DHL Supply Chain to use autonomous robots in life sciences sector

DHL Supply Chain — part of Deutsche Post DHL Group — will pilot the use of autonomous robots within the warehouses of its life sciences sector, reports Bloomberg.

The robots, or LocusBots, are developed by Locus Robotics and cost $35,000 each. Over the next two months, DHL will use the robots at a facility in Memphis, Tenn., to help locate and pick surgical devices off the shelves that will be sent to healthcare facilities across the country.

The LocusBots will find and transport items from the shelves, while warehouse staff oversee the process.

"The first trend was to try to replace humans," Locus CEO Rick Faulk told Bloomberg. "Now it's about humans and robots working collaboratively."

The pilot program will experiment with different picking strategies and examine the robots' ability to communicate with both the staff members and the warehouse management system, according to a news release.

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