On July 13, ZMP announced that development of a prototype for a delivery robot CarriRo Delivery, which travels pedestrian walkways autonomously, has been completed.
In 2014, ZMP began to undertake the challenge of developing a logistical support robot, known as CarriRo, that would help to alleviate issues stemming from a lack of staff for logistics companies and began shipping the CarriRo last year. The CarriRo Delivery, however, in addition to helping package and food delivery companies with staff shortages, was also developed to help those who find it difficult to get out of the house for shopping.
The CarriRo Delivery has boxes to be delivered mounted onto it, and using laser sensors and camera, detects 360 degrees around itself, and can travel autonomously at a maximum speed of 6 km/h. Information on the unit can be monitored remotely, and the unit can even be remotely controlled if needed. The CarriRo Delivery comes in at 1330 mm in length, 750 mm wide, 1090 mm tall and weighs 90 kg. It can run for 8 hours and carry a maximum load of 100 kg.
In anticipation of commercializing delivery robots and beginning delivery services, ZMP will begin to look into partnerships starting this August for the technological and service hurdles that these new robots will need to overcome. They have already decided that they will start test runs with the Japanese sushi delivery company Gin No Sara and their Ride On Express program.
At the present juncture, there are no laws in Japan that could be thought to affect robots travelling on pedestrian roads. ZMP will continue to perform testing on their delivery robots on their own private property, but are also looking to start testing in public in the future.
Written by Toshiya Kouketsu @ DAYS
(Translated by Bryce Clarke)