kilograms and move goods within the warehouse to human workers who then pack and dispatch the goods to customers around the world. This video posted by the World Economic Forum explains further.
The robots receive wif-fi enabled instructions and collect goods from over 32,300 shelves increasing the warehouse output by threefold. Occupying 3,000 square metres the Alibaba warehouse is situated in Huiyang, south China’s Guangdong Province.
An Assurance Made…
Robotics seems to be the future of high and heavy output-based warehouses and retailers such as Alibaba. Just two years ago Alibaba, SoftBank Corp and Foxconn announced an agreement under which Alibaba and Foxconn would each invest JPY 14.5 billion in SoftBank Robotics Holdings the SoftBank Group’s intermediate holding company responsible for its robotics business.
At the time, Jack Ma, Alibaba group founder and executive chairman said: “As we enter the data technology era, robotics will become a critical field that catalyzes technological breakthroughs in numerous sectors such as healthcare, public services, research and at home. Our partnership with SoftBank and Foxconn combines the best hardware and software talent in the industry to pave the way for robotics research and development. We are delighted to play an active role in the emerging field of robotics, that with cutting-edge technology and transformative products and services, can positively impact millions of lives.”
…A Promise Kept
Fast forward two years later and Alibaba has stayed this course, releasing the robotic machines named Zhu Que, or the Vermilion Bird, which is a spirit creature in Chinese mythology. Each of the machines is fitted with laser detection which prevents them from bumping into each other. Once fully charged, each robot can work eight hours non-stop saving human workers from running around the warehouse to find goods.