Non-profit education centre MassRobotics has published its first open-source autonomous mobile robot (AMR) interoperability standards.
The new initiative enables AMRs from multiple vendors to integrate and work together to support safe and efficient operations in global factories, warehouses, distribution and fulfilment centres.
Until now, fleets of robots from multiple vendors have had no standard way to coordinate activities or share information. The MassRobotics AMR interoperability working group was formed in 2020 to address these challenges and simplify the adoption of AMRs into the market.
The group’s newly issued standard is designed to allow robots of different types to share status information and operational conventions, or “rules of the road,” so they can work together more cohesively on a warehouse or factory floor.
The standard also enables the creation of operational dashboards so managers can gain insights into fleet productivity and resource utilisation.
“Functional and practical standards are a critical next step for robotic automation,” said Tom Ryden, executive director, MassRobotics.
“Our AMR interoperability working group has diligently focused on development and testing of these standards, which are needed now, and we fully expect will evolve as the robotics industry and end-user companies implement them.
“We encourage buyers to begin looking for the MassRobotics interoperability standard compliance badge when making purchasing decisions.”
Members of the working group and contributors to the newly introduced standards include Vecna Robotics, 6 River Systems, Waypoint Robotics, Locus Robotics, Seegrid, MiR, Autoguide Mobile Robots, Third Wave Automation and Open Robotics Foundation.
“The release of version 1.0 of the MassRobotics Interoperability Standard is a crucial milestone for the industry,” said Daniel Theobald, CEO of Vecna Robotics and co-founder of MassRobotics.
“It’s this pre-competitive collaboration and combined thinking from the greatest minds in the field that drive the sector forward exponentially faster than any one vendor could otherwise.”