OMRON Mobile Robots Win Japan METI Minister's Award

OMRON Corporation’s LD Series and HD Series mobile robots won the prominent Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) Minister’s Award at the 10th Robot Awards program. The Robot Awards is chiefly co-organized by METI and the Japan Machinery Federation.

The Robot Awards program is an initiative that commends outstanding robots, components and software, their advanced use and R&D. It also recognizes efforts to develop human resources in the field of robotics, with the aim of facilitating development of robot technologies and expansion of robot utilization in Japan. Respective ministers honor applicant companies and other organizations that have developed robots deemed most outstanding in each ministerial policy. The METI Minister’s Award presented to OMRON this year is the top award given to the winner selected from all the applicants from different fields and categories.

OMRON’s mobile robots

Highly Productive Transport Platform

The OMRON LD/HD Series Mobile Robots automate material transport tasks in factories and facilities. This frees up human workers from strenuous work, allowing them to focus on more creative tasks. These autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) have won the prestigious accolade in recognition of a highly productive transport platform with advanced safety and usability, which contributes to the advancement of manufacturing industries worldwide, as well as its potential for future deployment. Below sites the reasons for the selection.

OMRON’s Mobile Robots are a high-quality platform that enable a fleet of multiple AMRs. A practical system is created by combining individual technologies, such as simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) technology and obstacle avoidance. Specifically, SLAM constructs a map of an unknown environment while simultaneously keeping track of an agent’s location within it. They are making major contributions to the enhancement of productivity on manufacturing floors having sold over 3,000 units in 40 countries. Through alliance with system integrators, these transport platforms are expected to automate more applications in a wider variety of fields.

OMRON aims to create a better society by solving social issues through business. Thus, it contributes to the advancement of manufacturing that underpins a sustainable society with its unique value creation concept, “innovative-Automation.” Going forward, OMRON will create a prosperous future for people, industries, and Planet Earth through automation as it seeks to solve labor shortages and other social issues by further spreading the use of mobile robots.

LD/HD Series Mobile Robots

There is a growing need for the automation of material transport tasks as companies face rapid changes in society. These changes include transition to high-mix, low-volume production, social distancing of people due to the COVID-19 pandemic, combined with the intensifying challenge of labor shortages on manufacturing floors. Previous generations of transport robots, however, had some challenges that needed to be solved before they could be applied to broader deployment. These problems include design and verification of applications as well as low-efficiency due to robots interfering with obstacles and people that work in the same environment.

The LD/HD Series were designed so that they can be deployed flexibly into a production line without factory layout change. Multiple OMRON’s mobile robots can work together in a fleet to increase productivity. They can also work safely among people. With their payload capacity ranging from 60  to 1,500kg, OMRON’s mobile robots cover a variety of applications.