Ford presents home-delivery robot
Published Thursday, May 23, 2019 5:31PM EDT
The American automaker Ford has unveiled "Digit," a two-legged, almost human-like robot capable of making home deliveries.
Designed in collaboration with Agility Robotics, Digit can walk, go up and down stairs, and carry packages of up to 40 pounds (just over 18kg), like a human. The robot can, for example, collect parcels from a driverless autonomous vehicle and deliver them to the homes of end clients. The robot is also designed to fold up tightly for easy storage and transportation onboard a self-driving vehicle, until it is needed again. The aim is to make car and robot communicate, so that the car could, for example, share delivery details and mapped pathways with the robot. Digit is equipped with cameras and a LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) sensor so as to avoid obstacles and reach home doors without dropping its wares.
Ford's technology, research and development department is full of surprises. In recent months, it has presented a smart bed to keep space-hogging sleepers in their own "lanes," a prototype noise-canceling dog kennel and a shopping cart that can brake on its own.